The first executive leadership coaching session with a new client (!) – one of my favourite moments in a week / month. ❤️
The anticipation, the excitement – working with someone new, nervousness – building trust and developing a new relationship – and they are just my feelings!
To be trusted enough to share in someones aspirations and change and play a small part in helping them create new behaviours and processes to meet their expectations is a great privilege – I truly love the opportunity to work with leaders and managers through executive leadership coaching. I must admit, it is still a great surprise to me every time I work with a new client just how exciting the process is for me – just like the first time I worked with my first one-on-one client. I am a lot less nervous in my approach than then (!) – now the focus is a mostly on the client and meeting their expectations rather than seeking to remember what I would like to say.
In fact, one of the greatest learnings as an executive coach I have had is to get out of a clients way. When I firsts tarted working an executive leadership coach, I had come from a background of leadership and training facilitation. Not lecturing – still very much interactive and questioning with curiosity – but as the facilitator I led the discussion and had a framework for the content of the workshop. To compare the two – executive leadership coaching is like having the full curriculum of leadership learning in front of you, knowing you can teach any of them at a moments notice – and handing the order and importance of the content over to the students. After all, coaching isn’t about the lessons I want to teach and the order that I would like it – it is about what the client wants and needs in the moment to get the most out of themselves. And that may not be in the order that I learnt it – it is about helping a client forge a path for themselves, using my knowledge and questions as a guide.
In short, executive leadership coaching keeps you on your toes!
I truly applaud the leaders that I get to work with on a daily basis; who have set themselves a clear task to improve, recognised that they can’t fulfil in in the timeframe they want on their own, and seek out someone else to assist and get them there. It is a process I have undertaken myself on several occasions, and the feeling of working with someone new is still exciting for me – when I am on either side of the coaching fence.
That is why I wanted to share this short post.
For me, the benefits of working with an executive leadership coach far outweigh the fear / hesitation of working with someone new. Because I believe in the process of coaching, I have a coach myself. A recent coaching session with my coach provided me an opportunity to actually think without distraction – something at the time I didn’t know I needed but was incredibly clear to me afterwards. He didn’t solve my issue – he helped me clarify my thoughts in a logical way and actually ‘see’ the issue – and then I worked out the next step myself. I had most of the pieces to the puzzle already, but due to lack of clarity and focus, or being busy with other things on my mind, hadn’t taken the time to focus enough to get to the heart of the problem. I couldn’t have done this on my own – I was getting in my own way.
Executive coaching has benefitted me greatly – both as a person and as a coach myself. I thank those that have helped me along the way, and those that I will get to coach in the future.
Is Executive Leadership Coaching For You?