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How Do Coaching Skills Support Being a Better Leader?

Jan 24, 2022

The world is starving for leaders who are able to step into their true power to inspire and empower others to discover and live their highest potential.

Whether you’re a coach, a CEO, a parent… or whatever roles you have in your life… becoming a better leader will transform your abilities, your results and the influence you want to bring to the world.

You might be asking, how can I or anyone ensure I/they are going to be a positive role model and an effective leader?

This is where coaching skills can support you to take your leadership abilities to a new and influential level… and also bring out the leader in others, whether it be clients, team members, family, friends, community members and perhaps people you are not even aware of yet.

Before you can effectively lead others, you must first and foremost develop the leader within YOU!

Have you ever met a natural born leader?

The sort of person who seems to exude confidence and charisma? Their presence can calm or inspire a room with effortless ease. They have a congruence and authenticity which keeps them aligned, centred and grounded, no matter what’s going on around them. They own who they are and stand solid in their truth.

How do you develop these abilities and this congruence, authenticity and aura of confidence in yourself?

Know thyself… (we’re talking about ‘all’ of thyself)

One of the most valuable skills and traits you develop when you study coaching is to know who you really are and the ability to be authentic, brave and vulnerable at the same time. This also means you can courageously ask for feedback and then be very open to listening to it. And yes, we know some people thrive on seeking feedback, in its many shapes and forms, but many people attempt to avoid seeking feedback for themselves.

Often feedback can be considered a 'scary' thing to do and yet it can be very empowering if we seek feedback from people who will support us to reveal the areas we do well and those we can do even better at.

Coaching and coach training can support you to learn to sit with feedback, without being defensive about it, allowing yourself to get curious about your personal responses to the external feedback to understand what is here to learn for yourself. And then using the insights to make new decisions about who you want to be, how you want to show up, what you want to do differently and improve your abilities and ways of being.

Yes, sometimes this process can take a little courage and might be a little uncomfortable… but the leaps in personal growth can be dramatic.

Setting your intentions to lead... and taking action

Once you understand who you are and/or who you want to be, you can set intentions about what you want to experience and how you might want to support others to bring out the best in them.

In a recent podcast on 'What Leadership And Coaching Skills Have To Do with Each Other' (The Empower World Coaching and Leadership Podcast, Episode 174 - see the podcast link below), we shared a recent client experience, in particular a client who is a high level business leader, who embodies seeking and being open to feedback - to learn what he could do differently and better - and to set intentions for himself to support his team.

After starting as a coaching client and seeing the difference coaching was making in his own life, he decided to attend the Empower World coach training programme and learn the skills, so he could go even deeper for himself – by getting coached and coaching himself - and also use the powerful skills of coaching to support his team.

These empowering skills of deep listening, thought provoking and stretching/challenging questions, building trust and rapport, giving and receiving feedback … being able to bring out the best in people are the type of skills this leader knew would make a tremendous difference for his team.

As a result of what he learned, one of the key things he implemented with his team was a process of asking for feedback on how he’s performing and who he’s being. And also to give the gift of feedback to his team.

Receiving this feedback for himself has supported him to make incremental changes which are good for him, good for his team, the organisation and the customers.

Now, for many, this is quite a vulnerable gesture. One that could potentially put this leader in the position of hearing things he doesn’t really want to hear about himself. But by doing so, he is - as Brene Brown would say…
‘Putting himself in the arena’.

And as a result, he’s stepping up to the leader’s ‘table’, stretching himself and growing faster than ever.

He’s uncovering and addressing the ‘blind spots’ (unconscious thoughts, patterns, emotions) which allows him to become a better leader.

This in turn has a ripple effect that not only inspires his team to become better leaders, it also empowers everyone to be more open with giving and receiving feedback themselves: for themselves and others.

Leadership is becoming comfortable with the uncomfortable… and our shadows are a potent doorway

“Everyone carries a shadow, and the less it is embodied in the individual’s conscious life, the blacker and denser it is. At all counts, it forms an unconscious snag, thwarting our most well-meant intentions.” (Carl Jung)

As with most things, the deeper you go with feedback, and the more willing you are to look at and sit with uncomfortable perceptions (which are potentially other people’s reality), the more profound the transformation.

