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Understanding Leadership Coaching and Development

In this blog, we delve into the why, what and how of leadership coaching and development.

Why is Leadership Coaching and Development Required?

Research conducted by GP Strategies with experienced leaders reflected the importance of leadership coaching and development, and specifically 85% of those leaders said that executive coaching would increase their effectiveness as leaders.

Leaders are responsible for the work that is being achieved to meet organisational objectives, they have a duty to reflect on the past, as well as looking towards the future, they set the strategic goals and inspire and empower the people that they lead to serve the organisation.

Frequently leaders face new challenges, for example, leading through a pandemic and they need to work with a variety of stakeholders inside and outside of their organisation. A successful leader’s role includes a great deal of emotional intelligence, and to some this comes easier than others. Oh and they’ve a home life to consider too!

According to an ICF report of 2019 ‘Building Strong Coaching Cultures for the Future’ in which the following question was posed: "How are coaching activities used to address your organisation’s goals and strategies?" the top rated response was "As a component of our leadership development program".

Image showing components leadership coaching can support

It’s rare that leadership coaching and development needs are exactly the same from leader to leader, especially by the time that they are in senior positions in organisations, as they have often been through myriads of training and development programmes, from talent succession to management and of course the top level leadership development programmes.

What leaders are frequently found wanting, is a bespoke need to fulfil their personal leadership development gaps, whether that be identifying how to navigate through a pandemic, how to effectively influence peers on the board or overcome unhelpful patterns of behaviour that get in the way of their success.

This is why coaching is often the source of both support and challenge for leaders. The safe space provides the optimal conditions to explore and sound out their thoughts and ideas, the unsolved challenges that they are facing and to work with an experienced, practised and efficient thinking partner as their coach.

What is Leadership Coaching and Development and How Does it Work?

It’s a series of 1:1 coaching conversations between a leader and a leadership coach that empowers the leader to confidentially explore, and importantly, make decisions to work towards desired changes for long term impactful change that not only impacts the leader, but also the wider organisation and its goals.

An experienced and credible leadership coach is an essential part of the solution. They competently set expectations with the leader and stakeholders to clarify confidentiality, expectations and measures of success to ensure the clarity of the purpose of coaching.

In the coaching conversations the leader discusses openly their strengths, challenges and the goals that they wish to achieve in each session. The competent leadership coach pulls on the years of experience, coaching practice, coach training and supervision experience to instinctively follow the incisive questions to help unfurl the challenges and enable the leader to find their own solutions through their strengths and unknown potential.

What Are Some of The Topics Frequently Addressed Through Leadership Coaching and Development?

Here are just a few of the topics that our leadership coaches address on a regular basis:

  • Experienced leaders receiving 360 or other feedback

  • Setting challenging goals for their directorate and establishing boundaries

  • Stepping up to board/C Suite role

  • Influencing and stakeholder relationships

  • Creating strategic direction/setting organisational objectives

  • Setting boundaries between work and home life

  • Putting themselves on their self-care agenda

  • Developing emotional intelligence/compassionate leadership

  • Owning their seat at the table

How To Select A Credible Leadership Coach

The ICF report ‘Building Strong Coaching Cultures for the Future’ states that the top 2 most important criteria for selecting external coaching practitioners are:

  1. Previous coaching experience

  2. Credentials and certifications

Here at The Leadership Coaches we conducted our own research in addition to this and we go above and beyond those criteria to include:

  1. Previous coaching experience with clients that have paid for the service as opposed to Pro Bono

  2. Credentials and certifications AND also regular coaching supervision with an accredited coach supervisor

We are very proud to say that every single one of our coaches meets and exceeds the above criteria, we reference check every one of our coaches and they only make it into our pool if they are top-notch, but don’t take our word, read the testimonials here.

Our Leaders Need Coaching. What Do We Do Next?

Simply email, or call 03450 950 480 and we can arrange your complimentary needs analysis session.

We also offer complimentary chemistry sessions for your leaders with our coaches to decide the best coaches to help your leaders succeed.


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