by Roger Pynn
I’d never thought about it before, but watching a professional management coach friend of mine in action the other day made an important impression: very successful executives can benefit from advice from the sidelines … just like a base runner waiting at third for a chance to steal home.
I learned a long time ago that successful consulting involves helping a client find the right solution, rather than telling them what will work. I rarely know enough going in to be able to hand a client the answer. We have to work together, explore alternatives and select the best option based on careful analysis.
I work in an area where seeking outside help is common … and I love the successes we have. There’s no question that being asked into an organization is flattering … and the rewards go way beyond financial. Seeing results that make clients smile is a unique paycheck.
When an executive is humble enough to seek a coach to help them improve their overall performance, they’ve said “I don’t know it all, I’m not perfect just because I’m the boss and I’m going to get someone that can help me be even better.”
A management coach who tries to tell their client what to do is doomed to failure … just like a college football coach who belittles a young player trying to learn the game. One who reminds and prods with subtle hints and leading questions is sure to produce hall of fame players.
Business may not be a game but both sports and business require strategy … and a good coach helping you keep an eye on your plan can be a real game changer.