// you’re reading...

How to Win

Language and Coaching

The other day on a cooking show, the host said she was making a classic French dish.

“Classic French dish,” she said, “is code for lots and lots of butter.”

Wow! That really made me think. I’ve heard the phrase “classic French dish” many times, but I never attached the same meaning to it that the cook did.

It really made me think about coaching. Do your players know what you’re talking about? Do your words mean the same thing to them as they mean to you?

It reminds me of the Bill Cosby routine where God instructs Noah on building the ark. “Make it 50 cubits long, 10 cubits wide, and 15 cubits high.”

“Just one question,” Noah said. “What’s a cubit?”

There are at least two elements to the words you say. There is the meaning you intend, and the meaning that others receive. If you want to coach correctly, you better make sure those two meanings are as close together as possible.

If you want to improve at instruction, motivation, correction, inspiration, team-building and leading, make your language as precise as possible.

You don’t want to people to be saying, “I thought you meant …” You don’t want to be talking about cubits when others are hearing “classic French dish.”


No comments for “Language and Coaching”

Post a comment