Do you ever find you start a session, look at last session’s scribbled notes and think “Now WHAT were they supposed to have done?.”
Do you wish you had a specific, helpful coaching plan template to track your client’s progress and actions?
If so, keep reading! You landed on the right article. We’re Cass & Tee, the duo behind Lovely Impact, a coaching branding and web design company that helps coaches build transformational businesses that leave an impact on the world.
As coaches ourselves, the one thing that we are obsessed with is templates, tools, and systems to help coaches reach more people and do what they came here to do — coach! One of the most powerful tools any coach can have is a coaching plan template.
Let’s dive right in!
What is a Coaching Plan?
Coaching plans are plans which coaches use to keep track of their client’s progress throughout their sessions.
Having a coaching plan helps you to outline your framework for each individual client, and allows you to discuss and agree upon goals with the client. Having a clear plan can improve communication and understanding on both sides, helping to prevent confusion.
A coaching plan encourages you to think about each individual client’s journey and how you are going to guide them to create good, lasting habits and improve their lives. It also offers space for you to communicate with them about their thoughts on how you can help.
Your coaching plan should be built before you begin your first sessions with your client, and it should map out the whole journey you intend to take, both as a coach and the coachee.
It will set specific targets, mark major milestones, and serve as the blueprint for your entire relationship with the client.
What are the key elements of a coaching plan?
A coaching plan will be tailored to each individual, and different coaches will have different preferences about how they organize their plans, but all plans will share some common elements across different clients and coaches.
1. Client Coaching SMART Goals
You should always include goals in your coaching plan; these benefit both you and the client, bringing structure and finesse to your coaching strategy.
These goals will be unique to each client but should follow the S.M.A.R.T. structure. This means:
S: Specific. What matters most to this client? Hone in the details and create specific, focused goals.
M: Measurable. When you set the plan up, define how you will measure whether they have met a goal. What parameters will you use?
A: Agreed. You and your client must agree on the goals.
R: Realistic. Goals need to be challenging, but achievable. Too easy, and the client will lose interest. Too hard, and they may become demotivated.
T: Time-based. When should the goal be met? Define a time period in which the goal should be achieved.
2. Frequency of Coaching Sessions
A coaching plan should also cover how many sessions you will have and how often, for the whole of your coaching period. This ensures you and the client are on the same page and there is no confusion later.
It also lets you work out your S.M.A.R.T. goals realistically; you will know what your client wants to achieve, what time period they want to achieve it in, and how often you will get to see them and coach them.
3. Coaching Objectives
Once you have a plan that tells you your available sessions, you should set objectives for each of these. No session should be left without a clear purpose that lets both you and the client know what they will be working toward and what the session hopes to achieve.
This will help both of you form an overall map of the client’s journey and will make it easier to spot any unrealistic goals or slack moments where they aren’t progressing.
It will also make it easier for you as the coach to plan exactly what a session will consist of because you’ll know what your client is hoping to achieve in that specific session.
4. Client Responsibilities
The coaching plan should also cover the client’s responsibilities and any work that you want them to do between sessions. Much of your client’s progress will be made when you aren’t there to help; how will they know what they should be doing week by week?
Use your individual session goals to help guide any “homework” that you’re setting your client, and give them a clear breakdown of what they need to do prior to each session in order to be successful.
This will help your client stay on track and prepare for sessions, improving their efficiency and approach.
5. Progress Tracker: Explain how a coaching plan should include a way to track the progress of the client.
Your coaching plan will naturally serve as something of a progress tracker, but you should enhance this if possible by specifically tracking your client’s progress in terms of the goals set for each individual session, and the bigger overall goals your client wants to achieve.
Using the individual sessions will help you realize quickly if a client is falling behind and likely to miss a big target. This makes it easier to get them back on track, or slightly adjust the goals (or both).
You can also use the coaching plan to keep an eye on the past progress, and to encourage your client when they are feeling demotivated. Show them how much they have achieved, and prove to them that their current goals are equally within reach.
How do you write a coaching plan?
Now that you know how to write a coaching plan, it’s time to create one for your clients! Here’s how:
Step 1: Start with the end in mind.
Before you dive in, the first thing to do is to ask yourself what the client wants to achieve. Pull out your kick-off session notes and intake form and decide how many sessions you’ll need to help your client achieve their goal and what coaching methodologies would work to support those sessions.
Every goal needs its own focus and should be treated separately. By the end of this brainstorm, you should outline a coaching plan and know exactly how you plan to help your coaching client reach their goal.
Step 2: Choose your Coaching Tools.
Next, you want to decide what coaching tools and techniques you will use to support your client’s goals and the methodologies you’ve chosen to help them.
A coaching technique is a strategy that is used with coaching tools to help a client breakthrough. Every coach has different techniques depending on their niche and training. However, there are some universal coaching techniques and tools that can be used by any coach.
You can learn more by checking out: 15 Coaching Techniques That Work For Any Niche or Client >>
Step 3: Create The Plan
Now it’s time to create a plan! You want to start by taking the goals set and adding those to your coaching plan. Next, you’ll want to add how many sessions it will take to master each goal. Third, you’ll want to add the coaching tools and methodologies that you’ll cover in each session. Lastly, add in the homework you expect the client to commit to.
Pro Tip: Get The FREE Client Action Template from The Coaching Tools Company
The Coaching Tools Compay provides ready-to-use coaching forms, worksheets, and tools for coaches. Their Client Action Template is free and is perfect to use as a coaching plan template or to give directly to your clients to remember their actions.
• You can keep it for yourself or give it to your clients
• Keep track of client actions easily
• Hold your clients responsible for their commitments
• Helps you and your client stay organized
Coaching Plan FAQs
What is a coaching action plan?
A coaching action plan is a simple, practical client-action recording sheet for you – or your clients to use to keep track of SMART goals, client homework, and session notes.
What are the roles of a coaching plan?
There are two roles in a coaching plan. The role of the coach, who puts the plan together and setups the goals and objectives, and the role of the coachee who follows the plan and any suggested homework in between sessions.
Throw away those sticky notes and random sheets of paper. A coaching plan is exactly what you need to make sure that your client doesn’t miss any of their goals and objectives, and it keeps you organized and looking like the professional coach you are.
Do you use a coaching plan? If so, share below! If not, comment and let us know if this helps.