There have been many claims to authorship of the GROW model as a way of achieving goals and solving problems. Jonathan Passmore and Stefan Cantore have suggested that one ‘argument against behavioural-based approaches such as GROW is that their goal nature excludes the potential to explore philosophical aspects of life. There are a number of different grow model of coaching pdf of the GROW model. The following table presents one view of the stages but there are others.
The ‘O’ in this version has two meanings. The Goal is the end point, where the client wants to be. The goal has to be defined in such a way that it is very clear to the client when they have achieved it. The Current Reality is where the client is now. What are the issues, the challenges, how far are they away from their goal? There will be Obstacles stopping the client getting from where they are now to where they want to go.
If there were no Obstacles the client would already have reached their goal. Once Obstacles have been identified, the client needs to find ways of dealing with them if they are to make progress. The Options then need to be converted into action steps which will take the client to their goal. These are the Way Forward. As with many simple principles, any user of GROW can apply a great deal of skill and knowledge at each stage but the basic process remains as written above.
There are numerous questions which the coach could use at any point and part of the skill of the coach is to know which questions to use and how much detail to uncover. The following is a very simple example of using the GROW model to achieve a goal. This example deals with weight loss. The more heartfelt and personal, the more meaningful the goal is to the person and the more likely they will be to commit to and achieve the goal.
When you have been able to lose weight — what made the difference? What is the difference between the times you are able to keep weight off and the times when you put it on again? What would have to change for you to be sure you could lose the weight and keep it off? If the client genuinely answers these questions they will discover new information about what works and does not work for them in terms of weight loss, and create some potential for change. These could include looking at which diets or exercise regimes work best, or finding a specific type of support. This is where they commit to what they will do in the short term to put the strategies into effect.
For instance, one action might be asking a particular person for support, and another might be to buy a different selection of foods. GROW neatly highlights the nature of a problem for coaching purposes. In order for a problem to exist in coaching terms there has to be two elements present. Using GROW automatically breaks a problem down into these component parts. The same principles can be applied whatever goal or problem the client has. GROW can be used on technical problems, issues regarding processes, strategy questions, interpersonal issues and many more. The model can also be used by a group who are all working on the same problem or goal.