Many of my clients begin their coaching sessions unclear about what to expect from our work together. Inevitably, they all ask – what is leadership coaching? Some clients expect a prescribed curriculum that outlines key principles and best practices in leadership development. Others believe that the sessions will provide a safe space to share their frustrations. Others think the coaching sessions will find them a new job. While others want help navigating challenging relationships in the workplace.
In truth, all of them are correct. Leadership coaching is an individualized approach to supporting each clients’ growth as a leader. We work together to identify how each client wants to develop. No two coaching engagements are the same. Similarly, even when clients are working on developing the same skill, the outcomes are never the same.
So how does all this work? During a 10-week series of sessions, I guide my clients through a series of direct questions to help them identify the areas they want to focus on to grow as a leader. Once they’ve chosen their area(s) of focus, I support them in setting short and long-term goals so they can make progress in developing as a leader.
One of my first clients set a long-term goal of advancing in her career. She set short-term goals of learning how to be noticed by her supervisor and improving as a manager. As we worked together, she discovered that by developing her self-confidence and becoming more self-aware a strong leadership presence emerged naturally. As a result, she was able to nudge herself to be noticed at work and begin to plan her next career move.
At the end of our work together, my client shared the following.
First, I feel like I have grown as a person. Secondly, I have discovered and made clear goals about who I want to be as a leader. And lastly, you have helped me set some long- term goals that are going to guide me towards becoming the best version of myself as a person, team member, and leader. Working with you has made me a better person and I will be forever be grateful for that! Thank you!
Another client of mine summarized our work together with this statement.
It’s interesting to me that in the past I thought personal “coaching” was self-help BS. I was dead wrong. Sorry to be so blunt, but I have to admit that I could not have been more wrong and have been missing out on a path to personal and professional leadership development for some time.
Through leadership coaching, I work closely with my clients to help them to discover how they want to develop as a leader, gently push them to set goals, and nudge them to follow-through on the actions they set so they can meet their goals. Leadership coaching for my clients is a guaranteed path to develop as a leader.