In this episode, we discuss our process of executive coaching and what we’ve been learning over the past 18 months. We outline our coaching process, share some examples of how we’re integrating Strengths, and share a few takeaways you might be able to use with your team.
What is Executive Coaching?
Over the last 18 months, we’ve committed to executive coaching with established clients and functional teams. Our process includes 6-12 coaching sessions with 1-2 coaches per participant and we utilize a 4-part focus: Collaboration, Communication, Conflict, and Change or another 4-part curriculum appropriate for your team and culture.
What makes our process so effective is our 8-session outline (includes 4 topics, 4 team sessions, and 1 capstone project), our balance and counterbalance of multiple coaching perspectives, and our focus on personal narrative, context, and people. Our executive coaching process is about getting real-time feedback, objective observation, and making a plan for how to apply the lessons to you and your team.
The Importance of Personal Narrative
In everything that we do at Leadership Vision, we teach the importance of personal narrative for leaders and their teams. By personal narrative, we mean that a team leader considers the following issues or characteristics when listening to someone: their age, race, culture of origin, gender identity, where and how they grew up, and their life experiences.
In our executive coaching team sessions, we give people a chance to talk to 2-4 other people on their team and share stories about their childhood, where they came from, and how that’s changed their communication preferences. Focusing on personal narrative gives leaders a much deeper level of understanding of themselves and of the people that they’re leading and working with. It is the foundation of our executive coaching process.
What Can You Gain through Executive Coaching?
We’ve learned a lot in our recent sessions with clients. Below are three examples of leaders with different needs and how our executive coaching process helped them and their teams. We discuss these examples in much more depth in the episode.
Tom is an example of someone just starting the executive coaching process. In our session together, we discovered 4 team tensions that existed on his team: stress fractures or hairline fractures, visual distractions, emotional nerve endings, and shared negative feelings. In just one 90-minute session, we were able to identify these tensions and start to guide Tom towards becoming the leader he wants to be.
Steve is an example of someone who is through the executive coaching process. He is a solid leader who applies his Strengths of achiever, discipline, learner, relater, and responsibility in his leadership role. Steve wants his leadership to be characterized by his accessibility through consistency, not as a leader who only engages their team when there’s urgency and immediacy.
Part of the executive coaching process is teaching people to use a language of strengths to contextualize and look at their relationships through another lens. For an executive like Steve, this allows a greater understanding of how people interpret their leadership character to develop and how this all aligns with their values.
Oftentimes executive leaders come to us and they already really know themselves. When we met Bruce, he was a new leader who needed help creating relational understanding, team-based trust, and establishing his leadership role. Bruce knew himself well as a leader but needed our help learning how to get to know his team. Our work together in the executive coaching process allows established leaders like Bruce to see the nuances of where some of their brilliance comes from and how to share it with others.
Executive Coaching for Your Team
You can become the leader you want to be, the leader your team needs, and the leader that you need to be — let us help! Our executive coaching process can help teams of all sizes. What questions do you have about our process and how can we help you? Send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or connect with us on social media, or comment on this blog.
About The Leadership Vision Podcast
The Leadership Vision Podcast is a weekly show sharing our expertise in the discovery, practice, and implementation of a strengths-based approach to people, teams, and culture. We believe that knowing your Strengths is only the beginning. Our highest potential exists in the ongoing exploration of our talents. Subscribe to the Leadership Vision Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
Please contact us if you have ANY questions about anything you heard in this episode or if you’d like to talk to us about helping your team understand the power of Strengths.
If you’d like to be featured on the Leadership Vision Podcast, let us know how you are using Strengths and what impact it has made. Contact us here!