• Thursday, February 29, 2024
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Executive coaching and business leadership (4)



ince coaching entered the business executive suite several years ago, it has sought to make technical and business leadership more practical and effective. This is in a similar manner that sports coaching is expected to perform in bringing about optimum performance and excellent achievements in professional sports. Executive coaching in particular is more focused on getting the business leader to be assured that he or she is never going to face business challenges or uncertain times alone.

It is worth emphasising that in the corporate coaching arena, the demand of executive coaching is not so much about honing of technical skills. That is not what really defines executive coaching. Rather, it is more about the business leader having a trusted, experienced, knowledgeable and non judgmental individual (the coach) acting as a solid partner and dependable sounding board when there is the need for some form of  brainstorming and sharing of ideas.

Executive coaching is about having the wise and experienced hand by your side when there is the need for some guidance and wise counsel. It is about trusting the independent voice of the coach when there is the need to synthesise realistic ideas, test opportunities and formulate winning strategies. It is about fearlessly and unashamedly picking the brains of the coach when there is the need to venture into uncharted territories. And, it is about being assured that there is the impartial ear of the coach when there is the need to speak to an understanding friend and trusted partner.

It is therefore clear that executive coaching cannot (and should not) be just about improving technical skills. It is more than that because even the most technically sound business leader may need coaching to get through certain tough periods. It is not so obvious, neither is it often spoken about publicly, but a lot of business leaders go through periods of mental anguish, emotional exhaustion, self deprecation, executive stress and loneliness. It is at times like these that an executive coach is needed to support them and keep their all-round productivity at optimum levels.

Coaching as a relatively new personal development and capacity building process and business system is often confusing to some people in the developing countries of Africa in particular. Executive coaching in particular requires some further understanding, especially because the recipients of such a coaching engagement are ideally regarded as accomplished people. The confusion is therefore usually about what new things that coaching can offer a supposedly successful and experienced business executive.

What distinguishes coaching from every other form of learning system or skills transfer process is that it is a specialised and focused conversation between a coach and the client in a partnership of equals. Yet, in the process of coaching, the client experiences an internal resource engagement, which is essentially a personal energy boost and personal inspiration to do something necessary and important.

Hence, coaching is almost always about the individual feeling strongly challenged and mentally stretched to make certain commitments to change or alter things. The most beautiful and powerful thing in this regard is that the individual equally feels absolutely supported by the coaching process to bring about the required changes effectively, without any external compulsion or obligation.  The long term result and benefit of the process is that there is always an increased personal awareness and a strong sense of purpose about achieving set goals and desires, whether they are personal or not. Coaching thus ensures that there is increased clarity about aspirations, as well as practical strategies and steps that dovetail to specific processes and practical actions.

The impact of coaching, especially executive coaching on an organization will be that top managers and leaders with executive mandates are equipped to make better decisions, which will be more sustainable and ultimately more beneficial. In this regard, the main thrust of executive coaching remains the effective engagement between the coach and the client to compel practical and desirable changes. And, in many instances, this engagement encompasses personal, business and corporate aspects.

Executive coaching therefore enables the client to engage not only with business needs, but also with issues of lifestyles, family, relationships, health, intellect, emotional status and related transformational dimensions.

 The quality and effectiveness of executive coaching engagement in this regard link directly with effective delivery of business needs, with the organisation’s performance improving as a consequence.

As a result, the success of executive coaching practically illustrates the impact of coaching in enhancing leadership skills and providing tools for management demands and meeting corporate expectations. It empowers executives to also practically operate as coaches and mentors, not just as corporate leaders. Consequently, they are better equipped to get more out of their people and their organisation. You can read more about the transformational power of coaching and register for wealth coaching at www.ceedcoaching.com.

By: Emmanuel Imevbore