Competencies of a coachee

Effective coachees tend to be committed to and willing to spend time on their learning. They recognize the importance of playing an active role in the coaching relationship – they don’t expect to be coached so much as to engage with coaching. Some of the key attributes they exhibit are expressed in the questionnaire below. The more you can answer yes to, the more effective a coachee you will be!


  • I think through what issues I want to address in a coaching session
  • I think through what outcomes I am looking for from the session
  • I gather information and example to facilitate our discussion
  • I ask for coaching when I think it would be valuable for me
  • I am able to make the link between current performance issues and my long-term skills development goals
  • I gather feedback from colleagues


  • I want to help my coach help me think things through
  • I am interested in his/ her feedback
  • I value constructive criticism
  • I am keen to learn from other people
  • If I commit to particular actions or changes, I will generally do my best to deliver
  • I show I am grateful for my coach’s efforts


  • I listen well
  • I can manage my emotions, even if there are difficult messages for me
  • I ask insightful questions, to understand what the coach is saying
  • I take time during the coaching session to reflect on what is said
  • I am able to challenge assumptions in a positive way – both mine and those of my coach
  • I am able to think creatively about issues we discuss

Session management

  • I recognise and accept that I share responsibility for making the coaching process work
  • I clarify what is expected of me / what I expect of myself at the end of the coaching session
  • I take notes to help me remember what we discussed
  • I am open to explore different perceptions
  • I am happy to explore feelings as well as facts

Reciprocity and Reviewing

  • I am willing and able to give my coach feedback on their coaching
  • I spend time reflecting on the coaching session
  • I plan how I am going to make changes in line with what was discussed in the coaching session
  • I maintain a learning log to track my progress on coaching goals
  • I keep my coach informed about my progress

© David Clutterbuck. All rights reserved

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