Our assessment and coaching begin with your agenda. We design a custom engagement with you if we work directly, or along with your organization if they support you. We don’t use canned approaches! Our process, curated content and proprietary materials are our own—created, tested, and refined for 30+ years.
We work in partnership with you. By combining your information and expertise with our observations and capabilities, you get better and faster results. We emphasize a results- oriented approach—how to get where you want to be from where you are. And we follow up with action planning around clear accountability: who will do what, by when?
Executive coaching is often organized as follows. In each step, “you” is defined as the leader participating in coaching, alongside your organization if involved, as illustrated in the following example.
In this step we meet virtually or face-to face, often with the boss and/or a human resources officer. We discuss the agenda for coaching and the commitment of the leader and the organization. We agree about the coaching agenda and scope of services, including the degree of confidentiality and the desired results.
Next we gather data for feedback to the leader. This step can range from a series of conversations, to direct observation of the leader effectiveness, standardized inventories such as the Hogan Leadership Assessments or the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), to a multi-rater assessment (360° survey) and/or interviews with key people having first hand knowledge of the leader over time. This step produces a clear, objective and “actionable” picture of the leader, and how he or she is doing relative to expectations.
Feedback and discussion
Then we meet again to review the leader’s data. Working together, we determine the reasons for any differences between goals and reality, between where the leader is and wants to be. This step leads to insight and learning, and can become the basis for planning desired change.
Based on our interpretation of data, with the leader we help identify key strengths and weaknesses—as well as blind spots and development needs—and plan for follow up action. In setting priorities, we focus on behaviors to avoid, begin or continue. This step results in a clear, realistic plan of action.
In this step we help the leader learn new ways of thinking and acting. Working together, we build competence, confidence, and commitment. Actions can include periodic coaching sessions, stretch assignments at work, selected readings and/or courses. We often work with the leader’s team or organization as well.
In this step we help determine that actions achieve their desired results. To ensure ongoing impact we create ways to monitor and sustain success over time. These can include further development planning to facilitate behavior change, reinforcement, and progress checks to maintain the changes.
Once progress is made, we celebrate the leader's success. As needed, we may conclude the coaching cycle at this point, or contract for continued work, (e.g. reassessment and further coaching). Also, we may ask the boss, the human resources officer, or others in the organization to become more actively involved.
This executive coaching process is based on an organized body of knowledge and experience from the field of organization development (OD) and related disciplines. While we use many methods, we emphasize learning by doing, using action research. Action research means research on action with the goal of making that action more effective. Applied to executive coaching, action research combines research on individual executives with service to each of them.
The intent in our coaching process is a continuous cycle of action, research, reflection and learning that leads to more effective action. The action-reflection-learning cycle, in turn, leads to better business results by improving the performance and leadership of key people.