What is Executive Coaching?

Executive coaching is about individuals who recognise that while already successful, they want and can do even better.

It is about the willingness to learn continuously – from everyone and in every situation. It is about the curiosity to find out more about why, what, and how things work, and the eagerness to want to find out why when it doesn’t.

It is about letting go of habits that may have worked before but may no longer work; of behaviours that once seemed to get things done but may now be stumbling blocks; of attitudes that once may seem right but now could be our worst enemy.

It is about taking responsibility and knowing that when things go wrong, we have to look at ourselves first, and see how and what we could have done differently.

It is about humility and accepting that no one is perfect, and everyone can do better.

It is about getting the best from others, after first getting to know ourselves better.

It is recognising that our greatest legacy is helping more people lead more meaningful lives.

Is coaching considered as training or consulting? No. Training normally implies that someone is being “taught” new skills or techniques by a specialist or expert. Consulting implies that the expert consultant provides answers.

Is coaching mentoring or counselling? Not quite. Again, these two concepts imply that a guru or counsellor is present to offer advice on specific issues, challenges or problems.

While certain elements of the above may be incorporated, coaching isn’t about all that. Coaching is the outcome of an effective interaction between the coach and his coachees that enables them to see their “real” selves – be it good or bad. This gives his coachees an invaluable insight into their own strengths and weaknesses, values, hopes, dreams and concerns, and provides them with the chance to commit to address their apprehensions directly.

Coaching is also about the partnership that has been forged with the coachees in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximise their personal and professional potential.

In order for the executive coaching program to be effective, some assumptions would have to be made:

  • The client and/or coachee must be open about the program.
  • There must be rationality and trust.
  • There must be no hidden agendas.
  • Mutual respect between the coach and the coachee must be present and both parties will be viewed as equals.
  • Strict confidentiality must be maintained.
  • There must be full commitment to keeping to meeting coaching sessions while recognising that there could be unexpected emergencies that may necessitate changes in schedules.

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