Numerous times in my 12 years of coaching and leadership development I've been asked by clients whether I think they'd have got to the conclusion they reach by themselves. I almost alway say 'yes'. When an answer needs to be found and layers of assumptions need to be let go to find it, that process will inevitably happen. Conversations will set you thinking, choices will present themselves, learning opportunities will occur, people will leave your team, others will join and gradually the vision you were holding will get closer and closer.
So what's the point in investing time and money with an executive coach if you're going to get there anyway? The answer is clarity and speed! Everyone learns a methodology of thinking and of working that comes to them with the education they've had and the experiences they've accumulated. Successful corporate leaders recognise that the process of acquiring more knowledge and refining what they know is ongoing (sometimes on a daily basis because change can happen so fast). A committment to lifelong learning inevitably sets the super-achievers apart from the pack.
Along with the specific wisdom you acquire you also collect specific assumptions and habits. They may have served you well last year or in your previous role, however today those tools might be the exact thing that's going to slow you down on your journey to achieving the big goal.
I had the priviledge very recently of talking with on of the UKs top masters squash players. He has national and international events coming up over the next 6 months and was talking about his training program. It included daily gym work for stamina, court work for accuracy, and sparring with other equally-levelled opponents for reactions and maintaining match fitness.
'Who's your coach?' I asked. 'I don't have one right now' he replied. (What?!!). I shared that 'all the training you're investing in right now is great for sustaining your fitness and perhaps even slightly improving you game over the next 4 months. However, by yourself you will quickly reach a plateau and you'll cease to be stretched by your sparring partners. When the World Masters arrive you absolutely want to bring your 'A' game. You can do more and be more by hiring a coach. This will allow a trained, experienced eye to observe your game from the outside, to make some small (or perhaps significant) changes and to partner you in defining and achieving some stretch goals giving you the best competitive advantage when the tournament season comes round.'
As much as this makes sense in sport, it makes the same sense in business. Directors, CEOs and team leaders can fast-track their growth and their 'business muscle' by partnering with a great executive coach. This coach isn't going to run your business day-to-day, nor will they put in the hours that are required to reach your ulimate vision. What they will do is to ask you some excellent questions, challenge some subtle assumptions, push you to stretch your comfort zone.
The knock-on effect of working with an experienced executive coach is that your clarity will grow, you'll have key conversations more suscinctly and confidently, you'll know who to draw closer to you and who to distance yourself from and instead of achieving your goals in a year or two's time, you'll notice them taking form in just a few short months. Leadership development is an ongoing investment in keeping key directors clear, motivated and action-orientated. If one of those leaders is you, the ultimate result is that your productivity soars and you achieve twice the success in half the time.
Jennifer Broadley is one of the UK's leading executive coaches. She works with corporate leaders, business directors and successful entrepreneurs. She specialises in CEO coaching, prosperity coaching and providing the most cutting-edge and intuitive leadership and personal success programs in the UK. Jennifer is passionate about the ongoing self improvement of the world's future business leaders – the way-showers for our precious next generation. She coaches, speaks, writes and runs workshops on 'The 7 Steps to Personal & Professional Freedom'®. You can buy her book of the same name from www.Amazon.co.uk You can call, email or message Jennifer from www.JenniferBroadley.com.