Customer Review

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars de Haan's Relational Coaching, 21 April 2008
This review is from: Relational Coaching: Journeys Towards Mastering One to One Learning (Hardcover)
"Relational Coaching by Erik de Haan is a book which covers the coaching profession and speaks about the personal journey on which Erik has been travelling since getting lost in the maquis. The book discusses Eriks quite earth shattering statement that in fact it is the coachee that we should focus on rather than the tools of the coach with which to "handle the client.

Part I begins: The Ways of Coaching, and this sounds like a great place to start. de Haan takes us through trends; how coaching practice has grown and what he believes are the "active ingredients"; and even raises the stone tablets of the "Ten Commandments of the Executive Coach"; before finally working through the critical moments of the coaching relationship. In each of these we get a glimpse of the profession and personal side of de Haan's practice and his passion for excellence.

There is a significant chunk of the book dedicated to the data collected. Indeed the whole of Part II (and that's 120 or so pages) takes us through the process of gathering and analysis of said data. I found myself quite interested and amazingly I even read carefully statistics that when delivered by others in different formats had helped me sleep better. And as indeed de Haan found whilst on his holidays, the engaging nature of the research makes it hard to stay away from. These in-sites or clips of real coaching experience are essential reading for both beginners and experienced practitioner. To have access to such data will give coaches a deep well of experience to draw from.

Part III, continues along the "courageous" theme and is titled The Ways of Excellence. Here de Haan lays down the paths that have fed into his practice and what areas the practicing coach should focus ON to achieve excellence via training and accreditation - an area that has been of particular benefit to me, supervision groups. Led by an experienced coach facilitating and peers with whom you can exchange experiences it is a safe and revealing space in which to build and experiment with your style.

de Haan concludes with the "Library of the Executive Coach", where we find out about the texts which he feels have given the most to the coaching profession and explain how to be in the relationship. As with most of De Haan's writing this section is littered with references to classic Greek philosophy and mythology as well as some modern day classic's from Heron and Peltier and Carl Rogers.

Overall this book is an academically "clever" experience (which you can dip in and out of with ease), that reflects Eriks personality, and it is his passion and enthusiasm for the subject that really offer the newest and most revealing of all the tools that have been presented to the reader, because it is upon reflecting on these that one understands why we all coach: the power of watching someone else do something that makes them shine."
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