Reflections Blog

New Book Release: Adaptive Coaching, 2nd ed.

I am pleased to announce that the Second edition of Adaptive Coaching has just been published.  The first edition of the book has been a great success, thanks to the many readers who have found it to be a useful and practical guide for improving their coaching effectiveness.  But a decade has passed since the first edition was published, and the world of coaching has advanced considerably during that period.  Coaching has become one of the most popular means of developing people in organizations, and the number of people who call themselves coaches has multiplied exponentially.  This edition of the book retains everything that made the first edition so useful and adds chapters that will help readers enhance their coaching skills even further.

For the 2nd edition of the book, I chose to work with co-author Laurie Voss, who has been my colleague at Lore International Institute and now Korn/Ferry International for more than a decade.  For years, Laurie was the director of our global coaching practice.  She has coached numerous executives and professionals in the world of work and managed large coaching programs for Fortune 500-type clients.  She brought a wealth of insight to the 2nd edition, and I am delighted that she agreed to partner with me on this edition.

This edition of Adaptive Coaching retains the chapters on assessing clients' needs and practicing adaptive coaching.  These chapters, which are based on decades of research on coaching effectiveness, offer many practical tips and sample coaching dialogues showing what works and what doesn't.  New to the 2nd edition are two sections entitled "Driving Deep and Lasting Change" and "Becoming an Adaptive Coach."  The first section describes how coaches can help clients change and includes chapters on transformational coaching and performance coaching.  One of the biggest developments in coaching during the past decade has been a proliferation of coaching approaches based on various psychological disciplines, including psychoanalysis, adult learning theory, social psychology, cognitive-behavioral psychology, appreciative inquiry and positive psychology, family therapy and systems theory, and transpersonal psychology.  We argue that all of these approaches have merit and bring unique insights to coaching--and that adaptive coaches do not use any of these approaches exclusively but rather brings the best insights from all of them to their coaching practice.

The final new section of the book argues that adaptive coaches are informed practicitioners, that they vary their coaching approach depending on the needs and preferences of the people they coach and those clients' sponsoring organizations.  It also argues that coaching is inherently self-reflective, that in coaching others coaches invariably have insights about their own journeys.  We argue that the best coaches work to complete their own journeys, and this requires healthy self-reflection as you coach.  "The purpose of this journey," we say, "is not to find blemishes or wallow in insecurities.  It should be undertaken with loving kindness for the person you are and respect for the gifts you can offer to others.  When it is undertaken in that spirit of acceptance, the authentic self you discover is a gift you give to yourself.  And it makes you a better coach." 

Adaptive Coaching, 2nd ed. is available now at and other online retailers.

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