What does it take to move toward Family-Centered Coaching?
Now that you have assessed where your organization and coaching mindset practices are related to family-centered coaching, you likely want to identify ways to move from wherever your organization is toward fully family-centered coaching.
Each organization will have a different mix of activities and strategies to move along the continuum; the strategies below are illustrative of the kinds of activities that can help to expand organizational thinking and help organizations make concrete shifts toward a family-centered coaching approach. Here are some steps that can be taken to move to a coaching mindset and then to a family-centered coaching focus:
To move from a more staff-driven mindset focus to a more coaching mindset focus:
- Examine data at leadership and staff levels to identify how coaching might improve outcomes; identify metrics to assess the impact of coaching for families and program outcomes.
Support staff in moving toward coaching with leadership commitment to changed practices through commitment of resources and organization-wide messaging, training of supervisors, and active support of coaching staff.
Engage a trauma-informed care expert to assess organizational practices.
Assess your organization’s racial equity approach, both organizationally and at the staff level. Work with a racial equity organization or consultant to improve organizational practices.
- Identify a local organization engaged in coaching to learn how it approaches the work, the benefits of coaching, and the difference between coaching and case management in approach and results.
Examine ways for staff to incorporate elements of coaching, such as the strength-based approach to families that recognizes families as experts, particularly when funding limits the ability of your organization to fully adopt a coaching approach. Incremental changes often lead to larger changes over time.
- Train staff in coaching approaches, as well as motivational interviewing and other goal-setting tools and practices; help staff to balance, when necessary, case management and coaching roles.
Provide training for staff in trauma-informed care approaches to families.
Provide implicit bias and other kinds of staff training to support staff in understanding their own biases and the context of institutional racism.
- Identify how to reconfigure your space to provide privacy for families when coaching.
Assess whether your organization can improve access and safety for families, through transportation supports, changing hours of operation, or other practices.
TO MOVE FROM A MORE COACHING MINDSET FOCUS TO A MORE FAMILY-CENTERED COACHING FOCUS:
- Identify how moving to a family-centered coaching centered approach could benefit the organization through visiting family-centered programs (many Head Start, Nurse-Family Partnerships, and others have a coaching approach) and undertaking a set of discussions organization-wide to identify the value-add;
Expand the definition of family to incorporate a parent-defined family structure.
- Ask families what services they need and how they would prefer to receive services, including coaching.
Identify possible approaches to family-centered coaching, including identifying funding stream constraints, potential partnerships with external organizations, and existing gaps in services for the whole family.
Align internal services that could support family-centered coaching by mapping the services provided and how families access them, and then identifying strategies to streamline them (with parent input to ensure validity); convene cross-department teams to identify areas for collaboration.
Support supervisors in their hiring and management practices to adopt a family-centered coaching approach.
Partner with other organizations offering key family-related services you have identified as essential for families.
family- Centered CoaChing approaCh
- Examine current coaching and case management practices and put into place strength-based, goal-focused training for coaches and other staff that supports both staff and families.
- Create a safe space equipped with toys and books for children near where coaching will occur.