SOOP(L)AR framework

By | January 24, 2019

There are many frameworks promoted by coaching books and courses: Whitmore’s GROW, Prosci’s ADKAR, Bonham-Carter’s STAR, Full Potential Group’s CIGAR, Hawkins’ CLEAR to name just a few.

Although they are all different in their detail and order, most are similar enough that they include:

  • Establishing a goal, based on the client’s current situation
  • Consideration of how to achieve the goal
  • Making a plan
  • The client taking action to make their situation different

I have been using an amalgamation of many of these frameworks (which has resulted in the far less memorable acronym of SOOPAR) keeping the structure in the back of my mind during coaching sessions:

  • Establish the current situation
  • Set an outcome you wish to achieve
  • Investigate options
  • Create, review and commit to a plan
  • Act (making sure you measure the impact)
  • Review the impact (and amend plan if appropriate)

It should be noted that clients don’t necessarily work through this in a linear process, but can start in a different place, go in a different sequence, and cycle around many times. In other words, this is a skeleton to be used in whatever order is best, with the journey being both iterative and cyclical.
With individual clients, this model has worked very well.

However, when discussing their needs with a new client recently, I realised that a corporate engagement is slightly different.

Firstly, there’s an optional additional step: Learning.

Secondly, while one-to-one coaching is 100% non-directional (i.e. the direction is chosen by the coachee), organisations who approach me are often looking for a mixture of coaching, mentoring, training and some facilitation. So, during an engagement, I will often wear different hats (sometimes multiple hats at the same time), to move in-and-out of the various roles as they require. For example, I would usually start from a coaching standpoint, then maybe move in-and-out of mentoring before running some training, then dipping back out to mentorship and/or coaching.

So the updated model for organisational clients is SOOP(L)AR:

  • Establish the current situation (i.e. awareness that there is a problem, desire to change)
  • Set an outcome you wish to achieve
  • Investigate options
  • Create, review and commit to a plan (including getting the necessary people on-board)
  • Optional: Learn (new skills, theories, processes, etc)
  • Act (making sure you measure the impact)
  • Review the impact (and amend plan if appropriate)

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