Re: Research re: LGAT's and Brainwashing
Date: July 02, 2018 09:23AM
Replying to corboy and kdag,
Let me tell you a bit more about what I saw in my 'field research'.
I live in Japan, and do not have access to the resources available in English-speaking environments.
I simply wanted to learn about coaching because it was that skill-set was becoming necessary to my work in Human Resource Management. Coaching, too, seem like a good solution when working across culture -- it wasn't a rigid program like training and it could be tailored to individual needs, and a particular organisation's needs. (I still believe this.)
Also, it is my nature to want to understand disciplines of whatever kind in great depth.
I had participated in executive coaching training in the context of a consulting firm, and it was quite rigorous and focused on assessment and competency-based development of leadership behaviors. It was ALL about talent management, and helping leaders move into more complex roles, international roles, roles in which they needed to manage regional, even global teams.
I knew that competency-based approaches were limited (not bad, just limited), so I wanted to explore 'other' takes on coaching. At this time, 2008>, the coaching craze had caught on in Japan, and many people in my world were engaged in coaching programs (U.S.-based). They were all looking for people to practice on, needed to log coaching hours to obtain their certificates. I said, "practice on me".
So, I vicariously experienced training programs outside my corporate world via these field studies.
I also committed to forming an English-speaking chapter of the ICF, did this thinking that this would be a place to share different ideas about coaching and to learn from others.
Although it did not register at the time, the first cult-like behavior I saw was among those people 'trained' by CTI. The "Coach Training Institute" was a CA entity, that went global with AMAZING speed, cough. I know now, CTI was an est/Landmark spin-off. These people literally had 'one' book they worked from, "Co-Active Coaching", and one methodology. It seemed very 'technique'y', programmatic to me, and I did not enjoy being the recipient of their method, felt DEHUMANIZED, felt silly, in fact. I gave them this feedback but it did not register. Really not too much registered with them about the field or their environment, or their client's needs AFTER CTI. These were intelligent, mid-career adults, who seemed to be caught up in something I did not understand.
I noted a change in their speech, body language, their EYES, how they engaged with others. They had very little interest in discussing coaching, per se, only CTI coaching. (Note, I had also, previously, investigated CTI on behalf of an employer firm, sat in on a two-hour teleconference, introductory session. I recall my first thought was, "that is a cult"....I dismissed this.
I could tell a similar story with another brand or two...
Our ICF chapter never really jelled, in my mind. It was impossible to have generic conversations about coaching among people trained in different 'programs'. While I was looking for commonalities in the approaches (and these existed), each faction saw their 'programming' as unique and superior. Also, the ICF, what we were getting from on-high, did not seem like a real organization to me, or did not seem to be fulfilling its mission statement. I chocked some of this up to the Japan environment, language constraints.
As I now see it, and I may not have all the pieces, many of these coaching entities were spawned by the same mind, or minds. While they might have looked different on the surface, the technologies were the same, and the outcome for participants was the same.
So, corboy, here we have a case of intense programming, extreme neurological re-ordering seemingly not organized around a specific individual, or individuals -- I actually wish their were more LEADERS in the field -- but around the technologies, themselves.
It is rare, for instance, to encounter an NLP'er who worships Richard Bandler. Many, only vaguely know who he is. They worship NLP, and the power they think it gives them.
I am research-oriented, will try to discuss research done by a particular coach, e.g. Goldsmith. If anything, the coaching community wishes to avoid discussions of research, that their 'religion' and 'practices' actually came from 'somewhere' are grounded in something tangible and data-based. THEY ACTIVELY AVOID THIS.
So, there are no gods, gurus, heroes, people to emulate in this world, ONLY THE TECHNOLOGIES. I can't say these people even have strong group affiliations, other than the ICF.
An idea that they are involved in a world-changing (on grand scale) activity.
A sense of moral superiority (extreme)
A total disconnect from the real-world things they could actually do to improve their worlds, i.e., the real practice of coaching
A low threshold for novelty, new ideas
No interest in data/research (breaks the spell)
No ability to self-reflect
If you see several hundred of these people in a room, e.g. at a conference, you REALLY understand. Coaching conferences, in my sad experience, feature almost no actual content. People like me cannot understand 'why' they are there. There seems to be no 'beef', nothing is happening. But, something is happening. They 'get it'.
I think the term "life coaching" is key to understanding what they "get". I see/saw "life coaching" as simply working with an individual outside the organization, working to clarify personal goals, career path, things like that.
They see it as "LIFE COACHING"...indoctrinating other people, in executive coaching engagements (paid for by organizations), or outside, private individuals, in their own programming...and, this is EST.
I have no idea how this has flown as far as it has in the corporate world and this is what TRULY terrifies me.
Factors would be:
A shift away from data-driven measurement of coaching effectiveness (I can tell you who has lobbied for this)
A now self-regulating coaching field (I can tell you who has lobbied for this)
ENDLESS bombardment of corporate decision makers with memes about coaching...this occurs in the media, at conferences, in the so-called literature.
The endorsement by Ph.D's...(last nail in the coffin).
I would really appreciate any reflections you have. Clearly this is a case of programming, but a refinement upon what was typical in early LGAT's.
As kdag observed, these entities are doing their own research, on-going, and adjusting their programming according to what they learn. Why is say it is SUBTLE.