All posts by Carmen

°EmployID Peer Coaching Concept – Process

This peer coaching model is based on the classical setting with one individual working on a problem in each coaching-session.

EmployID – Peer Coaching Concept (background)

This guide is meant to help organising and performing peer coaching with other PES practitoners in order to strengthen resources and responsibility of one’s own.

In the figure below  the phases in coaching are described on the macro-level:

  • the initial phase,
  • the main phase and
  • the final phase.
Macro-und Medolevel Intervision
Fig. 3: Macro & meso level of the peer coaching concepts (concept based on Berg & Berninger-Schaefer 2010, Berninger-Schaefer 2011)

The initial phase is where the peer coaching is organized and structured and to sort out what problems need to be solved. In the main phase the peer coaching process starts to find a solution for the given problem. The final phase is for making plans and giving feedback on the coaching process (there can be more than one coaching process, more than one “main phase”). Below the described phases there are three fields with “problem”, “change of pattern (state)” and “solution”. This is the meso-level of this peer coaching model. First the problem is given, then there is a need to change the pattern state: change your feelings, thoughts, physiology and behavior in order to concentrate on the solution. The peer coaching for PES practitioners is solution-oriented, meaning simply, there is not much time spent analyzing the problem, but focusing on possible solutions and further steps.

Pattern states in Coaching

One of the indirect results of coaching is the emotional self-awareness and it is activated by the coach through questions focusing on feelings, affects, etc. But this is not only a result from coaching for the client, but also an ability the coach needs.
For the client it means to be aware of one’s feelings and attitude it is the knowledge or perception of the self. Knowing about your current emotional state and what influences it, is the first step to changing this state.

“The change of pattern state is a change of perspective or angle of view. The search for solutions is not performed from a problem state or problem view, but by analyzing the steps that led to the desired objective along an objective vision from the solution state. It is not possible and not necessary to delete the malfunctioning problem state. Instead, it is important to focus on the visualized solution state (Schmidt, 2012, p. 114). The pattern state with its focus on the problem or solution depends on the purely subjective emotional evaluation of a client in a situation. Emotions play a decisive role in life and they guide or lead actions (Gluck, Mercado & Myers 2010, p. 389)” (Wolf, 2014, p. 4f.).

EmployID – Peer Coaching Concept (process)

The actual coaching process on the micro-level is devided in:

    • start, roles, collection of problems, selection
    • problem & situation
    • vision, resources
    • collecting resources
    • setting goals
    • solutions & next steps
    • feedback

These steps will be described in more detail in the following video:

  • This can be completely personal, a problem only the person who is the client concerns.
  • Or it can be similar to problems of others, but transfer needs to be done in personal by the other group members and can be reflected in the feedback phase.
Resource peer coaching model I (author’s own graph & concept based on Lippmann 2009, Berg & Berninger-Schäfer 2010, Berninger-Schäfer 2011)
Fig. 4: EmployID Peer Coaching Process Model concept based on Lippmann 2009, Berg & Berninger-Schaefer 2010, Berninger-Schaefer 2011

Group size and roles

To perform peer coaching there is the need of the group members to take in different roles. In this peer coaching model there are three roles: client, peer coaching facilitator and advisors. In each coaching process there is only one client and one peer coaching facilitator but many advisors (the rest of the intervision group members). There should be at least three advisors in order to have a helpful process. This means a minimum group size of five people. More advisors are even better, since they all give different and important impulses for the process. In the beginning a more experienced person from another peer coaching group can observe and give feedback to the group.

For these steps different roles need to be assigned:

Role: client

The client is the one giving the problem that ineeds to be solved. He is the one answering questions of the peer coaching facilitator and getting advised by the advisors. The client is the expert on his/her problem.

 Role: peer coaching facilitator

The peer coaching facilitator takes the role that a professional coach would take in a group coaching. He asks questions, keeps the time and the process going. The peer coaching facilitator may not give advice. This role could be supported by an e-peer coaching tool to facilitate unexperienced peer coaching facilitators and the whole peer coaching group.

