There is no lonelier person than a leader. I’ve been there. I understand the isolation of leadership. In my 30+ years of business, my leadership teams, boards of directors, and family were all available all the time, and yet I was often isolated. I required advisors whom I could trust, who had no agenda, and who would ask me tough questions.
As an executive coach, I strive to be that safe, nonjudgmental, confidential, critical thinking partner. I strive to be the cure for loneliness at the top. I believe in:
- Asking questions
- Questioning answers
- Critical thinking
- Finding truth
- Making a difference
What Does That Mean to You?
Studies show that isolation can lead to missteps, but when business leaders have a safe place to discuss issues, a nonjudgmental strategy partner, and the aid of a qualified executive coach, they make better decisions and achieve better results.
How do you find out if this will work for you? Find a coach who:
- Has experience leading companies
- Has been trained and certified by a reputable coaching organization
- Follows a disciplined coaching methodology
- Allows you to try a coaching session because every great coach isn’t the right coach for every great leader
You can find out more about my coaching methodology by reading below. But the best way to find if a coach is right for you is to try a coaching session. That’s why I’m offering a complimentary, no-obligation, 1-hour online coaching session.
CxO Elevate Coaching Methodology
Many people confuse coaching with consulting. Effective coaching differs from consulting in that a quality coach asks questions and avoids proposing solutions. A good coach guides a client to develop an optimum, prioritized action plan through spirited questioning to enable the client to develop a plan that they will commit to execute.
Research shows that people have a higher probability of executing plans they develop as opposed to plans that are developed for them.
As a coach, my responsibility is to vigorously question a client’s thinking in order to help them crystallize the best path forward. My methodology, the CxO Elevate Coaching Methodology, was adapted from training and certification I obtained from Vistage International over a five-year period beginning in 2007 and includes five assessment/engagement elements, processing through issues, and a drill-down focus on specific issues (learn more about coaching methodology)
As I begin working with clients, we comprehensively assess their current situation, strategically develop a plan for engagement, and methodically address issues and challenges.
#1 Leadership Canvas Development — A proprietary checklist to develop, define, and understand a leader’s personality assets, organizational culture, values, and goals. For example, if your company’s mission is to find a western passage from Spain to India, the Leadership Canvas serves the function of a compass and sextant to lead you through perilous, uncharted waters.
#2 KPI Development and Agreement — Develop annual and quarterly Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to organize themes for coaching sessions. For example, a theme could be client acquisition, operational excellence, increasing client lifetime value, reducing revenue acquisition cost, recruiting talent, employee development, cost of goods optimization, improving client user satisfaction, etc.
#3 Ongoing Monthly Coaching Sessions — One hour each month, consisting of:
- Progress check-in — against KPIs
- Rate business, personal, and health status
- Drill down on pressing issues
- Agree on monthly goal for next month’s meeting
#4 Quarterly Meetings — Take place in the first month of each quarter and include a reassessment of annual themes and KPIs.
CxO Elevate Fierce-Based Issue Processing
After the assessment, we begin to address specific issues. We move forward through intentional conversation and employing acute honesty and vulnerability (adapted from Susan Scott’s, Fierce Conversations).
- Interrogate Reality — Focus on thoughts and feelings and what is at stake.
- Make the Conversation Real — No masks or barriers allowed. Both coach and client must be completely authentic and vulnerable.
- Be Present — Listen to the words and for the meaning. Listen to what’s not being said.
- Issue Identification — Ensure you are discussing the real issue and that it is properly identified. Don’t allow symptoms to be identified as problems. Get to root causes. Avoiding issues is not allowed.
- Confront Your Toughest Challenge — Take the time to properly identify the problem or issue at hand. Dodging the problem or issue will do nothing but prolong the dilemma resulting in a less than optimal solution.
- Instincts — Don’t ignore your gut instinct. Promote both head and heart responses.
- Let Silence Do the Heavy Lifting — During a conversation allow silence to draw out the truth and drive home impact.
- Use the CxO Elevate Drill-Down Process — When dealing with a problem or complex issue as your tool for identifying, clarifying, and taking appropriate action.
CxO Elevate Drill-Down Process
With the foundation of assessment and a specific issue or challenge in mind, I help clients move from ideas to action.
It can be lonely at the top, but it doesn’t have to be. Many leaders have found that a relationship with an executive coach — on an individual basis or as part of a peer advisory group — helped them move from isolation to action.
Want to see what it’s like to be coached? Schedule a complimentary session here.