By Jeannette L. Seibly and John W. Howard, PhD
- Do you think of yourself as a leader?
- Does someone pay you to be a leader?
- Do you want to be a leader?
If your answer to any of these questions is an emphatic “Yes!”, ask yourself some more questions:
- Do you promote a vision, mission, and purpose for your company–yet no one follows you?
- Do you empower others–yet these same people criticize you?
- Do you allow ongoing conflicts among managers?
- Do you avoid admitting a mistake?
If you answered any of these questions “yes”, you are among the vast majority of us who could benefit from coaching! A good coach can be critical to any leader’s success. Listening to, even learning, theories and concepts will not necessarily result in leadership. Coaching provides real-time feedback, while projects and people issues are being handled. It can develop and strengthen solid leadership skills. Coaching accelerates growth and contributes to success!
A good coach can help you:
- Set and achieve goals! If you don’t know where you’re going, how will you know when you get there? To achieve results, you must set goals and develop a structure to track and ensure progress. Put together action plans and review them frequently!
- Be consistent! Maintain your commitment to fulfill your goals, even when “you’ve hit the wall” and it looks like failure may be imminent. This sends a very clear message to your employees. It says they can trust you in good times and bad. It helps them make better decisions, and keeps them in action.
- Work with and through others! This will help ensure that your results will be on time and within budget. Poor communication skills are a major factor in leadership failure. People are too often promoted for their successes, without assessment of their communication skills. Simply put, the higher up the corporate ladder you climb, the more people rely on your communication skills. A leader with poor communication skills must improve, or negotiate another position without people responsibilities. The good news: Good communicators are coached, not born.
- Listen to those with different ideas! Most people consider themselves good listeners, but they do not always hear the critical factors that keep customers and co-workers happy and satisfied. Knowing how to get a point across while listening to others, particularly when what you hear is unpleasant, can make or break your career!
- Handle conflict promptly. The sooner you’re able to resolve conflict, the less likely it will negatively impact your people, projects, and customers. Work will always include disagreements, differing points of view, and concerns that people bring from outside. The key is to resolve issues promptly, effectively and efficiently, while empowering the people involved to work them through.
- Being accountable for ALL the results, including your own growth, is a true mark of a leader. Being accountable entails managing details, and acknowledging results—both positive and negative. Let others take credit for a job well done.
As a leader, hiring a coach can accelerate your growth and success. You will see your weaknesses faster and more clearly, and develop your strengths sooner and more fully. The fact that you are open to coaching will inspire confidence in your co-workers and customers. If your goal is to be a good leader, start by hiring a good coach!
© Jeannette L. Seibly & John W. Howard, 2005-2011
Jeannette Seibly, Principal of SeibCo, LLC, Transform Your Business. We provide straight talk with million-dollar results. Contact SeibCo, LLC @ 303-660-6388 JLSeibly@SeibCo.com Jeannette is also the author of Hiring Amazing Employees.
John W. Howard, Ph.D., owner of Performance Resources, Inc. helps businesses of all sizes increase their profits by reducing their people costs. His clients hire better, fire less, manage better, and keep their top performers. He may be reached at 435.654-5342, OR firstname.lastname@example.org