3 – Closure and celebration

closure and celebration

“Our ambition should be to rule ourselves, the true kingdom for each one of us; and true progress is to know more, and be more, and to do more.” Oscar Wilde

Within a structured coaching programme, there is invariably a beginning and an end. However, some couples may decide to end the relationship ahead of the formal closure when the objectives have been reached or when the relationship has run out of steam or when it needs to be terminated due to unforeseen circumstances. Some relationships on the other hand continue even after the programme has ended. Once again it is up to coach / coachee to agree on this.

A more formal review should take place at the end of the programme, irrespective of whether the goals have been achieved or not. This is an opportunity to reflect on the results, celebrate successes, recognise learning. The important thing is that the relationship ends with positive feelings on both sides.
The end of the programme does not mean the end of the relationship. Many couples continue working together, meeting perhaps less frequently and more informally.
Very often it is at this point that many coachees consider passing on the knowledge and skills they gained by becoming coaches and entering into a new relationship.
The closure phase is both the ending and the beginning. You are ending the formal coaching relationship and beginning of the next stage of your development.
During your coaching engagement, an effective coach will ensure that your are equipped, enabled and empowered and will never do anything to make you feel dependent.
As your coaching draws to a close, you should have a plan of action going forward that continues your learning and growth. At this time, review your action plan and, as needed make changes or go through the entire cycle again.
A useful way for you to hold a closing briefing is the following guide:
1. Achievement of Objectives
This may already be clear to you, but it is worth reviewing the achievement of your coaching objectives. Here, you review the goals that both you and your coach agreed at the beginning of your relationship.
  • To what extent did you reach your goal(s)?
  • Using a scale from 0 to 10? (0 meaning no progress at all, 10 meaning goal(s) completely reached), how would you assess your achievement of your objectives?
The purpose, at this stage, is to focus attention on any part short of 10 and ask:
  • What specifically is it that you did not accomplish?
  • And, what has your coaching contributed to the progress made (maybe you started at 2 on the scale and now have reached a 7):
  • In what ways did the coaching help you make the progress you have made?
Moving ahead
  • What can you do to continue learning and growing from say a 7 to an 8?
  • What specifically helped you change in your behavior?
  • What do others perceive in this regard?
2. Coaching Success
Reflect now on the success of the coaching itself:
  • What three key insights you have learned?
  • What specifically are you doing differently now?
3. Coaching Process
Also reflect on the coaching process itself:
  • How satisfied are you with your coaching experience?
  • What in the process would you like to see changed?
  • Would you commit to this coaching process again? If so, why? If not, why not?
  • Would you recommend this coaching process to others? If so, why? If not, why not?
4. Feedback by the coachee
And give your coach useful feedback (best in a feedback sandwich) and potentially including:
  • Give honest and candid comments (not just compliments).
  • Express your appreciation for your coach’s trust and guidance (using their prefered language).
  • Review the “successful” as well as the challenging and difficult moments in the coaching process.
  • Reflect on your own role as coachee: Looking back, what would you have done differently?
  • Address unsettled issues and open topics you may need to work on in the future.
  • Suggest some kind of follow-up on your commitments
  • Bring official closure to the coaching process.