Leadership Coaching: It’s Different for Everyone

Written by on December 21, 2015

Leaders who are contemplating pursuing an executive coaching relationship often have the same questions: What can I expect? What is it like? What do we talk about? What do we do?

Unfortunately, there’s no easy answer to these question because every coaching relationship is different. Every leader who seeks out coaching has their own unique set of strengths, challenges and opportunities based on their role, the state of their organization, the relationships they hold at home and in the workplace, and their own personality traits. As such, a coach must adapt to meet the needs of the leader in question and focus on providing guidance and insight that will be most valuable to the individual. The best coaches strive to help leaders achieve small wins that, overtime, help shape major transformations.

Coaching for Today, Tomorrow and the Future

Sometimes a session can be as simple as helping a leader think through the best way to approach an action item or the next “to do” on their list. In other cases, a coach may work with a client on a higher level to set long-term goals and create a plan to achieve them. They may also focus on how to forward team goals that a leader is responsible for. Other times coaching may involve honing in on more specific tasks or worries. For example most leaders – and people – have a tendency to avoid situations or conversations they dread. A coach can help prepare you to handle undesirable circumstances and hold you accountable to following through. Coaches often have their clients engage in role playing activities to practice tackling a tough or uncomfortable conversation. Or if you have a strategy you’re looking to advance within the organization, he or she might work on tactics to help you generate support for it.

A Customized Coaching Approach

Because no two leaders are the same; no two coaching relationships will be the same. Let’s say you have two team members who don’t get along. The approach your coach takes with you may be very different from the approach he or she would take with another leader facing a similar problem. Your personality, your skill set, your organization, your project, your team, and dozens of other variables will be taken into consideration to craft a solution that works best for you.

But while the approach may differ for each leader, the goal is always the same: to help you become the kind of leader who is constructive, helpful, and respected by your teammates.