Diagnostic Tools & Coaching

In our experience, much of the significant value of Coaching comes down to one key component – Self Awareness.

When we become aware of our strengths we can focus on playing to those strengths to achieve the outcomes we want.

On the flip-side, when we become aware of our ‘opportunities for development’ we can put measures in place to address these capability gaps.

A favourite ‘model’ of mine demonstrates the stages of competency a person undergoes, moving from being unaware of a particular capability gap, through to use of a particular skill as second nature:

    1st - Unconscious Incompetence
        2nd - Conscious Incompetence
            3rd - Conscious Competence
                4th - Unconscious Competence



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Coaching tends to come into play during the 2nd stage of this process, where people realise they have an opportunity for development but are uncertain as to what they want to achieve or how to go about it. Coaching assists the individual to move from that state of Conscious Incompetence through to Conscious Competence or even Unconscious Competence depending on the task at hand and time available. People will often find that, through coaching, they are able to achieve this Unconscious Competence far quicker than they thought possible.

Coaching obviously works best when there is a commitment to make change. For this commitment to be in place though, there needs to be self-awareness of the opportunity to develop, or Conscious Incompetence. So, how do we move an individual from that 1st Stage of Unconscious Incompetence to a place of self-awareness?

This is where diagnostic tools (otherwise known as psychometric tests, personality assessments and aptitude tests among other descriptors) come to the fore. The results from the administration of these tools will generally result in some level of self-reflection on behalf of the individual, and with the support of an effective debriefing process, lead to creation of the self-awareness required to create the development opportunity.

Coach & Co. considers effective debriefing to be a critical part of the administering of any diagnostic tool to navigate the often disappointing, unexpected or even confronting results. Debriefing is a crucial stage in moving the individual from ‘Unconscious Incompetence’ to ‘Conscious Incompetence’.

Common examples of diagnostic tools include the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), 360 Feedback and Emotional Intelligence (EQ) Assessment. Coach & Co. is an accredited facilitator, and advocate, of the following specific instruments:


Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) Step II
Self-report inventory focusing on how people prefer to take in information, arrive at decisions and orient themselves to the world.  It assists individuals to identify their unique gifts and enhance their understanding of themselves, their motivations, natural strengths and potential areas for growth.

Powerful self-report tool designed to measure behaviour that derives from interpersonal needs. It provides individuals with increased insight into and appreciation of interpersonal behaviours which in turn can lead to increased interpersonal effectiveness and satisfaction in working with or relating to others.

MBTI / FIRO-B Leadership Report
Assists in exploring and expanding an individual’s understanding of the leadership style they use in their organisation and how others might perceive and react to it. The report is based on responses to the MBTI and FIRO-B assessments.

Benchmarks 360 Assessment
Assesses competencies honed from a multitude of leadership experiences, providing managers of all levels of an organisation with an assessment of their leadership competencies. Also assists managers to:

  • identify capability gaps;
  • establish which specific work experiences are required to  develop critical competencies for success; and
  • identify possible roadblocks to career success


Multidimensional Emotional Intelligence (EI or EQ) Assessment
A next-generation assessment of Emotional Intelligence with several valuable and unique qualities that distinguish it from more traditional measures. The MEIA is a trait-based, self-report measure of EI with distinct coverage of all 10 components of Salovey and Mayer's (1990) influential EI model. The MEIA comes in both general and workplace versions.


As can be seen from the brief descriptions above, each of these diagnostic tools has relevance in different situations. An aspiring leader may benefit most from undertaking the MBTI / FIRO-B Leadership Assessment, whilst an established manager may benefit more from undertaking the Benchmarks 360 Assessment. A large organisation with an influx of graduates may view the Multidimensional EI Assessment as the best way of creating self-awareness within that group.

Each set of circumstances generally requires a tailored approach. Coach & Co. can assist you to determine which diagnostic tool (in isolation or combination) would most benefit your particular set of circumstances. We are happy to assist both an individual seeking to develop their own capabilities, and a team leader who recognises that their whole team would benefit from undertaking a particular assessment.

For more information about diagnostic tools, including the benefits, pricing and timeframes, please contact our Operations Manager, Simon Altschwager on 1300 788 678 or simon@coachandco.com.au, or refer to our website at www.coachandco.com.au.

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