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Chapter 2 - EGM

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GROW as an acronym

.The GROW model of coaching has been designed by Sir John Whitmore and is central to his best-selling book ‘Coaching for Performance’. This coaching model can be used to structure mentoring conversations. In a 2009 article, John Whitmore claimed that Max Landsberg coined the name GROW during a conversation with Graham Alexander and that Whitmore was the first to publish it in the 1992 first edition of his book Coaching for Performance. Landsberg also published it a few years later in the 1996 first edition of his book The Tao of Coaching. Elsewhere Whitmore said that the model had been in use for some time before it was given the name GROW. Alan Fine's 2010 book You Already Know How to Be Great claimed that Fine had codeveloped the model with Whitmore and Alexander. Other (later) similar models include collaborative helping maps in family therapy and Gabriele Oettingen's WOOP model. (1)


Define a clear and specific goal that we want to achieve.


Assess the current situation, including any obstacles or challenges that may be preventing from achieving the goal.


Brainstorm potential solutions and strategies for overcoming the obstacles and achieving the goal.

What is to be done?

Identify any actions that need to be taken and create a plan for moving forward, including a timeline and accountability measures.


WOOP as an acronym

.WOOP (an acronym for Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan) is a scientific strategy that people can use to identify and fulfill their wishes and change their habits. It is a combination of two self-regulatory strategies: mental contrasting by psychologist Gabriele Oettingen and implementation intentions by psychologist Peter M. Gollwitzer. Mental contrasting contributes the “WOO” part (Wish, Outcome, Obstacle) in WOOP, whereas Implementation Intentions contribute the “P” part (Plan). (2)

Mental contrasting

Mental contrasting (MC) is a self-regulatory strategy to change cognition, emotion, and behavior. It was introduced introduced by psychologist Gabriele Oettingen (New York University, University of Hamburg) in 1997. It enables people to discriminate between feasible and unfeasible wishes and concerns. This, in turn, strengthens wish fulfillment and goal pursuit when expectations of success are high, and weakens it when expectations of success are low, thus allowing people to adjust their aspirations or pursue alternative more promising goals. In mental contrasting, you first positively fantasize about a wishedfor future and then mentally elaborate the current reality that stands in the way of realizing that future. By imagining the future and then imagining the critical obstacles of reality, people understand that in order to realize the wished-for future, one has to act on the current reality.

Content sources
(1) Wikipedia - GROW model - 2023
(2) Wikipedia - WOOP (scientific strategy) - 2014



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