Be Prepared – to Change! Do you plan for sessions and stick to them religiously, no matter what? If that is the case the chances are you are selling both your participants and yourself, short. Good coaching is not about sticking to ‘the plan’ no matter what – it involves being able to observe, understand, analyse and respond to what you see. In Coaching Tip 9 I talked about the need to adapt sessions to suit the stage of development of your participants; it is also important to be able to adapt planned sessions to respond to what you observe taking place at the time. If a planned activity throws–up things that you hadn’t expected or had perhaps overlooked, don’t ignore them – respond and change the session to accommodate the needs of the participants at that moment in time. They will benefit much more from your intervention and focus on relevant factors than from you simply following the session you had planned. Indeed you can anticipate interventions by improving your observation of key factors, and by having alternative games, activities, practices and skills up your sleeve – this in itself will ‘test’ you as a coach. Go on, be prepared to change – and reap the rewards!