January AMCI Book Review Corner

The AMCI Reading Corner is a crowdsourced resource share aimed to serve as a platform for the AMCI community to share book recommendations and reflect with personal takeaways. Starting with monthly postings, more ways to engage will be shared as the idea grows.

This month,  Paulina van Eeden Hill, CAE of Strategic Association Management shares her review of The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever by Michael Bungay Stanier

Have you ever spent an hour with a team member talking through an issue, giving brilliant advice, solving all their problems only to find out that none of your advice was taken, the problem got worse, and there is another appointment on your calendar for discussion part 2? The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever by Michael Bungay Stanier is a quick, impactful read to help us change our “advice monster” into more coach-like habits.

This book encourages us to “stay curious a little longer, rush into action and advice-giving a little more slowly” by slowing down using these seven essential questions as a guide the next time you have the opportunity to coach or develop a staff member:

1. The Kick Start Question: What’s on your mind?
2. The AWE Question: And what else?
3. The Focus Question: What’s the real challenge here for you?
4. The Foundation Question: What do you want?
5. The Lazy Question: How can I help?
6. The Strategic Question: If you’re saying yes to this, what are you saying no to?
7. The Learning Question: What was most useful for you?

The Coaching Habit is a quick read with great Question Masterclass tips, like be comfortable in the silence, actually listen to the answer, and when and if you do have advice to give (after you’ve stayed curious a little longer), don’t use questions to give advice (e.g., “have you considered?”). Bungay Stanier has even included questions and note-taking areas to prompt the reader to reflect on habit building, triggers, and alternative actions.

If you’d rather learn by listening or are podcast fan, check out the Brené Brown Dare to Lead podcast episode where Bungay Stanier reviewed the seven questions and they role-play a discussion using these tips (super helpful to hear in action!).

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