Reflections on my maiden voyage as coaching teleclass trainer

As one of the learning opportunities in the ICA Train the Trainer class, I had the chance to lead a normal ICA teleclass.  I had the wonderful experience of working with Michael Monitz as my mentor coach/trainer.  He generously supported me leading one of his classes – Getting Started –  and gave me solid, supportive feedback and encouragement both before and after the class.  Thank you Michael!

While I’ve done training by conference call in the past, usually as a fallback when in-class training was not possible, it was always in the context of a consulting contract in which I already had a relationship with at least a few of the participants, and I already knew their challenges and corporate culture.  

In contrast, the ICA model is pre-designed to support adult learning in the teleclass medium.  It’s not a “second best” approach.  Participants can come from a variety of backgrounds, time zones, cultures, first languages, visions for coaching, styles and types of coaching, business backgrounds, and so on.  So there were a few new elements to the training that I knew were necessary to work on:

  • Because it was a Foundation Level class, some of the learners might be in their very first ICA class – I wanted to warmly welcome them into the community and support their courage in taking the first steps
  • I had never met the learners before, nor had they met each other: it was necessary to build a safe learning space, trust and rapport in minutes rather than the hours I might have as a consultant
  • The training I do with my consulting clients is very familiar to me – I’ve done it for years and have had enough feedback from clients to know they like my approach and it works; in contrast, leading the coaching class meant new material, new learner types, new lesson plans, competencies, assessment approach, etc. – there was really no common element except the human one

The class was a Saturday afternoon class, and very small.  There was, indeed, one person for whom this was the first class at ICA, and one person who had started months ago, took a break, and was back to start again.

The lesson plan is in another post, but in essence, it’s all about what it will take for you to start coaching, to begin to build your model and approach, and feel confident enough to make and keep supportable agreements with clients.

I was humbled by the power of silence and the “aha” moments for the learners.  My supportive  silence allowed them to think, think again, go deeper and share with each other.  The sense of trust was palpable by the end of the class.

All in all it was a fantastic learning experience!  Thank you ICA!


3 Responses

  1. Hey! YOU did that! (an abbreviated Acknowledgement & Celebration)

  2. Hi Vickie,
    Your comment on the use of silence in a teleclass is so very important, and I am thrilled that you expressed the benefits of having that silence.
    Love and Great Joy,

  3. Hi Vickie,

    Great job! I think it is extraordinary that you managed to let those “silences” be. I can imagine it’s probably one of the most difficult things to do… in your first ICA teleclass. Congratulations.

    And also you show great sensitiviy in perceiving the “aha” moments of others over the telephone.

    It’s been great learning for me to read your blog.


    Juan Antonio

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