InsideOut Development

Interviews with Experts: How InsideOut Coaching Benefits Teams

by Pivot Point


InsideOut Coaching is a best-in-class program for managers that improves their day-to-day coaching conversations to increase the capacity and performance of their teams.

This three-phased, client-tested process not only helps leaders become more effective at delivering feedback and creating ownership of shared goals, it also drives the factors that lead to profitability, including engagement, accountability, and productivity.

Learn more about the InsideOut Coaching program here.

We interviewed two L&D professionals to get a look at how their organizations implement InsideOut Coaching.

Brian Smith, Supervisor of Learning Delivery for Wawa

Gilda Stafford, SLW & Human Dynamics Leader for CACI Mission and Integrated Performance Solutions and Services

When did you first experience InsideOut Coaching?

Brian: I went through InsideOut Coaching as a participant at Wawa back in 2012.

Gilda: A program manager learned about it from a co-worker who had heard about InsideOut Coaching, but had not used it…The leadership team did a web search and decided to check it out. [They were] impressed with the content, so I was sent to preview and obtain training certification. I find it to be an easy and comprehensive toolset for our environment

How long have you been facilitating InsideOut Coaching?

Brian: I have been facilitating InsideOut Coaching for a little over two years now.

Gilda: [I’ve been facilitating this course with CACI] since the inception of our project. [I] realized a higher demand signal and ensured others were trained. We now have four IOC trainers and will send another to training for implementation in Japan. Since inception, we have delivered 28 IOC training courses across our client base. Most sessions include an average of 15 participants, but many have more than 30.

What specific concerns within encouraged your organization to seek out coaching?

Brian: Coaching consistently comes up as an area of importance for leaders. As we continue to grow, we want our leaders in a position where they are able to lead their teams effectively.

Gilda: [We wanted to] promote a culture change. Our client’s needed to accelerate leadership development due to workload and workforce demographic changes.

Core Coaching Characteristics (and Why You Should Care)

What makes InsideOut Coaching an attractive option for your organization? 

Brian: The mindset of InsideOut Coaching is a very powerful one. Empowering our leaders to ask more questions has major benefits to our culture.

Gilda: The GROW® Model is a well-known and proven approach to center our coaching methodology. [The] high-impact tools and processes [of] InsideOut Coaching help us transfer a coaching mindset and the necessary skills to our clients to promote self-sufficiency and sustainment. [It’s] immediately useable where there are gaps in leadership/coaching, particularly in shipyard/industrial environment.

Why did you choose InsideOut Coaching as your method-of-choice?

Brian: InsideOut Coaching aligns with our leadership philosophy of Servant Leadership. In Servant Leadership cultures, leaders are there to remove obstacles for those that they serve. InsideOut Coaching allows our leaders to empower their associates to be their best every day.

Gilda: It’s straightforward and skills-based. Leaders are able to apply the GROW Model right away, as part of their normal interactions. I love the tools and the immediate impact they have.

Top 10 Criteria for Choosing a Coaching Approach

What tools and/or ideas excite you about InsideOut Coaching?

Brian: I really like the simplicity of InsideOut Coaching. Too often people think that in order to be a great coach, you have to have all of the answers. As a good coach will tell you, it’s more about knowing the right questions.

InsideOut Coaching allows the facilitator to promote this simple concept while providing tools like the GROW Coaching Worksheet. It all makes sense and is backed up with great resources.

Gilda: The GROW Model and more specifically the GROW-on-the-Go approach has been widely embraced by the leaders with varying degrees of success.

[Also,] the Check-In and Feedback conversations. It’s the easiest tool to learn and apply. For our participants it is the one they most believe they will be able to use on a regular basis. It’s also the one they believe they can use in multiple applications: one-to-one meetings, team meetings, brainstorming sessions, project management daily check in meetings, etc.

The idea of asking the Check-In Questions to discern project status is often exciting to our clients. We coach them to pre-inform staff of the questions that will be asked so they can be prepared to fully and thoughtfully respond; as well as know where they want to ask for help.

What tool within InsideOut Coaching are your participants most excited about?

Brian: The GROW Worksheet creates the most excitement for our participants. Our managers are already having one-on-ones and career conversations with their direct reports. This is a simple tool to help keep those conversations on track.

Gilda: The Performance Wheel and understanding the fuel of Faith, Fire, and Focus is often eye opening. [But on a practical level,] both the GROW process and the Alignment Conversation are the tools/processes that the participants are most excited about, especially when the leaders incorporate into their overarching leadership & management practices.

Learn more about the GROW Model and Performance Wheel here.


When do participants have that “aha moment?” 

Brian: I can see the lightbulb go off for participants when we watch the video with Alan Fine giving a tennis lesson. You can watch in real time someone have a breakthrough. We debrief this video and they realize that Alan did not tell the coachee anything, yet he asked the right questions. They are blown away!

Gilda: Aha moments occur as a result of facilitating dialogue relevant to the industrial work environment in areas like: having a quick and effective way for leaders to address and support breakthrough decision making, mitigating conflict and supporting an enhanced level of accountability for self and those being lead.

Participants who begin the day saying they don’t have time to coach are often wowed after their 20-minute coaching activity/experience where they solve or have breakthroughs on issues that have long plagued them.

With recognition of the impact of focused thinking on decision velocity, leaders see where they have been the Interference and the value of Faith, Fire, and Focus.

Decision Velocity: A Target for Coaching

When did you begin to see the value of the InsideOut Development content?

Brian: We see value immediately as participants are sitting in the workshop. This is such a great concept that is easy to implement. In our organization we have transformed from a “telling” management style to an “asking” management style. As participants sit in this workshop they start to understand the impact of asking questions rather than telling their people what to do. There is a significant impact.

Gilda: [We see value] immediately, based on participant input.

What impact do you see from InsideOut Coaching within your organization?

Brian: We deliver InsideOut Coaching to all of our managers throughout the organization. I know that it is making an impact when people stop me in the halls to tell me about a recent interaction with one of their direct reports. They reference the tools that they learned in the workshop and explain how easy it was to practice. With this program, we have evolved into a coaching culture within our organization.

Gilda: For CACI, this training program offers a wider impact across the enterprise by having full classes monthly. Improved overall leadership via effective coaching significantly impacts leaders’ abilities to more effectively communicate, delegate, resolve conflicts, support direct-reports in achieving breakthroughs in their work and most importantly, supporting professional development.

InsideOut Coaching and the models/processes trained, when implemented as they are, improve pull-through of critical work streams, delegation and overall effectiveness/efficiencies of work performance. This then has the impact of improving meeting schedules, budgets and importantly, providing a catalyst for professional development of staff.

It is reminding participants that they don’t always have to “tell”. They are beginning to see that taking a coaching/InsideOut approach gives opportunities for the people that work for them to own their development. It also is opening up opportunities for more candid feedback. For those who do attempt to apply the full toolkit they are finding that it creates some meaningful management moments with their direct reports.

Realizing the Value of a High Impact Coaching Culture: Read the Report

Category: Coaching Coaching Culture

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InsideOut Development is the world leader in workplace coaching. Quite simply, we help clients hold the conversations that energize people, motivate action, and lead to better—even incredible—business performance. PivotPoint is the voice of the InsideOut Development blog. We hope you’ll find inspiration to act as a “pivot point” in your trajectory (be it personal or professional) and to fuel your everyday breakthroughs.

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