Exploring ‘People Development’

The secret is in the application

I’ve been exploring the notion of ‘People Development’ for one reason or another this week and found myself penning my own little model. So I’m putting it out there for review, reflection, critique (for betterment not for harm) and future iteration… I invite you be a collaborator in the evolution of this thing… or just tell me it’s rubbish…but nicely…

What started me thinking about this was a question from Chris Porter a friend and experienced Coach Developer with British Boxing….

What does it take to coach…?

And with this it made me reflect on the English Institute of Sports Marta of…

What does it take to win…?

So this took me to…

What does it take to me you…?

This is the you that you are now, the you that you would like to be, the you in your work space and the you in your home and leisure spaces… What effort, energy, investment, cost does it take to be all the versions of self…

So here’s the model

In working with and supporting the development of people regardless of role, situation, stage of development context we must:

strive to understand people and with this strive to help people understand themselves (the whole self in all sorts of places).
Who they are, how they work, what they want to achieve.

This perspective has formed the basis of a model which is intended to help explore ‘people development’ – from a holistic sense.

Working from the centre outward I firmly believe we should start with questions associated with…

Who do you want to BE…?

Asking people ‘who do they want to be’ will delve deeper than simply asking who are they an what do they wish to do. You may start with really open questions like:

Let’s explore what it takes to be you in all walks of your life e.g. As a coach, parent, employee, friend etc

It may be helpful as the facilitator in this conversation to consider framing questions around:

  • What would you want you mom to say about you
  • What words would your child use to describe you

Switching between the ‘future’ you and the present ‘you’. Is there a gap, is this gap of importance (as it may not be). Simply taking time to acknowledge the different sides of ‘you’ will help give a full context and rationale for what comes next.

The next step is to consider

What do you want to Do..?

With your life, with your time, with your work…

From a work perspective this is not about simply doing stuff (the jobs and task of others), its intended focus is on ‘how’ you do your work.

How the ‘you’ that has been described is played out in your actions and behaviours as a person in work, at home etc… do they match, if not why not.. how big is the gap, do you want to bridge it, who can help, what do you want to do alone or with others to make a shift. Should you want to make a shift.

We finish with…

What do you want to HAVE…?

This is not as simple as possessions or assets as such, its less about the ownership of something and more about the ‘achievement’ that sits behind having ownership. So what is it that you want to have, hold, achieve (deeper longer lasting feelings)… are you deliberately working toward this, what are you doing to focus on the endeavour and achievement over ownership.


The model is ok and with a bit of work/example questions this could be a greater workable tool. However right now it needs testing… please engage and share…

What do you want to ‘BE’

  • What does it take to be you…..

What do you want to ‘DO’

  • How do you live your desired self through home, work etc….

What do you want to ‘HAVE’

  • What achievements do you want to be proud of….

We must remember this is only a model and the trick is not sticking fast to any rules but playing with it, to suit your situation or your clients situation. How it is used is the magic…

Kurt Ewald Lindley – looking for people’s reflections