How We Want to BE…..Together


originally posted on Thursday, November 3, 2011


My brother and sister-in-law visited last weekend.  One of the topics we discussed was our long marriages- 26 and 30 years!

We chatted about our “baby” sister (there are 7 of us) “taking the plunge” this past summer and how challenging those first few years of relationship can be.

Mostly, we discussed that learning how to “be together” takes so much work.

Living with one another’s habits, pet peeves, communication styles, moods, and vulnerabilities requires listening, understanding, compromise, acceptance, and not judging.

We discussed how the “be together” is its own entity.

There is a name for this in coaching.  It’s called ‘Designing the Alliance’.  Coaches ask questions early on to determine how the coach and client want to “be together” in the coaching relationship.

This includes basic questions like “How do you want to be coached?” to more challenging questions like “How do you want me to interact with you when you have not completed something you agreed to complete?” and “Do I have your permission to be direct?”

The coach and client make a commitment to this alliance; this unique, designed relationship.

One of the many benefits from coaching is that clients learn how to design alliances in their lives–mindful alliances with a partner, a child, a manager, a work team.

In the work environment, what would it be like to have your manager ask you how best to interact with you and vice versa?

Designing Alliances is one of the first tools a coach utilizes when coaching in a business/corporate environment.

Designed Alliances:

Make communication more effective.

Demonstrate mutual respect for each other, even in the face of disagreement.

Keep emotions of anxiety and trepidation to a minimum.

Benefit not just the individuals, or team, but overall productivity.

Designing Alliances requires straightforward questions, deep listening, and trust.

Designed Alliances in all aspects of our lives.

Inner Progress.




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