LEADERS CAN COACH THEMSELVES 2023-07-24T00:17:32-04:00


This week I was coaching a new client and we were discussing challenges she was having with a colleague. We explored the particular issues and how she might approach them differently.

Instead of assuming she was right and her colleague was wrong, instead of blaming her colleague when things did not go smoothly, and instead of feeling frustration and anger, we explored how she could change her own mindset, one thing over which she certainly has control.

This exploration led to an “aha moment” during which my client realized she could coach herself on an ongoing basis outside of our biweekly Zoom coaching sessions.

My client does have a leadership coach – me – and yet we explored the strategies she could employ going forward to expedite her own leadership growth. Here are some of the techniques we talked about.

Perhaps you see one or more that will help you move forward toward becoming the leader you wish to be:

-Read leadership books and biographies on a consistent basis – Here are a few of my favorites that I recommend to clients and friends:
-“The Coaching Habit” by Michael Bungay Stanier
-“Language and the Pursuit of Leadership Excellence” by Chalmers Brothers and Vinay Kumar
”The Five Dysfunctions of a Team” by Patrick Lencioni
“”Immunity to Change” by Robert Kegan and Lisa Lahey
“What to Ask the Person in the Mirror” by Robert Steven Kaplan
“The Truth About Leadership” by James Kouzes and Barry Posner

-Ask colleagues and friends for recommendations of leadership newsletters and blogs that they find helpful

-Look for leadership lessons in movies and television shows you watch and then discuss them with friends and colleagues

-Do your own 360 reviews – – Ask colleagues and direct reports for their feedback about your leadership style and behaviors instead of waiting for your annual review

-Collect feedback from stakeholders before making major leadership decisions

-Consider keeping daily or weekly leadership lesson lists to reflect upon

-Consider journaling about key leadership challenges and how you respond to them

-Find a trusted colleague with whom you can have confidential leadership conversations on a regular basis

-Focus on aspects of leadership you can control rather than things beyond your control – like a colleague’s personality or mindset

-Write down personal strategies you will employ to enhance your leadership and track your own progress

-Document your leadership goals for the next 12 months and find an accountability partner to help you stay focused on them

-Identify specific relationships you wish to build or strengthen during the next year and develop time-based plans for working on each one

-Ask each of your direct reports how you can be a more effective leader for them and ask them to help you follow through

These are just a few strategies for how you can become a more effective leader working on your own. You can do it. It is within your control.

When you work on your own paradigms or mindsets and stop ascribing your weaknesses or challenges to others, it is amazing what you can accomplish!

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