Updated: Oct 31, 2019
As a leader climbs the ladder of seniority, being effective requires the deepening of perspective. The leader needs that space. A coach creates it.
I am often asked "What is Leadership Coaching?"
My take is ICF inspired where a coach partners with leaders in a creative process to help them uncover new perspectives and ideas that can inspire them to optimise their ability to lead and drive their business forward. This can be done in one-to-one sessions, or in group sessions. It's important to note, though, that the dynamics and purpose of these sessions will be very different.
Leadership Coaching has more to do with holding the space for a leader's own creative process and discovery. So, it is not technical guidance, mentoring, consulting, career counselling or training, although each of these has a place in a leader's development.
In spite of its effectiveness, Leadership Coaching is a dimension of leadership development that has not been actively leveraged upon. Perhaps because it is not a one size fits all quick-fix standard knowledge transfer program. Yet, its effect is transformational, and its benefits far outweighs its cost. Consider the differences between great leadership and a mediocre one!
The core of the matter is that coaching deepens a leader's effectiveness, Most of the time, we rush through our lists of to-dos and jump into quick-fix actions. Why not? This has worked up to a certain juncture. Then the tipping point happens where a leader finds it hard to push through to the next level. Now, only now, an intervention is called for. But why wait till its broke?
The process of growth is a journey. A good leadership coach accelerates the realisation of one's potential, and helps the leader shift their game as they grow. Through one conversation at a time, a coach in a relationship of trust, works with the leader to dive deeper to expand his or her perspective and development. Once the new discoveries are gained, perspective shifts, leading to a transformation of the leaders approach.
Everyone needs a coach. More so, if you are on a leadership journey and when your behaviours and decisions impacts many. We need to bring out the best in our leaders. The journey would be much slower without the benefits of coaching.