Are you a coach or an old fashion boss?
This is a question that all leaders should be asking themselves.
In his book, Coaching for Leadership, Dr. Marshall Goldsmith, who was recently recognized as the #1 leadership thinker in the world by the Harvard Business Review, explains the distinction between being a coach and being a boss. It gives us pause as leaders to consider what our approach is and the impact it has on the people we lead. Take a look at the distinctions suggested from the book. What do you think?
|1. Push, drive people
|1. Lift and support people
|2. Talk at people, tell, direct, lecture
|2. Engage people in dialogue
|3. Know the answers
|3. Seek answers
|4. Trigger insecurity through administering a healthy dose of fear as an effective way to achieve compliance
|4. Use purpose to inspire commitment and stimulate creativity
|5. Control others through the decisions they make
|5. Facilitate others to make and implement their own decisions
|6. Point out errors
|6. Celebrate learning
|7. Delegate responsibility
|7. Model accountability
|8. Create structure and procedures for people to follow
|8. Create a vision and promote flexibility through values as guidelines for behavior
|9. Believe in doing things right
|9. Believe in doing the right things
|10. Believe that their power lies in their knowledge
|10. Believe that their power lies in their vulnerability
|11. Focus on bottom line
|11. Focus on the process that creates the bottom line result
For some people using a coach approach comes naturally, while others must focus on learning and applying the coach approach skills. How does a person learn these skills without derailing their careers or the careers of others?
In order to use a coach approach, a person must first be willing to learn new ways of leading to experience the positive impact it has on themselves, their team and their organization.
I encourage leaders who want to develop their coach approach to do the following:
- Find a mentor who exemplifies the coach approach and learn from them: follow them in meetings, follow them down the hall and listen to their conversations, and ask them questions
- Determine the skills that are needed such as active listening and feedback
- Participate in a formal coaching program either 1:1 or a small group environment
- Serve on a board of directors of a charitable organization where you must use a coach approach to influence volunteers to show up, be committed, engage accountability and make a difference without any monetary compensation tied to results
What will you do to develop your coach approach?