Many times during my 20 plus years in corporate America, I had the opportunity to work with a coach. I became more self-aware, more able to self-lead and more interpersonally skillful; essentially, I became more coach-like in all of my roles, more able to guide myself, peers and the teams I was responsible to to a greater sense of possibility, empowerment and wisdom within, on and off the job.
As I evolved into larger leadership roles, I lobbied for coaching for my direct reports, for my peers and for large program facilitation. At first, my management would resist, either because of a fear that asking for help would make them/me/us appear weak or because there was a fear that if someone got coaching, they would become harder to please or they might outgrow their role or us, leaving the organization prematurely. In my worldview, if any of those things happened, we had a bigger problem, which required each one of us in leadership roles to look in the mirror, and quickly.
In reality, the exact opposite was true. In every case, asking for and receiving help turned out to be a sign of strength, great wisdom and growth. In the workplace, coaching helped our leaders to become more coach-like, conscious and skillful. It enabled them to encourage, engage and inspire others, to build and sustain stronger relationships, break through issues and achieve meaningful goals more quickly. Each person became more effective, engaged and impactful. Negative turnover went down and desirable retention rates went up. Loyalty, productivity, and job satisfaction scores all improved. Whether coaching starts in the home or the workplace, it can have a significantly positive impact in all parts of that leader’s life.