If I asked you to describe the changes in today’s business world, most would quickly point out that it is much more global than it has ever been. True, our larger organizations have been competing successfully in the global business arena for many years. Now, more than ever, even our smallest organizations are quite successfully doing business on a global basis. So, if business is changing, what are the implications for leadership and the kind of leaders that are required for continued success?
Today’s leaders require skills and competencies far beyond the traditional business skills. The command and control style of leadership that may have been successful in the past is not likely to achieve optimal results in today’s organizations. Today’s leaders need to be visionary, good at collaboration, good at partnering and be able to see the big picture. They must lead their organizations, large or small, through business environments that change quicker than the weather on a Winnipeg winter day, while achieving quick results.
Growing Leaders inside your Business
Good leaders are hard to find. As a result, important vacancies within an organization can remain unfilled for long periods of time while search and recruitment activities are underway. This can have a serious impact on the growth and success of the organization. One solution is to grow and cultivate leaders, at all levels, within your organization. However, this is often difficult for mid- or small-sized organizations that don’t have the time or the resources to dedicate to developing leadership talent. Increasingly organizations are turning to leadership or management coaching to help fill the void of leadership and management development.
The Role of a Leadership Coach
A good leadership coach acts as a catalyst or a facilitator. They help an individual identify their blind spots or shortcomings and help them find solutions. They act as a sounding board or a mirror to help a leader or manager develop strategies or approaches to challenges they face in the business. They often serve to provide neutral advice or commentary in a non-threatening manner, outside the spotlight of the day-to-day hustle of the organization. In short, they can contribute to a leader or manager’s growth and development while addressing areas for improvement.
What are common reasons to seek Coaching?
There are a vast number of reasons an organization might seek external coaching to assist a particular leader or manager. These often include;
- Preparation for major challenges such as expansion, downsizing, or reorganization
- Building and practicing new skills and competencies
- Preparation for a new or larger role
- Dealing with problematic relationships in the workplace
- Helping leaders and managers gain a different perspective on important matters
- Helping to improve individual and team performance
In any event, leadership and management coaching is undertaken to help with the growth, development and to improve the overall performance of an individual. It is not a negative or punitive step or activity.
Keys to Successful Coaching
There are three parties to a successful coaching initiative and each must play their part. The sponsoring organization must commit to providing the support to the individual who will participate in the coaching initiative. This means the organization will have to provide time and financial support for the coaching initiative. The individual participating in the coaching must be open minded and willing to seek and receive both constructive feedback and critiques. They must also be open to trying new approaches and to change. The coach must bring their knowledge, experience, patience and energy with a strong dedication and commitment to helping the participant achieve their goals. This approach to leadership and management development can help an organization grow and nurture leaders who will contribute to success in our ever changing business world!