Efficiency and productivity are as important in coaching as they are in other areas of your work. How do you maintain an environment where members of your team feel free to communicate, but efficiency and productivity are also honored?
Clearing is a process by which you create a space for the person being coached to release intense emotions or lines of thought that can inhibit their moving forward. The principle here is that if strong emotions are pushed down, they will interfere with the success of the coaching. Clearing involves allowing the person being coached to release emotions or “get things off their chest” for a specified period of time, with the agreement that once done, the coaching will proceed. In my experience, clearing works very well. You are acknowledging that emotions are present and that they need to be expressed. Usually, I give the process five to ten minutes. In rare cases, someone wants to go on. Then, I suggest that they identify a specific way they can release the emotions and commit to doing so, after the coaching is completed. If they cannot move into the coaching, we reschedule for another time.
Creating space for clearing is a coaching skill that acknowledges both that emotions are present and that you have a desire to move forward towards your goals.