How Do You Improve Being Coachable, Especially When You Don’t Want To?

“Why have a coach? Because a coach has you do what you don’t want to do so you can become amazingly successful!” Jeannette Seibly

We’ve all been coachable and uncoachable. It’s part of being human.

Being coachable: You listen for feedback from people regardless of your feelings about them.

Being uncoachable and challenging to work with: You refuse to listen to others even when they are great results-producers.

Why are you uncoachable? It could be your:

  • Readiness to hear the feedback or advice
  • Humiliation of what occurred (e.g., poorly done presentation)
  • Low self-esteem or ego
  • Workplace environment views coaching negatively
  • Need to do it your way or on your own

Regardless of your reasoning, it’s critical to develop your listening skills and be coachable.

The bottom line is that every successful leader, boss, and high-performance person has a coach! Think of the NBA, business leaders, and sales teams with excellent sales results. They know that while the advice and feedback may not be delivered flawlessly to their liking, it’s important to listen and be coachable. Setting aside their ego avoids costly errors, team conflict, and poor customer results.

How Do You Improve Being Coachable and Achieve the Success You Really Want?

Be Present and Make the Time. “Is it an appropriate time to talk?” For example, some bosses may call you when your kids are demanding your attention or you’re in a department store. When this happens, ask, “Can I call you back in ½ hour when I can hear you?” Then, make the call in ½ an hour! Why? When distracted, you cannot present what is being said and will overlook critical feedback details.

Listen to Feedback About You. Listen carefully when the feedback originates from a team member, customer, or executive. There is an important lesson to learn here. To be coachable, listen without defending your actions, words, or thoughts about the person who complained. Instead, a couple of questions to ask: “Can you be more specific?” and “What would you recommend that I do?”

Transform Your Mindset When You Make Mistakes. There will be days you don’t do your best, create team conflict, or say the wrong thing. When someone complains, your ego will feel the need to defend your actions and blame others for the results. Breathe! Apologize! Stick with the facts and not your feelings about the person, situation, or other factors. Instead, ask, “What can I specifically do to change the outcome?” Remember, your future career options require taking responsibility and being coachable!

Review All Project Results Before, During, and After. Too often, you’re open and ready to hear feedback when a project is working. But when a project has or is about to fail, you become defensive, stop listening, and turn it into a debate. Remember, there is always room for improvement. In preparation for these crucial conversations, complete this exercise: “What Worked?/What Didn’t Work?”

Seek Out Coaching When You Need Clarity. There is a myth that you need to know the answer before asking for help. It’s not true! Instead, be open to listening to the feedback and be coachable. For example, ask, “Do you have 5 minutes? I’m unclear what I need to do to make this project work?” Share the specifics about the goal and actions taken. Always say, “Thank you.” Even when you don’t like their answers be coachable. It could make the difference between successful results or failure.

Listen for the Gold … especially when the little voice in your head is chirping, “I don’t want or need to hear it.” It takes practice to master the skill of being coachable. In turn, you will accelerate your leadership development, relationships, and business results.

©Jeannette Seibly 2022 All Rights Reserved

Jeannette Seibly is The Leadership Results Coach. She has guided the creation of three millionaires and countless 6-figure income professionals. During the past 29 years, she has become an award-winning international executive and family business management consultant and keynote speaker. Still unable to achieve the results you need to keep your customers, team, or job? Don’t wait! It won’t get better without help! Contact Jeannette for a confidential conversation.

A Note from Jeannette about being coachable: you have one month left in Q1! BE COACHABLE! Make the time count and start practicing. Start by talking with a coach or boss about resolving a challenging situation or relationship. Then, get into action to transform the results! Still feel stuck? Contact me for a confidential conversation.

Being a top influencer in 2022 requires being coachable. When we are stuck, we can no longer influence others. To get out of this career-limiting trap, get into action today and grab your FREE copy of Eight Tips to Increase Your Ability to Influence.


Leave a Comment