When I’m asked why executives hire me as a coach, I share that often it is because the leader recognizes there are better ways to deliver results using proven leadership practices, and/or the executive wants to hold others’ accountable in an effective manner. What they soon recognize however, is that coaching provides for a safe space to brainstorm options, to challenge status quo thinking, to create a personal action plan for him/her self and for the organization. Here are some additional benefits I’ve found:
30,000 Foot View– Executives focus on long-term goals, vision and mission to deliver financial results; executives create cultures with words and actions, and directly with the leaders they hire and support. Yet often, executives find themselves responding to fires, micro-managing certain functions, leading corrective action and customer complaint responses. A leadership coach challenges and reminds the executive his/her primary role: to inspire and influence, to model and to envision a great future; and to build a team of exceptional leaders. Looking at various situations with a birds-eye view, with an unwavering mission on strategy often refocuses where an executive chooses to spend time.
Safe Space to Challenge Mental Models – We all have fears, limiting beliefs and assumptions, we all have an inner critic (mind talk) that stops us from optimal performance. Even the most exceptional,successful leader has doubts. A coaching relationship provides a trusted, non-judgmental advocate who will challenge these limiting thoughts.
Creativity from Chaos– Finding patterns, celebrating successes, identifying strengths, creating a solutions-focused, creative workplace leads to exceptional results in terms of profits, productivity, quality, safety, engagement, individual accountability and team learning. Identifying the chaos(internal and external) that is holding a leader back and refocusing on exemplary leadership practices is what a professional coach offers.
Get Back Your Happy– So often leaders at all levels take on the emotions of their teams. As an empathetic, authentic leader, who cares about their employees, leaders often find themselves feeling drained and even sad/worried for others. There are tools however, that coaches use to help leaders cultivate empathetic non-attachment. From this lens, a leader can support individual needs, while holding individuals and team accountable for delivering results. From this perspective, leaders are better equipped to communicate authentically and care for others, while ensuring their own self-care is nurtured. I had a client this week, who shared with me,that he got back his happy because of our last coaching session. I thought that was a great way to explain this benefit of coaching.
Focus, Direction and ROI (Of Course) – Focusing on what is most important for organizational, team and individual success is a primary reasons leaders hire a coach. Doing this with ease and utilizing strengths is a key benefit from professional coaching. Moving from thought, to action, to results is a coaching driven expectation. Also, focusing on leadership development topics is individualized throughout this one-on-one relationship. Some ROI studies show: Manchester Consulting estimated 5.7 times initial coaching investment (Maximizing theImpact of Executive Coaching: McGovern, Lindemann, Vergara, Murphy, Barker,& Warrenfeltz, 2001)