Role: advisor

The advisors can support the client and the peer coaching facilitator by giving feedback and advice.

The idea behind peer coaching is that in every coaching-session in the peer coaching process the roles change. Everyone in the peer coaching group can take in the every role. This will be supported by training on peer coaching. For better organization of the group and to introduce possible new members on a later state it can be helpful to have a person in the group who acts as group contact member. This group contact moderates the peer coaching process in the non-coaching-session parts of the initial and the final phase (start and feedback). In general the whole group is responsible for good working processes. The group also should decide together on any changes or new participants.

Rules for peer coaching

1. The members in the group commit themselves to keep the confidential information in the group.

2. The members of the group commit themselves to take part actively.

3. The members of the group commit themselves to have a respectful attitude towards the other members and themselves.

The group can also set up their own (additional) rules.

Structure of peer coaching

In the following chapter the structure of the coaching-session in the peer coaching process will be described in detail.

Start of peer coaching

The contact person of the group welcomes everybody, problems of group members (including head of the group) are collected, a selection of problems for what is urgent and a plan of time is done. Afterwards roles for the peer coaching session(s) need to be assigned (client, peer coaching facilitator, advisors).

This should take no more than 5 minutes.

Problem & situation

Now the peer coaching facilitator takes over the process: The peer coaching facilitator asks the client about the problem. The advisors listen and can make notes (if necessary). They observe mimic, gestures, posture and how the client behaves. They also think of what they feel themselves about the problem and what connotations and mental pictures come to their mind by listening to the client.

This should not take more than 5 minutes. And in the end there needs to be a clear definition of the problem in one sentence and with “I” in the beginning.

Example for a possible problem could be:

  • “I am not able to switch off at home.”

Possible Questions of peer coaching facilitator:

  • “What is your problem about?
  • What makes it a problem?
  • Who else is part of the problem?
  • What did you already try to solve the problem?
  • Please, could you put your problem in one short and clear sentence?”

 Vision, resources

The peer coaching facilitator asks of the last time the client was enthusiastic about something and helps the client to visualize the feelings, thoughts, strengths and resources of that moment.

Example for possible questions concerning the above named problem:

“Imagine the last time you were completely fulfilled by your spare time after work. When was that? How did it feel? What were you thinking? Where did you feel it? Can you express your feelings when you were completely into your spare time through a certain posture, mimic, gestic? What were your strengths then? What strengths do you have and what do you need?”

The strengths can be written down and/or illustrated by the client or the peer coaching facilitator for a better vizualisation.

More topic open questions could be:

“Imagine the problem is already solved. Everything is fine and you archived your goals. Can you imagine a scenario where you have been successful? How does it feel? Where do you feel it (in your body)? Describe your feelings, thoughts, behavior? Could you show me how you look, when you archived your goal?”

This step may take up to 10 minutes.

After this step the advisors come into play again. They again listened and are now allowed to help collecting more resources in the next step.

Collecting resources

In this step the advisors add their ideas on which strengths and resources that are still needed or which strengths they feel the client has hidden beyond. They can also ask, if there are e.g. supporting systems like family, friends, other persons, rituals, places with a certain atmosphere, etc.. The client can comment on that later on and pick strengths and resources that might be helpful for solving the problems. The peer coaching facilitator only keeps time in this setting, writes down the resources and strengths named by the advisors and moderates the discussion (if necessary).

This may take up to 10 minutes.

Setting goals

In this phase the peer coaching facilitator asks the client what the client wants to achieve now. The client formulates a specific goal and an order to the group, to find possible solutions for achieving the goal.

Example for possible questions concerning the above named problems:

  • “Now we have looked at your strengths and resources. What is your goal you want to achieve? Think of a goal that is precise and tell us, then give your advisers an order on what you want them to brainstorm on.”
  • Possible goal could be: “I want something to remind me that I am now at home and can enjoy my spare time. I want the advisors to find something that reminds me.” OR “I want to be less emotional involved with my work. I want my advisors to find solutions for getting more space between me and my work.”

