Articles // January 24,2023

Coaching in times of ChatGPT: Human intervention cannot be replaced by AI where emotions are involved

By Author - Meenakshi Girish, Editor - Chandrani Datta

In the last couple of weeks there has been a lot of conversations around ChatGPT – an AI ChatBot that helps people find detailed answers to different questions. Like ChatGPT, other AI technologies are evolving at an astonishing pace, and businesses are starting to take notice. These powerful systems are being used to automate a wide range of tasks, from customer service and data analysis to marketing and sales.

As these technologies continue to advance, the question arises: What will be the impact on jobs that involve human interactions, like corporate coaching? To understand this, we need to delve deeper into how these tools are making a difference to all kinds of businesses.

How are these AI tools useful?

Businesses are using ChatGPT in various ways to automate their tasks. Some companies are using it to improve their customer service by training the AI to respond to frequently asked questions and provide personalized support.

Others are using it for data analysis, such as analyzing customer feedback and effectively identifying patterns and trends. ChatGPT is also being used for marketing and sales, such as creating personalized email campaigns and chatbot interactions.

How is coaching different as a skill?

Coaching is an area that involves human beings and their emotions. It may seem to be at risk due to the advancement of AI, but the emotional aspect makes corporate coaching indispensable in the world of AI. The ability to understand and connect with clients on a deeper level, empathize with their struggles and challenges and provide personalized guidance is something that can only be provided by a human coach.

Corporate coaching isn’t just about giving people a roadmap of solutions for their issues. It is the process of helping your coachee think deeply and discover solutions by themselves so that implementation of the solutions can be easier. This cannot be done by AI no matter how customized its responses are.

Many studies and statistics demonstrate the effectiveness of coaching in various areas, such as business, sports, and personal development.

One of the key findings includes a study by MetrixGlobal LLC that uncovered how good coaching leads to an ROI of almost six times the cost of the coaching. It could also lead to about 72% improvement in work performance. Another study by Manchester Inc. found that coaching leads to an ROI of almost three times the cost of professional coaching and a 44% improvement in work performance.

A Case Study:

This is the experience of a large retail company that struggled with high turnover rates and low morale among its sales staff. The company hired a team of coaches to work with its salespeople, and the results were impressive.

The coaching program focused on helping salespeople improve their communication skills, build stronger relationships with customers, and increase their confidence and motivation. As a result, the turnover rate among the sales staff decreased by 30%, and the sales team’s overall performance improved by 20%.

The success of the coaching program also led to an improvement in the company’s bottom line. The company saw a 14% increase in revenue as a direct result of the improved performance of its sales team.

The ROI of professional coaching can be significant, and the human touch and emotional intelligence that coaches bring to the table are essential to success.

3 reasons why ChatGPT can never replace human coaching

Coaching involves guiding and supporting individuals to achieve their goals and reach their fullest potential. It is a powerful tool that can help people navigate challenging times, and it is becoming increasingly important in the age of ChatGPT and other advanced AI technologies when humans are constantly on their screens.

However, while ChatGPT and other AI systems can provide valuable assistance in many areas, they cannot replace the emotional intelligence that is essential in executive, group and team coaching.

1. Connecting with your coachee

One of the most important aspects of corporate coaching is the ability to understand and connect with the individual being coached. Coaches must be able to establish trust and rapport with their clients and empathize with their struggles and challenges.

This requires a deep understanding of human emotions and behavior, and the ability to respond to them sensitively and appropriately. Many a times, the coaches’ emotional and personal experience also helps in finding a breakthrough with a coachee. ChatGPT and other AI systems are incredibly advanced in many areas, but they are not capable of understanding or responding to human emotions in the same way that different human coaches can.

They can provide valuable information and support, but they cannot provide the same level of understanding and empathy that is essential in coaching.

2. Personalized support for sustainable results

Another key aspect of group and team coaching is the ability to provide personalized guidance and support. Coaches must be able to tailor their approach to the unique needs and goals of each client. They must be able to adapt to the specific challenges and obstacles that each person faces and provide customized strategies and solutions.

ChatGPT and other AI systems can provide general information, but they cannot provide the same level of personalization and customization that is possible with a human coach. Different coaches can offer customised interactions based on their personal human experience, which is not entirely possible for a Chatbot, despite its learned intelligence. They can provide helpful advice and support, but they cannot provide the same level of flexibility and adaptability that is essential in coaching.

3. Facilitating growth and constant development

Finally, coaching is a human process that requires a human touch. Timely corporate coaching can be a powerful tool for personal growth and development, but it is not something that can be replicated or replaced by a machine. The emotional intelligence, empathy, and human touch that coaches bring to the table are unique and cannot be replicated by AI. In a world where employees are constantly engaging with different software and chatbots, coaches can help them to be in tune with their emotional and spiritual consciousness.

Jane, a business executive at a top business in Asia was struggling to close deals and build relationships with her clients. She turned to a leadership coach to help her enhance her game.

The coach, John, immediately noticed that Jane was lacking in confidence and struggled with communication. He knew that this was a common issue among B2B executives, and he realized that the key to helping Jane was to focus on building her emotional intelligence and understanding of human behavior.

John began working with Jane on understanding the emotions and motivations of her clients, and on building trust and rapport with them. He taught her how to read body language and respond appropriately to different situations. He also helped her improve her communication and to become more confident in her ability to close deals.

As Jane began to implement these techniques, she started to see results. She was able to connect with her clients on a deeper level and build stronger relationships. “I was once in a meeting with a prospect who was hesitating to sign a contract. I was able to sense the client’s hesitation and instead of pushing for the sale, I asked open-ended questions to understand their concerns. This helped them open up about their fears and reservations which helped me address them and close the deal,” she said.

This situational fluency could not have been achieved by an AI that provides generic guidance and suggestions. Jane was amazed at the difference that her coach had made in her ability to connect with clients and close deals. The story of Jane and John highlights the importance of the human touch in coaching.

ChatGPT and other AI systems are incredibly advanced and can provide valuable assistance in many areas. But when it comes to coaching, the human touch, emotional intelligence, empathy, and personalization are a must. Therefore, human intervention cannot be replaced by AI where emotions are involved.

It is never too late to begin and enhance your skills. With a quality coach backing you up, you can emerge as a better leader and connect with your clients on a more personal level. Not sure how? Find out with us!

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In my career leading and building high-performing teams, I enjoy inspiring & coaching employees to unlock their potential for maximum performance. The team's success is my deepest delight. Global Coaching Lab provides the platform to put this into practice every day and fulfill my passion of making others great.

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