Marta is a high performing Senior Project Manager who has very high standards for herself and others. The organization sees huge potential in her and would like to see Marta grow into a higher responsibility leadership position.
Marta’s biggest obstacle to growth is that she alienates others with her brisk tone and ‘micro-managing’ tendencies.
People respect her knowledge and at the same time are not eager to be on her team.
The organization recognized the potential dangers of promoting Marta, so the HR Business Partner reached out to explore leadership coaching as a way to support Marta’s leadership development.
Marta has attended many online training courses on managing people. However, so far, nothing seems to have stuck or helped her adjust her approach.
We all have blind spots. We unconsciously get in our own way. One and done training programs might help us learn a new technique or open our eyes to a new theory.
The challenge is when we return to our role there is little incentive, and sometimes ability, to put it into practice.
Through a series of leadership coaching conversations, Marta began to understand what was holding her back from moving to the next level in her organization.
Here is an example of some of the conversations Marta’s coach had with her…
- “I’ve noticed you have talked about having the same challenge with three different people. Are you aware of that? What’s the common denominator with these three people?”
- “I’m curious why you believe you can’t achieve that? What would have to happen to shift your perspective?”
- “What’s one thing you are willing to try this week that might produce a different result?”
A combination of powerful and focused conversations plus action is the key to growth, and this is exactly what leadership development programs provide for people.
Many, many clients share that their coaching space is the only opportunity they have to pause and focus on themselves, their leadership, and their impact on others.
Marta realized she was so busy completing tasks that she didn’t take time to think about her leadership.
She didn’t take time to consider her impact on others and therefore was blind to the experience people were having under her leadership.
Here’s what Marta shared after just a few leadership coaching sessions,
“It has been hard to change from a doer to a leader. I have always equated my success with how much I get done in a day, what I check off my list.
To be honest, dealing with people issues just got in my way. I did not fully understand the impact I was having on others. That part was really hard, understanding why people did not want to be on my team.
The coaching experience has helped me recognize that my success has a different definition now. It is all about how I can help others be successful.
What’s on my ‘to do’ list is now different. I couldn’t shift my behavior until I shifted my thinking. That’s what coaching has helped me do.”
“Plus, my coach keeps me accountable to do what I say I’m going to do. I don’t want to show up at my next session without my homework done!” she chuckled.
Marta agrees she still has a lot of work to do, and she is confident now that she can get there, and that people will soon want to be on her team.
Even the best leaders are faced with blind spots that create challenges for them. Leadership coaching is an objective way to look at those blind spots and create opportunities for growth to help our clients reach above their highest potentials.
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