Steve Jobs, Barak Obama, Angela Merkel, Kamala Harris, Richard Branson are among the some great and influential leaders. I often wonder if they were always like that and yet I know that none of these leaders were perfect from the first day. Their success can be attributed to constant learning, improving themselves and doing things differently.
These days CEOs and leaders are a lot more than the face. Jacinda Arden, Elon Musk, Tim Cook and so many others are pioneers and innovators; people who think out of the box and don’t fear trying new things. This is the kind of attitude that is required when our goals and vision are in our mind’s eye.
Moving towards those goals, visions and desires requires a personal investment of time, mental focus and actions to move forward. Coaching can be instrumental to develop and hone leadership qualities, learn to deal with challenges and to get the best from others.
Studies claim that coaching alone can increase productivity levels by a massive 86% and I see this as a reason to make coaching a core offering within the workplace.
Here are some of the main reasons why coaching serves as a powerful tool for leaders and CEOs:
The close-up view isn’t always perfect
When looking at things from a distance, they may seem completely fine; it is when we delve in deeper, that we notice areas which aren’t so perfect. A compromise in quality, a little delay in processing orders or a not-so-smooth procedure may seem like small instances yet there is a cause and effect which when compounded can cause bigger issues.
Coaching helps provide perspective, greater insight, and focus – we learn to identify and deal with minor issues earlier on before they turn into something much bigger. This shift in mindset helps prepare leaders and staff for the future and creates a culture which seeks to view things from different perspective to best serve the organization.
Regularly learning is key to always stay up-to-date
Career progression is a journey which teaches skills, lessons and leaves scars. It is these scars which I believe makes a leader better, makes a manager greater and prepares an individual for the future.
The skills we needed when we first embarked on the career ladder are very different to what will be needed today. Back then, our forte may have been operations, project management or finance and now the needs are likely to be different and more focused on how we can effectively lead teams forward.
The pandemic shed the light on gaps in our skillset, whether than is how to demonstrate empathy or having emotional intelligence.
Leaders require the ability to think and do things differently. Pre-pandemic, we would not have been so concerned about the digital body language and today, it is something which is regular spoken about. We saw that employees required leaders to support them in their lives more than in their day-to-day jobs, again these are new skills to develop and apply.
Over the last 18 months, I have spoken to many leaders to help them navigate the new world and the landscape which they found themselves in. It is these leaders who recognize that their own growth and development will benefit themselves and their people.
Investing time and effort does pay off
When was the last time you had a dedicated 60 minutes to talk about something which was on your mind? A conversation which was all about your needs, concerns or keeping you awake at night?
The most common feedback clients give me is that when they have a coaching session, they are given the opportunity to spend dedicated time to focus on core themes and topics. It is a space they believe as being sacred for them.
Often, being a leader equates to days which are nearly full and devoted to meetings, corporate obligations, innovation challenges, competitive strategies and so on. Setting aside time to think about business aspects can be a challenge so when in participating in coaching sessions, clients get more time. This allows clients to think about things which may not be possible when in office mode.
Philippe is the CEO and Co-Founder of Reach Outstanding. He is an award-winning executive coach who works with leaders on various coaching themes and topics.