His New Yorker article is not only of interest because of who wrote it and what it is about but because it relates to teaching. The main steps in getting certified as an approved teacher in the K-12 schools are taking courses and student teaching. In the latter, the student is somewhat of an apprentice in the classroom of an experienced teacher. In many teaching positions, observers may watch one's teaching and note items they think could be improved. So, having a professional coach is part of both beginning and some advanced teaching.
Gawande explains in quite clear terms the difficulties of including a coach in something like a surgical operation where there has typically been none. Actors and singers often make use of coaches but a coach for a surgeon is a new thing. He reports his patient did not seem especially comforted to hear that her surgeon has a coach standing by. We have life coaches and sports coaches. We don't expect that even professionals will be beyond benefiting from having a coach. It may be the coming thing and indeed lead to better performances and less burnout.
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