Iâ€™ve watched some coaches over the years set themselves up as authority figures. They arrived at the place of commanding their leaders what do to. They fell into the â€œyou must submit to meâ€ mentality. Such aberrant behavior places leaders under bondage rather than liberating them to serve. Coaching focuses on the latter.
How do you know if youâ€™ve been effective as a coach? The only way I know is to practice coaching and then evaluate whether or not youâ€™re meeting the needs of the leader. My advice is to step out and coach and then get feedback from those who you are coaching. Is the leader satisfied with your coaching? If so, green light. Youâ€™re on the right path. However, if months later, the leader is not getting his or her needs met, you might need to do some radical adjustments. How will you know? By asking the leader and getting feedback. Those who you are coaching are your best resources to determine if youâ€™re meeting needs or not. Through their feedback, you can began to shape your own coaching style.
I ask all the leaders I coach to give me an oral evaluation. In fact, I start out the coaching process by telling them that Iâ€™ll be asking them to evaluate my coaching. I find that all advice is helpful and makes me a better coachâ€”even when they say things I didnâ€™t necessarily want to hear. I want to know if Iâ€™m on the right path, so asking for advice is preferred to the silent, uncomfortable knowledge that something is wrong.
The difference between a good coach and a great coach is a listening, learning spirit and willingness to improve. Better coaches have learned from their experience and made mid-course corrections to better meet their target audience.
My new book Coach will come out on September 2007.
This part of the Advanced Training series that will train cell leaders to coach new leaders.