The TGROW Coaching Model

Whilst the GROW coaching model is applicable to a wide variety of situations, the eminent coaching guru Myles Downey felt that an additional element would make it more pertinent in the environment of organizations.


Downey felt that the first element of a coaching model should be 'Topic,' creating the acronym TGROW. This TGROW Coaching Model Template helps you to monitor the progress of coaching based on the TGROW model by keeping a record of the goals obstacles, commitments and timescales.

The coaching TGROW acronym stands for:

Topic - this covers the wider environment that impacts on the specific issue to be addressed through coaching. It will reflect the level of importance the issue has within that wider area and the impact it may have on the coachee's long-term aspirations.

Goal - a specific measurable endpoint that the coachee wants to attain.

Reality - the current situation the coachee is in now and all the issues he or she is facing.

Obstacles/Options - what is stopping the coachee attaining this goal - obstacles - and what 'options' are available to the coachee to resolve this issue.

Way forward - the required steps needed to execute the chosen option and attain their goal.

Downey's reasoning for making 'Topic' the first element of his coaching model was the need to have an appreciation of the environment the organization is in.

This wider picture enables you, as the coach, to understand the 'context' of the issue to be addressed through the coaching. Once the context has been defined you can help the coachee to set appropriate goals that are motivating for the environment they work within.

For example:
An organization is in a highly competitive market where customers have come to expect next day delivery. Orders are being canceled and refunds given when the delivery does not arrive the next day.

Your TOPIC is Customer Service within your organization.

Your GOAL could be to reduce cancellations and the refunds from the current 10% of weekly orders to 1% within 3 months.

This enables you to understand the environment that your coachee, who is the Customer Services Manager, is currently in and why the goal above is so important to that individual. For instance, the manager's annual bonus depends on keeping the percentage of cancellations within strict limits. It could also impact the track record required to gain a promotion. These details also give you the reasoning behind the coachee's motivation to change.

The sort of questions you would ask to help the coachee define the 'Topic' element would be similar to those listed below:

• What area or areas are you concerned about?
• What aspect of your role would you like to talk about?
• What is important to you?
• What does this mean to you?
• What areas do you want to address?
• What is behind this?

Some have felt that these models have a tendency to keep on drawing the coachee back to the problem rather than move their attention on to finding a resolution. This view led to the development the OSKAR coaching model.

You may also be interested in:
Management Coaching Skills and Models | Coaching and Active Listening | Asking Questions in a Coaching Session | Coaching and Goal-setting | Giving Feedback to the Coachee | Building Rapport with the Coachee | Demonstrating Empathy and Using Intuition in Coaching | Coaching Models and 'The Inner Game' | The GROW Coaching Model | The OSKAR Coaching Model | Organizational Barriers to Coaching.

Key Points

  • The TGROW model covers the wider environment that impacts on the specific issue to be addressed through coaching.
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