The idea of coaching is continuing to change. What coaching had been considered five, ten, even fifteen years ago has changed, in my opinion, dramatically.
I want to go over the many different types of coaching. Life, career, transition, communication coaching, etc., and from my perspective, each of those has tremendous value.
What I want to focus on is business coaching and executive coaching and to define what that is. Coaching is that partnership between the coach and the coachee intended to help them maximize the potential both personal and professional outcomes they are looking for in life.
Looking at the different types of coaching, life coaching, for example, can be beneficial. But life coaching is focused on helping you think through how you respond and react to things in life, and more on the larger picture of who you are as a person.
Career coaching might focus on helping you determine your path at work and how to get there.
Communication coaching could be specifically how to present in front of an audience more effectively, etc.
Business coaching is different. It is led by a qualified person who works on both the business side with good business acumen, but they also focus on you as a professional coach, helping you identify the common obstacles in life that are challenging.
With that, I found that when I began as a coach, the approach that was considered most effective was asking questions and guiding people through them. That is extremely valuable.
There are also times that I have noticed working with executives, that they are looking for a sparing partner. Someone who will say the hard thing and challenge an existing belief. I find that for me and with Strata coaches, we have to push ourselves often to be the boldest person in the room.
When I work with someone as their executive coach, I want to know up front that they are deeply committed to this. Secondly, I ask for their permission to say those hard things. I will never do that in a manner that is disrespectful or hurtful, but to me, it is a matter of loyalty.
Looking at business coaching, theoretically, you can have someone who is a good coach, technically. They can guide the conversation, and they know how to help someone in that way. If they don’t have business acumen, lack a background in organizational development, leadership, law, accounting, that sort of thing, then it becomes a challenge when speaking to certain parts of the business.
If you are looking for an executive coach, make sure you are asking for that. Make sure you are asking for someone who has the experience to help you reach your goals.
About Dr. Nathan Mellor
A thought-leader, two-time TEDx speaker, author, and CEO of Strata Leadership, Dr. Nathan Mellor is recognized for his ability to connect at the heart level with a wide range of audiences. A proven executive coach, who has provided in excess of 2,500 coaching sessions for executive leaders, he believes providing the highest quality feedback requires caring deeply about others. He serves as a sounding board, sparring partner, and a source of encouragement for leaders seeking to maximize their effectiveness.