Becoming a Leadership Coach Who is Powerful: How to Avoid Leadership Coaching Pitfalls

Becoming a leadership coach doesn’t equate to becoming the biggest, baddest coach on the block.  There is a great deal of skill and finesse in leadership coaching.  In fact, the definition of leadership has more to do with getting people to willingly do what they wouldn’t otherwise do rather than to forcibly get them to do something.  So what does leadership coaching look like?  And how does one embark on the path to becoming a powerful and effective leadership coach?

Leadership Coaching Requires Understanding What Motivates Your Clients

Becoming a leadership coach is about understanding what drives or motivates people.  One quick way to find out what motivates people is to do a Values Assessment.  People whose highest value is getting the highest and best use of their time and resources (aka money) are quite different than those who are driven by selfless contribution to others.  In leadership coaching if you try to motivate these folks with money it may actually decrease their motivation to produce results.

Becoming a Leadership Coach Means Staying Flexible

Becoming a leadership coach doesn’t mean maintaining a superior posture.  In fact, some of the most effective leadership coaching sessions involve the coach taking inferior or equal postures as often as taking a superior posture.  A coach and a client who go head to head from a superior posture are like two rams battling over territory with their horns clashing.  Someone is going to get hurt.  The person who has the most flexibility is the leader, as he’ll have more possibilities to influence the other person.

If You Like the Idea of Empowering Your Clients, Leadership Coaching Might be for You

Becoming a leadership coach is about caring enough to take a stand.  When a client shows a pattern of not following through on his commitments, in leadership coaching you need to care enough to bring it to his attention.  There is always a “reason” for everything.  My mantra is not to let anything slide.  It doesn’t mean yelling at your client, getting annoyed, or threatening him.  It means helping him identify what really stopped him from following through with what he committed to doing, and then empowering him to make a change.

Becoming a leadership coach is really about going first.  And in leadership coaching if you start from a position of love and caring for the other person, putting their dreams and desires above your own, and commitment to play full out; you’re off to a good start.

Colette Seymann

JTS Advisors Bi-Designated Strategy and Accountability Coach

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