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Dr Yi-Ling Lai

Understanding coaching through competency: focusing on an effective coaching relationship

Theme: Coaching: approaches/schools/theories
Area: Coaching
Type: Research & how it has been applied in practice

Session on Friday, Jul 8th, 13:50
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Dr Yi-Ling Lai joined Portsmouth Business School in the UK (PBS) as a Lecturer in Organisation Studies & Human Resource Management in January 2016 having completed her PhD in Occupational Psychology in University of Surrey (UK) and MA in HRD and Consulting in Lancaster University (UK). Yi-Ling also has several years’ consultancy experience in talent management and leadership development in a global management consulting firm (DDI Development Dimensions International). Her research interest mainly focuses on HRD strategies and talent management, particularly how to enhance motivation and positive behavioural change through organisational learning activities and leadership development. She was fascinated by coaching methodology which focuses on personal growth and change through a facilitation and open-dialogue process. Her doctoral research identified and examined attributes/behavioural indicators for coaching practitioners to enhance coaching relationship and outcomes. She is interested in applying coaching interventions to leadership and positive behavioural change in the organisations toward business performance improvement. She has several publications on the development of evidence-based coaching study and practice.


This presentation reports an investigation on effective competencies for coaching practitioners to establish a constructive coaching relationship with their clients towards positive coaching outcomes. A role analysis which combined research methods (critical incident interviews and cross-valid questionnaires) was conducted to outline and examine a Coaching Relationship Competency Framework (CRCF). The draft competency framework outlined from stage one and two was further evaluated by means of a quasi-experimental study to compare two coaching groups’ process and outcomes. A total of 75 behavioural indicators comprised three levels of competencies (e.g. fundamental soft skills) were defined in this study.

This presentation will commence with the explanation of the research beckground including summarising the exisiting evidence in coaching studies. Subsequently, the details of this research such as research methods and findings will be presented. The final part of this presentation will briefly discuss how this coaching relationship competency framework can contribute to future coaching research and practice.

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