Archive for May, 2009

May 26, 2009

How to be “Coachable”

So, you finally decided to give coaching a shot. Good for you! I have noticed that the issue with choosing to get a coach or not has more to do with trusting yourself to really leverage coaching, than the issues of time or money.

Here are some ways to make sure you get what you came for.

• Work with your coach to articulate exactly what you want- be specific. If this is difficult, on an ongoing basis hone your coaching goals with your coach until they are very sharp, distinct and measurable. Do not move to strategy or plans until this is clear.

• The conversation should be 80% you talking and 20% coach talking. However, let your coach guide the conversation. In other words stop on occasion and let the coach ask some probing questions. Let go of control.

• Do not tell stories; we do not need the whole story to coach you. This can really drain the time away from a session. We need to know what you want, why you want that and what are the barriers.

• Practice making your point in the coaching conversation.

• Suspend and let go of judging yourself, your results and your coach. Curiosity, creativity and unprecedented results occur in an environment of “no judgment”.

• Be willing to be uncomfortable and think outside the box.

• Coaching is a process, not a one time deal. The momentous process of engaging in a provocative conversation over and over is what creates the break through result. Stay committed to the process, it works.

• In coaching focus on “who you are being” as well as “what you are doing”.

• Maintain the integrity of the relationship. In other words:

1. Keep your word and acknowledge breaking your word when you do.

2. Let your coach know if conversation or process is not working for you.

3. Turn in your promised deliverables; they record and maintain the structure of your program.

4. Stick to your coaching schedule as much as possible.

5. Clear the deck; remove all distractions.

6. You are 100% responsible for 100% of your goals, action plans & results. Your coach is not there to blame or give credit to.

Listen to some actual coaching calls here!

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May 21, 2009

ICF Global Coaching Client Study

The main purpose of the ICF Global Coaching Client Study is to generate a broad scope of reliable data on those individuals who have experienced professional coaching and the results they achieved from it. More specifically, the key questions this study is designed to answer are:

􀂅 What is the demographic profile of coaching clients?

􀂅 What are the characteristics of the coaching experience?

􀂅 Why do clients seek coaching services?

􀂅 What does the decision making process for choosing a specific coach look like?

􀂅 What are clients’ perceptions of the industry and the service it provides?

􀂅 How do clients evaluate their experience?

􀂅 How are clients benefiting from the coaching experience?

􀂅 What is the return on investment (ROI) from coaching?

May 20, 2009

June Coaching Tip for Managers

Assumptions can be the downfall of an otherwise great manager-coach. It’s easy to think we know what someone needs or we know what someone will say. I have discovered that when I ask a few more questions I am much less likely to make this mistake. If this is you, here are several questions to add to your tool kit.

Questions for clarity- Eliminate assumptions

1. What do you mean by that?

 2. It seems as if you are saying ________? Did I get that right?

3. Say more about that?

4. How is this different?

5. Anything else about that?

6. What do you think it could be?

7. Tell me more.

8. What else?

May 18, 2009

Leading change -Session 3

We played with the value of understanding our emotions today. If emotional intelligence is a determining factor in leadership, where am I with that? How do I improve my emotional intelligence? What about the idea that emotions have no place at work? What if we have been ignoring a very big part of what makes an organization, community or business healthy and functional?

We explored being in a leadership state and what gives us access to that. An ongoing discovery through out the program.   

We jumped into a conversation about integrity:

Integrity- from the Latin root word integer – to be whole and complete.  The leaders on the call were reflective and compelling in their ability to dig and look at themselves. I am continually inspired!

May 6, 2009

ICF Global Coaching Client Study

Enjoy reading  this insightful and well done survey. The main purpose of the ICF Global Coaching Client Study is to generate a broad scope of reliable data on those individuals who have experienced professional coaching and the results they achieved from it. More specifically, the key questions this study is designed to answer are: 

􀂅 What is the demographic profile of coaching clients?

􀂅 What are the characteristics of the coaching experience?

􀂅 Why do clients seek coaching services?

􀂅 What does the decision making process for choosing a specific coach look like?

􀂅 What are clients’ perceptions of the industry and the service it provides?

􀂅 How do clients evaluate their experience?

􀂅 How are clients benefiting from the coaching experience?

􀂅 What is the return on investment (ROI) from coaching?

Click here for report link

May 5, 2009

May Coaching Tip

Powerful Questioning is at the core of effective coaching. With one caveat– understand that asking a question that is appropriate to the emotional state, learning style, timing and situation is as important as the actual question. This takes effective listening, skill and practice.

Elements of a great question:

  • They are clear and direct.
  • They are non-judgmental.
  • They are transparent– no motive.
  • They are real and have the best interest of the employee in mind.
  • They are inquisitive and keep the employee thinking and in curiosity.
  • They are based in the present and keep the employee in the ‘here and now’ versus the ‘why’.

Why ask questions instead of give directions?

  • Your answers are old answers and they work for you, not the person you are coaching.
  • If you ask questions, people will self-discover and take responsibility for their results. People really do like their own ideas better!
May 2, 2009

Leading Change -Second Session

Another great session yesterday. I introduced the concept that leadership is a mental and emotional state versus practices or behaviors. We explored how to identify when we are in a leadership state or in a normal state.  I am blown away by how much I am learning from the participants.

Our normal state is to be self-focused, comfort centered, externally motivated and distracted by outside influence.

The issue with this is that the world is always changing, we are always changing. Each moment, each day we are actually in some type of change and growth. Something is being born and something is dying.  We are always receiving signals that something has changed in our external world and that we should adjust to the change. In the normal state, we will all ignore or deny these signals. Typically, we start adjusting when something significant has happened and often, it is a crisis. When you are in the “state of leadership” you see and adjust to signals faster and with more clarity because you are present and on purpose.  

A leadership state is internally directed, people focused, purpose centered, present and supremely creative.

Someone in class saud it best “oh, when I am afraid of failure I am in my normal state” . brilliant!