This may take up to 10 minutes.

Solution & next steps

The possible solutions given by the advisors are being collected by the peer coaching facilitator on a flipchart or else. Important is to note everything, even if it sounds unrealistic at first. The peer coaching facilitator asks afterwards which solutions are fitting for the client. The client can mark the most helpful ones and take at least one step in the next 36 hours. The peer coaching facilitator asks the client how he will take responsibility on going the first step(s)

This may take up to  10 minutes.


Everybody of the group starting with client and peer coaching facilitator explain what they learned for themselves in the process. Afterwards the session is closed and another session can be started.

This may take up to 5 minutes.

Back to Week 1

°EmployID Peer Coaching Concept – Basics

“This type refers to a specific form of coaching carried out among colleagues. The members of the group take turns in adopting the role of coach and thus provide coaching to each other. All members are responsible for the coaching process. Synonyms are: ‘Intervision’, ‘Collegial Coaching'” (Ajdukovic et. al 2014, p. 28).

Peer coaching comes from Supervision, where an expert works with one person or a group on their cases at work. It is often used for reflection of counsellors, coaches, and educators.

Characteristics of peer coaching


Characteristics of peer coaching
Fig. 2: Peer Coaching Characteristics based on Lippmann 2009

There a certain characteristics on intervision you need to understand:

  • group of equal rank

The group that does peer coaching is of equal rank. That does not mean, that persons in the group can be differently qualified, but it means, that everyone in the group may bring in his problem equally and no one of the group is a professional coach who leads the group or process.

  • common professional focus

Another thing is the professional focus. Usually there is a common professional interest. People in the group have a common objective, because they have maybe the same professional background.

  • target-oriented process

The process is target-oriented which means it is about a solution-focused exchange to find one or more solutions that can be transferred into work afterwards.

  • mutualy defined structure

There is a mutually defined structure that supports the peer coaching process (the main structure will be provided to you in this Online Course).

  • volunatiness, liability

Peer coaching should be voluntary, but within the group there is a need of liability to take part actively and feel responsible for the processes.

  • idea of „giving and taking“

There is the idea of “giving and taking” which means that you learn from each other and help each other.

  • counsel without fee

The peer coaching is without fee, because there is no professional needed, there are trademarked concepts. (Lippmann 2009)

Back to Week 1

°Coaching Basics & Ethics

To get started please take a minute and think about what you know about coaching. When you hear coaching, what comes to your mind?

What is coaching and what are coaches doing?

Coaching is a form of pre-structured and process-oriented communication between a coach and a client to support the client in finding a solution for a work-related challenge. There is  “a whole lot of asking and not much telling” in coaching, meaning that the coach is NOT telling the client what to do, but supports the client by asking questions on what would be useful in the clients situation. The coach is the expert of the process (the coaching process) and the client is the expert of the challenging situation. Only the client knows all for him or her visible aspects of the situation.

Professional coaches
Fig. 1: Professional coaches based on SmithLeadershipLLC, 2012

Professional coaches are

  • discerning listeners,
  • empathetic,
  • creative, intuitive & curious,
  • focused on you helping you design your future, your goals,
  • work with professional standards & ethics and
  • trained in coaching behaviors, competent (SmithLeadershipLLC, 2012).

There are some points that are very relevant in coaching: communication and ethics. In the following we introduce you to a short input on those topics.

Communication channels

Have in mind Paul Watzlawicks famous quote: “One cannot not communicate.” (Watzlawick et al., 1967, p. 51).

But how do we actually communicate?

First we need to distinguish into verbal (1) and non-verbal (2) communication.

Verbal communication seems to be pretty clear, but it is not only what someone says. The same sentence may be understood differently by others depending on how it is said. For example tone, speed and volume. But also the understanding depends on the situation or the social and ethnical background or if you talk to residents or foreigner.

