Coaching Leaders to Thrive
Smart, dynamic organizations prepare their leaders for success by actively developing them, and coaching can be one of the most transformative, lasting ways to do it. Coaching helps leaders establish powerful, career-long tools for setting and achieving meaningful goals, managing with confidence and grace, and intentionally and continually creating the kind of culture that’s vital to success as individuals and as a company.
Is Coaching for You?
When you’re ready to take your leadership to the next level, you’re ready for coaching. The process can be particularly valuable for:
- Managers and executives in transition. Whether you’re new to an organization, you’re being groomed for advancement, or you’ve been recently promoted, you’re facing new responsibilities requiring fresh skill sets, and you’re likely to have more or different people reporting to you. To come this far, you’ve already proven that you’re capable and adaptable and could certainly manage on your own, but why not get a leg up? Coaching can be exceptionally beneficial during times of transition, and an investment in coaching for an organization’s most promising leaders can ensure that they’ll excel and thrive.
- Struggling leaders. Different times call for different leadership styles. What once worked beautifully for you may no longer be effective. Don’t flail and risk failing when coaching can take you where you’re at and move you to the dynamite person you know yourself to be—someone present, forward facing and vital in your role. Coaching can also help a leader to manage up or even manage out of an organization entirely if the time is right.
- Whole teams and boards. Perhaps meetings rarely start on time or stay on task, and agendas fail to encompass what members feel they should; maybe group relations feel strained, or people just aren’t working together as collaboratively and efficiently as they could. There’s a special advantage to engaging entire teams or boards in the coaching process. By working with groups, coaches can see threads between members; identify, break down, and tackle systemic issues; and guide them toward a transparency and efficacy they’ve never experienced.
- Individuals at any level wanting change. If you’ve lost passion for your job or industry, or you find yourself fantasizing about an entirely new career path, career coaching can bring you much-needed clarity and support in developing a realistic, workable plan to move you from where you are today to where you want to be. In addition, the coaching process can help you discover viable career options, build a better resume, engage in a fruitful job search, and land your ideal position.
What You Can Expect
Every person is unique and every goal is individual, so a quality coach will provide a highly tailored coaching program. The coaching relationship can be short or long term, but six months is a typical contract (renewable as desired). Initial sessions tend to be lengthier and more intense; you might meet with your coach regularly for 1 to 1-1/2 hours in person or on the phone for several sessions before easing off to every other week, every third week, or even once-a-month sessions. By then, you’ll want time between check-ins to put new ideas into practice and get a genuine sense of how you are progressing.
During the initial discovery phase, you can expect your coach to work hard to develop a deep understanding of you as an individual and of your role within the organization and what’s required to thrive in that role. The process may include a thorough exploration into your personality type and core behavioral traits; a 360-degree evaluation of your leadership competencies, including surveys and interviews with people who can provide invaluable feedback about you as a leader; and a strong situational analysis to determine the environment, culture and dynamics of your workplace and how you fit within and influence them.
Your coach will then ask the kind of questions that get you out of your own head to see a new view and develop a new interpretation of what’s possible as a leader. You’ll learn how to distinguish your perception of yourself as a leader from reality and how to leverage your natural state to manage with wisdom and centeredness. Together with your coach, you’ll determine and address the root causes of specific problems or performance challenges; weigh options and walk through decisions; role play difficult situations and challenging employee relations; and translate your own life experiences to the workplace so you always manage from a place of authenticity and strength.
Style matters when you’re looking for a great coach. You’ll want someone engaging and insightful, someone who inspires and energizes you personally and professionally. Look for an expert you can trust with confidentiality concerns and with whom you’ll feel confident to open up and explore strengths as well as opportunities for improvement and growth.
The coaching relationship is an open dialog. Your coach should be compassionate but direct, someone who connects with you and fits you but also challenges you and holds you accountable for the outcomes you want to achieve. A coach is your partner, working with you and supporting, motivating and strengthening you into the leader you want to be.
Your Best State
When you’re ready to envision your best state and then develop, refine and implement strategies to make it happen, you’re ready to Leap! Leap Solutions coaches have decades of leadership development experience, and we’re eager to put our expertise to work for you. When you partner with us, you’ll come away with vital tools for identifying and overcoming barriers, strategies for meeting and exceeding objectives, and interpersonal and management skills that will make your life as a leader more successful and rewarding than ever.