What Does a Discovery Session Agenda Look Like in Coaching?

Your coaching discovery session agenda involves getting to know your potential clients and vice versa.  Preparing an agenda for this meeting is crucial to the success of the coaching relationship.   

Discovery Session in Coaching

The discovery session is not a coaching session.  It is typically a complimentary 30-60 minutes meeting set aside to get to know your prospective clients. It forms the foundation of the coaching relationship.  The discovery session can be pretty much compared to a meet-and-greet where the primary goal is to determine if you are suitable (the “right fit”) for each other.  It is about understanding your clients’ challenges and the goals they want to achieve.  It is about finding out what has been working for them and what hasn’t and finally showing your clients how coaching can help them accomplish their desired goals. 

 During the discovery session, your role is to ask pertinent questions (open-ended questions)  and allow the prospective clients to respond.  Based on their responses, you will be able to identify their struggles and what you and your clients want to see happen next in the coaching process.  Examples of questions asked during the discovery session include What are your goals? What are the challenges you are facing at the moment? What are you hoping to get out of coaching, etc.?

 Coaching: Discovery Session Agenda 

As mentioned earlier, the discovery session forms the foundation upon which the coaching relationship is built. Therefore, you want to make sure your agenda for the discovery session covers all the relevant things that will make the session a success. The discovery session agenda is created to highlight how both parties are going to work together (i.e., the coach and client) and to outline what the next steps will be in the coaching relationship.  

The Agenda for a coaching discovery session should involve the following:  

  • Reviewing of assessment or questionnaire submitted by client via email or website prior to discovery session. 
  • Building rapport and trust (i.e be focused, actively listen, provide affirmations, show empathy etc.).
  •  Educating clients on coaching goals and terminology (applies mostly for first time coaching clients)
  •  Explaining the coaching costs and the options available.
  •  Creating and providing the appropriate coaching tools such as Vision, Values, Wheel of  Life, etc.
  •   Establishing goals – Creating clear goals is an essential part of the discovery session.  It is important for clients to know that even though the coach will be assisting them in reaching their goals, they are responsible for their own progress. 
  • Establishing a Coaching Contract (Client at this point, has agreed to hire you as their coach).
  • Proceeding to the Next Steps ( Mutually agreed steps).

The discovery session agenda is crucial to the success of your discovery session.  Preparing an agenda helps you effectively manage the time and flow of the session.  When you do not have a discovery session agenda,  the chances of that discovery coaching session succeeding is extremely unlikely.  

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Margaret K. Olubiyi
Life Coach
Writer, Coaches Training Blog community

FREE Video Course: How to Build a High Paying Coaching Business

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