Coaching to Become Better by Jim Johnson

coaching

Will your team get better just because they show up for work?  Doubtful.

Coaching is the only, sustainable way to improve your team.  Of course, your team needs training and communication, but coaching is the only way YOU, the coach/manager/leader, will be able to enable them to become better.

As a leader, you cannot rely on other leaders to improve their teams to compensate for weaknesses on your team.  Each team leader must dedicate themselves to team improvement.  Then, as a whole, your company becomes better.

Improve your coaching and you help your team members become better.  Then your team becomes better.  Your company (and your customers and communities) become better.

That’s a winning combination.

 

On the Road Again

Tomorrow morning, I fly to Denver where I’ll be giving two presentations at the annual NACCAP (www.naccap.org) conference.  I will be speaking on:

  1. “Right On” – working towards your “next level” opportunity while broadening your influence.
  2. Adding Value – discovering why this is so important and finding practical ways to do it.

I look forward to sharing, learning, and meeting the professionals at NACCAP in Denver!

NACCAP annual conference

Become Comfortable Outside of Your Comfort Zone

I am about to finish John C. Maxwell’s new book, No Limits.  If you have not read this book, order it now!  It will increase your capacity to lead and succeed!

Here’s an excerpt from the chapter on “Risk Capacity”.

“I knew I needed to develop a process to deal with fear, so I did.  It didn’t cure my fear, but it tamed it enough for me to keep taking risks.  It goes like this:

  • Identification:  Who am I?  I am a person of worth attempting to do something worthwhile.
  • Action:  What will I do?  Take action and do the right thing regardless of feelings.
  • Emotion:  How will I proceed?  I will allow my actions to shape my feelings.

My discovery?  Each time I acted with courage and did what was right rather than giving in to what I felt, my will overcame my fears.  My fears have never completely left me, but they no longer control me.”

No Limits

Why Coach? by Jim Johnson

I recently read some interesting/sobering facts:

  • Nearly half of managers spend less than 10% of their time coaching their teams.
  • In 2016, 87% of millennials say professional development or career growth opportunities are very important.
  • In 2016, only 37% of employees indicated they were “very satisfied” with their jobs.  51% said they were “somewhat satisfied” with their jobs.

So if this is true, how are you becoming better at coaching your team?  They desire effective coaching from you.  They really want to be “very satisfied” with their jobs.  They do!

Someone once said the following:

                                ” Coaching is helping our team members to think.                                                                                    To help them become conscious                                                                                                      of what they are unconscious.                                                                                                         Our default is to give advice.                                                                                                           We must teach people to think.”

More on this later…

To coach effectively, you also need to prepare to be an effective coach.

Where are you on this continuum?

developing

Becoming an effective coach starts with YOU, the coach.  How can you develop yourself?

  • Expose yourself to materials that will help you grow as a leader (books, blogs, podcasts, articles, conferences, one-on-one meetings with community leaders).
  • Network in your community.  Use resources such as LinkedIn to meet, connect with, and learn from other coaches/leaders. You can be exposed to great content that will help you grow.
  • Add value to those around you everyday.  Put what you are learning into practice.
  • Help your team become better by becoming a better leader.

Becoming a better coach means you applying your EXPERIENCE in order to demonstrate EXPERTISE.  I know a lot of experienced coaches/managers.  I know far fewer leaders who demonstrate expertise in coaching people.  Note:  expertise does not equal perfection.  No one on earth is perfect, so rid yourself of that goal.  But any of us – all of us – can become better and become experts.

As a coach, you want to move your team from the ranks of the experienced to those who embody expertise.  Think about this:  what would your results be if your team was populated with experts vs those with merely with experience?  How would this impact your customers?  Your colleagues?  Your bottom line?

John Maxwell has said that “the growth and development of people is the highest calling of a leader.”  

I encourage you to answer this calling.  Become better.  Influence your team to become better.  Improve your coaching sessions (or maybe start having them?).

In an upcoming post, I’ll be sharing some great questions you can begin using in coaching sessions that will enable your team to really think.  They will help you have more meaningful conversations.

Thank you for visiting Go, Leader, Grow!

I am Accountable – are you sure?  by Michael Cahill

All along my employment journey, I have had positions that had varying amounts of responsibility, and I believed I held myself very accountable. If asked in the summer of 2008 (when I became CEO of a publicly traded company), how accountable I held myself, I would have answered that I held myself extremely accountable.

I was wrong.

That is hard to say, and it took me a few years to see the light, and probably another year or so to admit it. What happened?

I was in front of the very same board (I was CEO of the company’s largest subsidiary prior to the summer of 2008). I knew all the details and activities of the company. However, there was now no one between me and the directors. One of the directors sole focus was holding the CEO accountable – period.

At first, I thought it was about blame. Then I thought is was just about picking on me. Then I thought is was personal.

Once again, I was wrong.

This director did not care about blame. It was not personal, and he was not picking on me. He just cared about what I was going to do to correct things going forward and to insure poor results did not reoccur.

He did not care how it happened, or who did it. He did not care if 15 of the 16 key metrics were good. He wanted to know why all sixteen were not good. What was I doing about the one bad metric?

I could not play CYA. I could not say that overall we were good. I could not use any other tactic to get around it. I had to own everything. I was CEO because a great majority of my decisions were good ones. I was CEO because a great majority of my actions were the right ones. I was CEO because I had selected the right strategies. However, as CEO I had to be held accountable for 100% of what is going on. It was the board’s job to hold me to that standard.

A funny thing happened along the way. I became more and more comfortable with this level of accountability. I recognized it was not about blame. It was about always getting better. It was about improvement. It was about be able to face adversity and take on that challenge versus hiding from it. The more accountability I took, the easier it became.

Errors or bad results are just challenges to overcome. Bad things happen – always. It is not about avoidance, but honestly admitting these ‘bad things’ and coming forward with solutions and actions to overcome them.

So how do you respond when bad things happen? Do you blame others? Do you divert attention? Do you CYA? Do you hide, or do you own it, see it as a challenge, and come back with solutions, ideas, and tactics to overcome the issues?

I want to work with people who hold themselves and others accountable. Easier said than done, but it is so worth it!

As an aside, as I was working on becoming more accountable and less defensive, I would sometimes say in a board meeting – “Thank you for pointing that out. I am sure I will appreciate it tomorrow.” I was half kidding, but once I got over my defensive posture, I knew I would be a better person for it.

The cool thing? The more accountable I became, the less fear I had. The less fear I had, the more accountable I was. It was a self fulfilling prophecy.

So next time something bad happens to you or to your company, or division, or team, go down the checklist. Did you hide? Did you blame? Did you CYA? Did you divert? Or did you state the issue and lay out how to correct the problem and keep it from happening again?

Who would you rather be around?






Why vs How by Jim Johnson

When you are confronted with a challenge, question or any conundrum, what do you ask yourself?

Why is this happening?”

How can I figure this out?”

What you ask will determine your outcomes.

WHY seems to assume there in only 1 answer.  WHY can freeze you in your tracks – paralyzes you from moving forward. WHY creates a self-pity scenario.  WHY drains you. WHY is not the best way to deal with obstacles.

how

HOW triggers creativity in your brain – you will start looking for options and possibilities.    HOW looks for potential.  HOW energizes you.  HOW empowers you.