Non-verbal Communication is everything else like gestures, mimic, posture, behaviour etc. Emotions are understood to be universal. Meaning every healthy human on this planet is able to distinguish between a happy person smiling and an angry person knitting one’s eyebrows. Some gestures and postures are also the same in many countries, but only by observation it is possible to read the bodylanguage since manifestation of postures are interindividual.

Another distinction needs to be made in (3) conscious and (4) unconcious communication. Non-verbal communication is mainly unconcious. Or are you aware of how your feet stand on the ground while talking to a person you like and how it is differently when you dislike the person?

Since we will have peer-e-coaching as this online courses outcome there is also the distinction between (5) face-to-face communication or (6) communication from a distance e.g. telephone call, video conference, and e-mail. So there is not only (7) spoken communication, but also written communication (8). In written communication there can be differences in expression, punctiation, way of writting and maybe emoticons that can giveimportant information about the writer.

In either way it is not only important to listen or read carefully on what is said or written, but how it is said and written. This sometimes means interpretation that you clarify by asking the client, if you understood the right way.

Ethics in Coaching

One of the most important points in coaching, before a coaching process can be started is to be clear and transparent about ethics.
Since coaching is at the moment more and more professionalized there are a lot of associations and the members there who engage themselves to keep the ethical standards of their association.

International Coaching Federation (ICF) – Code of Ethics
An example there is the code of ethics by the International Coaching Federation (ICF) to give you an understanding on what is meant by ethics in coaching. There is no Croatian version yet uploaded on the ICF-site.

Maybe you know ethical guidelines from other coaching associations? You could share them with us via Twitter using #PeerCoachingOC

This is very crucial. In peer coaching the whole coaching group needs to engage themselves to keep ethical standards and this has to be discussed in the very beginning.
Think for a moment about what is important to you? Which rules and standards does a group need to provide and keep, to make you feel comfortable with working on your problems? What should be the consequences for disregarding the rules?



Back to Week 1

Self-Coaching (pilot)

Remember the process of the peer coaching?

Self-coaching can be structured in the same way!

bluebell walk
Forest © Microsoft Office 2014

Summary – Peer Coaching concept I structure:

  • Phase 1:  Problem & situation
  • Phase 2:  Vision, resources
  • Phase 3: Collecting resources
  • Phase 4: Setting goals
  • Phase 5: Solution & next steps

Guidline for EmployID Self-Coaching:

Phase 1: Problem & situation

  • Which concern would you like to work on?
  • How would you describe the actual problem curtly and bold?
  • What have you tried so far to solve the problem?
  • How far are other persons concerned by the problem situation?
  • Can you feel the problem physically or spring suitable pictures or metaphors to your mind?
  • If your problem is solved optimal, how will you recognize it?

Phase 2: Vision, resources

  • Imagine you’re on holiday and your problem has been solved overnight. What happened to solve your problem?
    • How do you feel now that the problem is solved?
    • Can you feel anything physically after the problem is solved? What do you feel?
    • Which thoughts are running through your mind now that the problem is solved?

Phase 3: Collecting resources

  • What helped you in past resembling situations?
  • Fill you resource wheel with resources that could help you in the current situation.
    • Think of internal resources such as strengths, values, capabilities.
    • Think of external resources such as other persons, communities, tools.

Phase 4: Setting goals

  • How will you recognize in your actual situation that the problem has been solved?
    What’s different?
  • Which goals can you derive for your concern?
    • To which part of my concern refers the goal?
    • How can I notice that I have reached my goal?
    • How attractive and challenging is reaching the goal for myself?
    • How realistic is my goal?
    • Till when is the goal to be reached?

Phase 4: Solution & next steps

  • How can you put your goal/ goals into practice?
  • What are possible steps?

Now, you can start your Self-Coaching right away!

One step futher: Receiving feedback!

If you want you can improve your Self-Coaching process by getting others involved in giving you feedback just like in the peer coaching.

In Phase 3 ask others (collagues, friends, family) about what they think are your internal and external resources. You can also take the resource heel as help.

After clearifing the goal, you can ask others (collagues, friends, family, even strangers) on their ideas for solutions and next steps.