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Does a training coach need to have been a better player?

Andy Archibald
Negotiation Coaching Tennis1
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A summer of sporting events is nearly upon us, and as a fellow Scot, I am looking forward to Wimbledon in particular, hopeful that Andy Murray can roll back the years and have a strong tournament in what has been an incredible career.  

Earlier in the year, I took a fork in the road of my own career and moved into negotiation skills training. Like many of us perhaps do, I thought of myself as a good negotiator already. Only when I spent time on the Scotwork course as a participant, being coached and challenged by an expert, did I realise how I could be better.

And so, I wanted more and joined Scotwork.

Becoming a negotiation skills consultant at Scotwork and being approved to coach clients is a rigorous internal training programme, a process I am currently going through. A coach must learn the framework and skills we teach, observe the other coaches in action, and develop the skills to provide game-changing critical feedback in real-time.

And like any other skill, it's something that we practice regularly to continue improving.

As I move towards becoming a qualified negotiation skills consultant, I have found myself reflecting on my many experiences negotiating, and whether I needed to have been better in the past myself than those I will be coaching going forward.

Or, asking the same question a different way and bringing in a sports element to it, "Does Andy Murray's coach need to have been a better player themselves to make Andy better now?"

Ask ten people, and you might get ten different answers.     

The point is, no matter how good the coach is or was at playing, they are not there to be better than the player. 

Instead, their role is to identify where the player can improve now and going forward. Everyone has different areas where they can improve, and the coach can identify what they are and how to achieve them.

That's why athletes like Andy Murray work with coaches. Already a class player and great returner, it was by working with coaches that he was able to iron out weaknesses in his game to become world no.1.

And it's why our clients choose to work with us. No matter how much negotiation you've done or how good you think you already are, you can always get better. And our negotiation skills consultants can work with you to do that, both virtually and face-to-face.

Talk to one of our negotiation experts today.


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