Coaching in action by Martin Miles

Posted by on Oct 4, 2012 in Sticky Pad

Just recently I was fortunate to see a great coach in action. Whenever I see a great coach, I ask myself what qualities does he/she demonstrate that allows them to achieve a great outcome?

I am talking about Gareth Malone, listed as a choirmaster and broadcaster—he can also be listed as a coach in my view.

Gareth, responsible for bringing the Military Wives to our attention, is now involved in a new project in which he is visiting ‘busy work places’ and getting them to sing! The best of the groups will meet in a final competition to find and announce the top ‘busy work place choir’. His first week he was at Lewisham hospital where he gathered together a complete cross section of singing volunteers—from porter to physiotherapist to consultant surgeon—and more.

So as a coach, Gareth gained commitment from the group. He planted the enthusiasm seed too and we all watched it grow over a number of weeks. We further watched as he encouraged, cajoled and demanded more from the team. He spotted talent in an individual and massaged her until she realised that underneath that bullied childhood was someone with a skill that just needed to be extracted. Yes, coach Gareth did that too.

He encouraged everyone to help and support each other—although some did not know each other before the choir (the common cause) brought them together. He built trust between them; he stretched them with what may have been a tricky song, he showed energy by the bucket load which unsurprisingly rubbed off onto the team.

Then he had the choir show their emotions (singing is emotional) as proudly they sang to an audience of patients and then their families, friends and other patients.

List all the qualities you want to see in a great coach and then see them come to life with Gareth Malone. The programme continues ….