A leader for me as an executive life coach is someone “who gets the job done, using the right means matching the situational demands of the task.” Leadership is also contextual. The personal strengths of a leader that are effective in one context or situation might not be so in another.
This often is a sore point for leaders, which hinders progress and development. The most difficult part of leadership in today’s business world is being able to adapt to situations and behave in ways that might not come naturally but are warranted by the needs of the hour.
It means, coming to terms with situations wherein ground realities & facts, override one’s belief system by rendering them ineffective in dealing with emerging challenges, due to changes in socio-cultural paradigms of an organization’s work environment.
As an executive coach, I have seen this resonates with many young professionals in the corporate world, who excel in performing a specialist leadership role in let’s say the sales function and then get promoted to a general management position say as the Head of the Sales Department, which needs a different set of competencies, interactions with other departments, handling meetings with more seasoned professionals, more inputs on etiquettes, a more detailed overview of the business from different perspectives, etc.
This small fact tends to get missed in most companies and the young leader is set up for failure for no fault of his/ hers.
Another yet very familiar case is when individual contributors get promoted as first-time leaders. Again the thinking is the same as above, and the employee is set up for failure.
In both of the above cases, the resultant scenario is stress, mental fatigue, sense of helplessness as the skills, convictions, and beliefs, that were effective in navigating through complex circumstances, in their older roles are no longer useful in their new roles.
Here is where executive coaching plays a critical role in helping these professionals come to terms with their current realities, accept the need to change, and initiate actions based on their commitments towards self-development goals for professional growth, business advancement, and organizational development.
Several organizations have implemented graduated learning interventions at all levels to address these challenges, learning from the military, wherein officers who get promoted go through several months of retraining and education on handling their new postings.
However, these efforts are too generalized and dispersed. Human Resource departments handle these as tick box activities and training departments execute training calendars for the masses given their time and cost constraints. The result is that at the end of the year, they show training as being completed but little or no reporting on the effectiveness of these.
What’s needed is a more personalized approach to development, which is executive coaching. Here the employee selects a coach matching their chemistry and experience and then starts a personalized journey of learning and development matching his/ her individual needs. This approach while being time and cost-intensive gives exponential returns in the long run.
An effective departmental leader, could save millions in costs, initiate new projects effectively, bringing in billions in revenue, as a result of insights and learnings acquired through coaching, giving mind-boggling returns to the organization.
For a leader, here is where being genuine to their inner self helps in building transparent and open relationships with team members.
Leaders, who rise above their insecurities and individual shortcomings, experience a level of bonding with others that transcends challenges they face as a team, leading to a great work environment of performance, merit, which motivates individuals to contribute with a sense of purpose and integrity.
The leader’s inner state has a key role to play in being able to navigate the VUCA business world today. Inner peace, calm, and clarity of purpose brought out by an effective coaching intervention, enables effective leading of teams and businesses.
To know more about how coaching can help you grow personally or your organization develop, contact me on www.percyvaid.com.