Coaching Tip #8: The "W" of G*R*O*W

W letter
W letter

W: What WILL you do?  1.    Now we move from “options to action” and from “creativity to  responsibility.”  We are closing the loop to do what it takes to meet our goal.  They are now developing action steps for a game plan to move forward.  Our goal in the "W" of our G*R*O*W coaching game plan for the leader is to take responsibility and own their game plan.  The goal for the coach is to leave the ball in the leader's hands and trust him/her to move ahead with God's help.

2.   Ask, “So, how do you want to proceed?”  They will choose their option from options list.  Note: occasionally they will choose a “W” that you feel a check about.  Rather than telling them you think it’s a bad idea, coach them through the implications of that course and that often helps them.

Help them develop “S*M*A*R*T” action steps



Achievable, but still causes them to stretch and trust the Lord

Relevant—fits into the big picture and their vision, values and mission at this point in time.

Time bound

3.  To help them with their S*M*A*R*T goals and reinforce a sense of responsibility and accomplishment, ask questions like these:

  • “WHAT option do you choose?”
  •  “WHAT steps do you need to take?”
  •  “WHERE does this fit in your master plan?”
  •  “WHO needs to know?”
  •  “WHEN will you begin…complete this?”
  •  “WHAT resources will you need?”
  •  “WHO needs to do WHAT to help you accomplish this?”

 4.   Have the leader summarize the action steps, with times/dates for each action.  This is crucial!  If you don’t, a coaching appointment can be nothing more than a good conversation.  They’ve got to leave with a game plan.

5.  Hold the leader accountable…yet allow for follow-up questions and observations before your next coaching appointment.  Leave the ball in the leader’s hands!

Wrapping Up…

What was most helpful to you from our visit today?

When will we meet again?

What can I pray for you about?

Finish your call with encouragement and prayer...bless them!

What happens when people don’t follow through?  Some tips:

  1. As they develop their “W”—their game plan—ask them directly, “Will you do this?”
  2. Make sure the “W” action steps are written down—preferably by the person you coach.
  3. If they fail to follow through, at the next coaching session, ask them what were the factors that contributed to them not following through.
  4. Get them to identify what things did go well (if only small things) and celebrate that with them.
  5. Help them to identify what they’ve learned that will help them change some things for next time.
  6. Coach them through the game plan again.
  7. Sometimes, people truly aren’t coachable.  You may say something like, “It appears that I’m not able to serve you well…it might be better for you to find someone else who can.”  We don’t want to enable people in an unhealthy way.

Download this tip as a Word doc here:  Coaching Tips #8 W of GROW

Adapted from: “TransforMissional Coaching” by Dr. Tim Roehl and Dr. Steve Ogne

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