K Ellis-Brush International Journal of Evidence Based Coaching and Mentoring 2021
Self-help technologies, accessed through smart mobile phones, employing coaching methods are challenging our understanding of the nature of coaching. Research findings suggest that an artificial agent can deliver positive outcomes for users through a conversational coaching process. It is a well-established axiom among coaching practitioners that the character of the dyad between coach and coachee is a predictor of outcomes. Accordingly, this study sought to explore the relationship between coachee and artificial coach and whether an artificial social actor can enhance a developable human behavioural capability. Forty-eight volunteers were given access to WYSA, an AI-based mental well-being chatbot app (“coaching app”) over an eight-week period. Results from the convergence of quantitative and qualitative findings have provided elements of coherence: that a working alliance did not develop with the artificial social actor yet, without this agency, self-resilience did improve in the majority of participants.