Have you ever noticed that the more we try to ignore, hide and cover up our ‘shadow’ parts… the ones that we perceive as ‘bad’… the more energy we give them and the bigger they grow?

It takes a tremendous amount of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual energy to try to keep these parts of ourselves hidden. We drag them around with us like baggage, unable to let them go because we never acknowledge them. And often they manifest as self-sabotage or emotions that seem to explode out of nowhere.

The mere act of recognising these shadow parts (which we can do by getting and accepting feedback) can be like sticking a pin into and bursting the bubble. By exploring and getting curious about these shadows - what is the impact when they do show up, perhaps why they show up and what is here to learn or embrace or let go of or change can lead to compassion, empathy, and new perspectives, commitments and outcomes

Here are 5 ways we can uncover, recognise and shine a light on our shadows.

1. Ask for feedback.

By learning to ask for feedback and love discovering areas that might need your attention - instead of leaning away and becoming defensive when you hear something that you don’t like - can be an empowering opportunity for growth and positive change.

2. Self reflection

You can discover a lot of things about your authentic self by sitting down with a pen and notebook and journaling. Asking yourself high quality questions can reveal things you were not conscious of before. For example, when you feel stuck or keep self-sabotaging, ask yourself ‘what is it that I’m not acknowledging? What do I feel right now? What is this feeling here to teach me or do differently?

3. The world is your mirror… Here’s how to use it

The world is a mirror. You cannot see a ‘trait’ in someone else that you don’t see in yourself. We might express them in very different ways, but they are what makes up the human psyche. And it is only in acknowledging those parts in ourself that we've perhaps not consciously noticed, that we truly feel much more integrated and whole.

Recognising this and recognising how traits manifest in yourself - in the good and not so good ways - can release its power and bring you back to equilibrium.

The next time you find yourself triggered by someone - either positively or painfully - ask what is the real trigger? Not the person themselves, what did this person's action or words perhaps remind you of or bring out in you? Or where do you behave in your own life in that way? And does that support you or hold you back and do you want to enhance or change the behaviour? Or is it as simple as acceptance and awareness?

4. Working with someone who is independent of you (such as a coach) to support you to identify 'blind spots' of thinking and doing?

This is one of the key areas that time spent with a coach will pay you back 1,000 fold. And it’s why, even the most skilled and experienced leaders and coaches still use a coach religiously, no matter how successful they become.

A great coach can support you to go through the darkness, clarify the learnings and then hold you accountable for implementing the learnings (i.e. feedback) that you receive.

And importantly, a coach will support you to identify what you truly want to experience in your world - as well as your purpose, values, aspirations and how to achieve them.

5. Attending courses and workshops

An empowering workshop or course combines the power of having a specific, focused, distraction free block of time to really focus on yourself and go inwards. Combined with specific exercises of learning, experiencing and practicing, you get to create amazing breakthroughs and profound insights that could otherwise take years to discover.

Ready to step up even more into leadership?

With each piece of feedback you use to develop yourself further, you grow.

With each shadow you bring into the open, you become more enlightened.

And with each insight, you become more aware.

And with more awareness you can open up new choices, decisions, experiences and emotions.

Be empowered!

Listen to the following podcast Empower World's Coaching and Leadership Podcast Episode 174 here.

We believe to be truly effective as a leader is very interlinked with coaching. The ability to be coached, coach others and coach self can create deep and powerful connections to self and others which leads to empowering behavioural transformation.

Episode-174 can be found here:        
Direct Link:   https://bit.ly/3F4Id2U
YouTube:       https://youtu.be/r5V6yEWvomo
ā€ŖStitcher:         http://bit.ly/st-podcast-episode-174
Spotify:           https://spoti.fi/322bHjN
iTunes:            http://bit.ly/EW-Podcast-iTuneā€‹


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#Organisational #Development #Mastery #Executive #newperspectives #Change #Management #Skils #Leadership #Development #Presence #Personal #Development #Fulfilment #Team Building #MiddleEast #Australia #UK #Europe #Singapore #Asia
#leadership #leaders #doha #qatar

“Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself.
When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.”

- Jack Welch -

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