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I recently received an email from a leader whom I coached a few years ago. I loved hearing how he has kept the momentum going that we started together. He told me that something I had said about his “opportunities for improvement” still stuck with him. I quote, “Something you said, simple, subtle, made a huge impact on my mind.”
This is the reason I coach: I impact individuals to see things in a different light and move forward.
I didn’t begin my career as a coach. I didn’t even know what “leadership coaching” was back then. But I realized that the leaders in my organization came to me for advice and for me to ask questions to get them to think differently. So without knowing it, I was a coach!
I became a certified coach so that I could leverage my accumulated experience to guide leaders to be better at the difficult job of leading. I gain satisfaction when my clients achieve goals that they couldn’t have reached without me. I remember one plant manager who was struggling – both with his leadership team and the entire staff. Together we crafted a plan for him to step up to become the leader he could be and the staff needed. His communication effectiveness increased, his teams jelled and his leadership skills improved.
Coaching is challenging. I must continue to learn about business, leadership and coaching in order to give my clients more than they expect. Since I’ve always enjoyed learning, I do this eagerly. I also learn each day from my clients – what they say, what are their challenges, and what approaches work best for them.
One of the biggest rewards is knowing that I give people tools to be great leaders without me. Just like this email outlined, a great coach continues to influence long after the coaching contract is completed.
I love to coach leaders and teams, especially those with technical backgrounds.
Leadership is not easy. Want to gain the skills to become a more effective leader? Let’s talk. Valerie.MacLeod@HainesCentre.com
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