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Research skills & transferable skills

Doctoral Schools

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This is a two-day workshop on coaching by Dr Robin Lefèbvre (Grow2Excel).

Because most people would prefer to be coached via a non-directive coaching style, but are themselves more comfortable leveraging a directive style. Furthermore, the difference between leading, managing, coaching and mentoring is often unclear. Coaching is not merely a technique to be wheeled out and rigidly applied in certain prescribed circumstances. It is a way of managing, a way of treating people, a way of thinking, a way of being.

As a manager of others, you have two key tasks, delivering the results of the research/business group and growing your employees to become more effective in delivering the targeted results. Growing others can be done via various directive and non-directive management/coaching techniques. One of the most widely used coaching tools is the t-GROW (topic - Goal - Reality - Options – What) model. T-GROW is a simple and powerful framework for structuring and conducting coaching sessions that produce immediate results.

For whom?

  • Ideally, participants are young postdocs or senior PhD students with coaching responsibility. However, it is never too late to start coaching for growth.
  • There are 12 places available.


  • Explore and experience different coaching tools.
  • Learn and practice the non-directive (t-GROW) approach to coaching.
  • Gain insight into how to facilitate high performance in individuals.
  • Realize your potential to become an outstanding leader and coach.
  • Learn how to significantly improve employee engagement and employee-manager relationships by promoting a non-directive coaching approach.


Awareness – Participants will…

  • Have a better understanding on the difference between role like a leader, manager, coach,
    mentor, teacher.
  • Have a better understanding of different coaching approaches and when to apply them.
  • Have a good understanding of the t-GROW model and how to use it.

Skills – Participants will be able to…

  • Apply the t-GROW model for coaching.
  • To ask, listen and learn the underlying driver of coaches.
  • Drive growing the business by growing the people.

Course flow?

The course consists of 3 parts:

1. Individual pre-work.
There will be 1 – 2 hours of pre-work, based on personal interviews with colleagues and

2. A 2-day training: 2 days of 8 hours with a trainer, where 100% of time dedication is required.

3. 8 weeks of sub-team discussions.
The whole group will be divided in subgroups of 3-4 participants during the training whom will coach each other on getting more clarity on the training material. The same group will have the opportunity to continue learning up to 8 weeks after the training. There will be 8 weekly discussion guides for a 1-hour meeting available, to enable going deeper into the different tools from the training. The discussion groups will further be supported via an online discussion forum and a group facilitator to moderate the online forum and keep the drumbeat. All activities are on a voluntary basis, with online material to facilitate the discussions. The trainer will be available for questions on the forum.

Course materials?

  • PDF with pre-work material (email 2 weeks ahead of the course)
  • Training handout / reference sheet (handed out at the course)
  • Discussion forms and exercise material (online available after the course)


  • This two-day training will take place on June 12 and 13, 2019 - both days 9:00 - 18:00.


  • Campus Diepenbeek, building D, room A4


  • Registration closed since May 20, 2019.
  • As places are limited, registering does not automatically imply that you will be able to participate. You will be notified by e-mail in due time.

Acknowledged as?

  • DS BSH: category 'career management & personal development' - workshop on personal development
  • DS HLS: category transferable skills - one compulsory elective course
  • DS ST: category 'career & personal development' - one workshop on personal development


Don't we all think we have a decent understanding of what coaching means? At least I did. Turns out I hadn't been coaching, I had mostly been mentoring, teaching, and managing, which are all valuable, but different. Coaching for growth helped me to see which road to travel in priming someone for growth without being directive or giving literal advice. This felt extremely counterintuitive and uncomfortable at first, but after the two days of training I started to get used to it and I'm very glad to say I really acquired the basis of a new skill in two days (which I will of course practice and sharpen over time). I recommend this training to everyone, whether you're in academia or industry, or neither. Just knowing about the principles taught in this course can even make you a better leader, supervisor, colleague, friend, spouse,...
(participant in 2017)

We learned about the concept of coaching and the differences between mentoring, teaching, managing and leading. We learned different approaches to coaching and trained using them. It is also offered to maintain the training after the course through meetings with peers. We had a special section on feedback, because we asked for it. This was also very helpful due to the practical training. The training of discussed content was applied to real problems we have, which made the whole experience more valuable and realistic. The instructor did a very good job in explaining, observing and giving us feedback on our training. I recommend this to everyone, because you need it!
(participant in 2017)