Continuous changes in technology, communication, and globalization has made the business environment highly dynamic. Higher mobility with frequent job shifts, and limited training, leaves the executives grappling with issues they may not have faced before. Executive coaching comes to play an important role here particularly for leadership development of the executives. Definition: Coaching is defined as a formal one-on-one relationship between a coach and a coachee, in which the two “collaborate to assess and understand the coachee and his or her development needs, challenge current constraints while exploring new possibilities, and ensure accountability and support for reaching goals and sustaining development.” Courtesy: Center of Creative Leadership. Executive Coaching can be used to address a variety of leadership and work-related issues including performance; managing teams, engagement, or career-related issues such as career advancement, transition, or developmental opportunities.
Who is a good coach?
A good coach has an approach that focuses on personal growth, uses creativity and intuition, and helps find solutions, particularly coaching high performers. Capable coaches are not only good listeners, but they are also good strategists and people with a vision who use their skills and knowledge to help their clients realize their true potential. Coaching Tool Kit Coachee-centered focus
• Facilitator & guide
•Utilizing Coaching models/pathways
A good coach has a range of practices to help the coachee grasp the organizational context and issues. This includes having a perspective on the key drivers, the organizational structure and role expectations. The coach must understand the pressures of the coachee’s job and the organizational hierarchy, as well as context. Executives/Business Leaders at the highest levels of organizations have very complex and also unique problems. To support these needs, a good coach needs to conceptualize things quickly, understand the context, to think through complexity, “connect the dots” between their observations, anticipate changes and 42 hunt-partners.com the transformation/breakthrough sought. Interestingly, in most cases clients want to focus on immediate results. As coaching continues, the focus slowly moves to ‘life’, ‘passion’ and ‘authenticity’ and becomes more strategic. As the coachee becomes more self-aware, the focus of coaching shifts to more in-depth issues. Traits of a good coachee Apart from a good coach, the other most important element for a good coaching engagement is the readiness of the coachee, his/her coachability. Change readiness and being actively engaged in the process contribute to making a person coachable. Coaching duration & mode The typical duration of a coaching engagement is between 6 to 12 months. The preferred mode of engagement still continues to be face to face, although several coaches now use the video/phone.
Key factors leading to coaching success:
• The executive’s motivation and commitment to change. Executives who get the most out of coaching are those with a fierce willingness to “learn,” “evolve,” and “be vulnerable.”
• The support of the company. Firms must be committed to their executives’ progress and must truly desire to retain and develop the coached executive. Buy-in from senior management is crucial.
• Clarity of goals. Whether the goals of the coaching engagement are for developing leadership behaviour or for facilitating deep organizational change, the company, the executive, and the coach all need to be clear from the start about the desired outcome of the investment. Coaching is becoming more acceptable and slowly moving to mainstream, helped with the new perception of the practice as one of positive talent development rather than one of behavioural correction. There is also a growing recognition that most executive development is achieved through customized & individualized learning rather than through classrooms. It is just a matter of time before getting your personal coach will be considered a badge of honour.