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May 13, 2017

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The Right Executive Coach Can Help You Become a Better Leader

 

 

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.” -John Quincy Adams

 

Gaps in the Leadership Pipeline Indicate the Need for Coaching. According to a 2014 University of North Carolina leadership survey,[1] only 30% of senior leaders surveyed thought their firms had a strong leadership pipeline, and just 21% said they were satisfied with their company’s bench strength. The survey also showed leaders lacked confidence in their firm’s high potential talent; just 24% said their high potential people were “leadership ready.”

 

Leaders Inspire Others – but Who Inspires Leaders?

 

How can companies bridge the leadership gap?

 

One of the most successful approaches is Executive Coaching. Steve Jobs had a coach (Bill Campbell), and so did Meg Whitman (HP) (John Thompson). Executive Coaches have been instrumental to the success of Microsoft’s Bill Gates, Dell’s Michael Dell, Google’s Eric Schmidt, Ford’s Alan Mulally, and many other leaders and entrepreneurs who may not be household names but are prominent, dynamic business-builders.

 

Increasingly, high performing leaders in any field have an Executive Coach to help guide major decisions. Eric Schmidt, Chairman and CEO of Google, says that his best advice to new CEOs is to “have a coach” and notes “once I realized I could trust him [the coach] and that he could help me with perspective, I decided this was a great idea…”

 

Hear from this successful Chairman and CEO in this brief video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIiwAcnSN1g

 

Coaching: What It Is . . . and Isn’t, and Why Successful Leaders Have Coaches

 

Traditionally the business world associated coaching with crisis or transition management, but entrepreneurs have found Executive Coaches to be key success factors in becoming leaders who inspire the growth of their companies from one stage to the next.

 

Sometimes otherwise high performing leaders encounter difficulty in critical areas that may include:

  1. Building alliances

  2. Managing people

  3. Team building

  4. Adapting to change

  5. Change management

  6. Creativity

  7. Navigating the political landscape

  8. Bad judgment

  9. Self-absorption

  10. Doesn’t learn from mistakes

  11. Doesn’t fit into culture

An Executive Coach plays particular roles with specific characteristics, making coaching a unique yet systematic process.

 

Coaching Is:

 

Structured within the needs of the individual

Mentoring

Future focused

Results oriented

Personalized:

  • Formal or informal

  • Based on trust

  • Founded on listening and questioning to facilitate action planning and personal growth

 

Coaching Isn’t:

 

Consulting

Therapy

Collaborative

 

 A Harvard Business Review Research Study[2] of businesses that use coaches indicates that only a little over twelve percent (12.4%) used coaching to “address derailing behavior.” The majority (47.5%) engaged coaches to “develop high potential [managers] or facilitate transition.” About a quarter (25.8%) of the companies surveyed use coaches to “act as a sounding board”, and a little over fourteen percent (14.3%) used a coach for team enhancement.

 

Executive Coaching is particularly effective at helping leaders re-frame their thinking, but it’s essential to choose a qualified coach with “real world” experience.

 

Assessing “Coachability” and Identifying the Right Coach

 

An individual’s degree of “coachability” depends on his or her willingness to receive feedback and thereby learn how to do things better. While some people benefit from coaching more than others, there are those who are simply “uncoachable.” A qualified coach can tell the difference, and with the increasing popularity of coaching, it’s important to make sure a coach is qualified.

 

Executive Coaching is a distinct, definable profession. The International Coach Federation (ICF) has developed an Executive Coach Certification Program, based on the ICF’s definition of coaching “as partnering with clients in a thought provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.”

 

An Executive Coach certified by ICF or a similar recognized professional organization will:

  • Explain his or her coaching methodology

  • Provide testimonials

  • Offer a reasonable fee structure

  • Inspire trust and ensure confidentiality

  • Develop a rapport with clients quickly

  • Deliver coaching in a manner compatible with each client’s personality

Coaching Outcomes

 

A recent Forbes study stated that return-on-investment (ROI) for executive coaching was “…7 times the initial investment, and over a quarter of the coaching clients reported a stunning ROI of 10 to 49 times the cost…”3

 

An Executive Coach will assess the current situation and outline expected outcomes clearly. While outcome objectives are customized to meet the needs of each leader or high potential person in the context of the specific organization, outcomes generally include but are not limited to:

 

Individual

  • Stronger working relationships

  • More effective teamwork

  • Increased ability to drive organizational change

  • Greater capacity for critical thinking

  • Increased confidence

  • Ability to present ideas more effectively

  • Improved communication skills

  • Reduced stress

  • Healthier work-life-balance

Organization

  • Higher productivity

  • Increased employee engagement

  • Lower absenteeism

  • Improved employee retention

  • Decreased customer service issues

  • Reduced costs

  • Increased profit

  • Better customer service and retention

     

    The SourceOne Innovations, Inc. Process

 

As an Entrepreneur and Founder and President of SourceOne Innovations, Inc., I am an experienced, certified Executive Coach employing a process that has helped high level executives and high potential managers continue to evolve into leaders who inspire others. Ask your coach for their process. If they can’t articulate the “how” show them the door.

 

SourceOne Innovations works with each client to co-create an individualized plan.

This involves:

  1. Meeting with each client and/or sponsor to determine engagement scope

  2. Agreeing on outcome objectives and defining the coaching parameters

  3. Measuring baseline performance

  4. Identifying areas for change

  5. Formulating an action plan

  6. Developing benchmarks

  7. Implementing the action plan

  8. Following up with sponsor as appropriate (not all clients will have sponsors)

  9. Measuring results

 

If you or your company is ready to get started, call us now. With our guidance you will do more than meet your leadership development goals—you will surpass expectations. Due to our 40+ years of solid Procurement experience, we know what it takes to get a “yes” from the decision makers and will help you market your business and increase sales in 90 days.

 

 

 

References

 

 

 

[1] UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, “UNC Leadership Survey 2014: How to Accelerate Leadership Development, 2014

 

[2] Diane Contu and Carol Kauffman, “What Coaches Can Do For You?”, 2009

[3] Forbes, “Forbes.Com Reports on Huge ROI’s to Accelerate Leadership Development”, 2014

 

 

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