People tend to change their behaviour when they want to change and in the ways they want to change. Without an internal desire to change what or how they behave, any noticeable differences are often short lived. I have seen this time and again in leaders who coach their employees to alter their behaviour in order to conform to organizational expectations. Even in how physicians coach their patients in lifestyle changes they should make in the interest of their health and with career coaches who direct their clients to specific opportunities based solely on their skillsets or employment history.
All of those examples describe a common view of coaching as an activity where based on your experience, expertise or authority you would advise individuals on what they should do and how they should do it. This is called Coaching for Compliance vs Coaching with Compassion. While there may be a time and place for coaching for compliance, this type of coaching is unlikely to produce sustained and desired behaviour change.
Just look at the estimated 60 – 70% failure rate of Organizational change initiatives which ultimately rely on individual behavioural change. Often times, it would be helpful to have an outside qualified consultant to come in to assist the initiative. Being told that we have to or need to change is simply not an effective way to sustain the change.
Do you know the difference between coaching for compliance and coaching with compassion? There is a 5 step process that has proven effective time and time again in my practice and in my 12 month Accelerator Program for Businesses and Leaders.
I could tell you so many stories that I experienced first hand with clients with regards to the power of coaching with compassion vs compliance.
First, we have to unlock the power of passion.
Leaders have choices to make as they progress in their careers to create a path for their development. Typically pulled towards two different options. One is what they “ought to be doing” and the other is what their heart tells them they really enjoy.
Leaders have a chance to work with a coach as part of their development and to focus on what they need to do in order to achieve promotion and opportunity. When they begin working with me, they soon realize that I do not pursue any defined agenda whatsoever. I am simply there to help them articulate what they want to do and who they want to be in the future as they envision it and to help them figure out how to move in that direction.
It does not take an experienced coach like myself long to identify the struggles that coachees struggle with. There are often many possibilities.
Many options can look promising on the path ahead. As their executive coach, I ask them to engage in a hypothetical exercise. “What if you had to make a forced choice? And in choosing the one option, you would have to let go of the other completely. Under that scenario, which would you choose?” When they struggle with the answer, I next ask, “What if you just choose one and “try it on” like you would a coat for a few weeks. If you do not like it, take it off and try on the other one for a few weeks.” Then we get back together and talk about it.
“Sarah” tried on her options and first poured all of her mental and physical energy into one of her choices for the path ahead. She stayed in that space for a short while and we would check in on how it was gong during her weekly coaching sessions. She soon realized that she did not like how it felt and the thought of remaining in that space for a long period of time was actually uncomfortable and felt she would be missing out on many things she really enjoyed and were her natural strengths. At that point as I suggested, she switched her mindset towards the second path. Almost immediately she felt a difference. She was surprised at how much better this option felt and how excited this option and what was possible with it energized her.
When we talked next, “Sarah” shared with me, “This is it!”
The remaining coaching sessions focused on the steps she would take and the action plan to move towards her true passion and ideal vision for her future.
For the next several months, “Sarah” was happier than she has been in quite some months.
The tension had been lifted and she was pursuing what she wanted to do with her heart and was comfortable with wherever that was leading her.
Then, unexpectedly, she was approached about a new position being created at her organization. She told me that had it not been for the coaching she received and making the discoveries she did with me about her ideal future, she likely would not have even considered the position. As it turned out however, she did and has been enjoying this new role for the last 19 months. She often tells the people she comes into contact with that it was the best career decision she has made and that she could not have written a better job description for herself.
Had I as her coach, pushed her towards compliance rather than compassionately identify and pursue her vision for the future, imagine how different the outcome might have been.
Helping people change is quite an honour.
Intentional change is easier when you partner in possibility with a qualified and trusted confidant.
Coaching effectively takes many skills and is a facilitative and helping relationship. Coaching is partnering with an individual or group in a thought provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential. Unlike mentoring, coaching more often is over a shorter period of time such as 6 or 12 months with a few wildly importance goals and a specific focus.
Most of us have had someone in our lives who have influenced us positively. Their genuine care for our well-being and care for our success is felt even when they challenge us.
My coaching mantra is “I believe people are creative, capable, wise and good.” I am looking to support a leader who is at the Director level and above who is ready to explore new possibilities.
Accelerate is our signature program for those who are committed to their success
We work with highly educated, growth focused action takers.
This is private level coaching for TOP business owners and leaders with ongoing enrolment. Are you ready, let’s talk!
Jimbere Coaching and Consulting is a private practice by a fellow business owner. A recognized authority on change management, profitability, and organizational turnaround, I’ve served as an advisor to thousands of individuals and organizations around the world for more than 20 years. Helping to improve productivity & profitability, faster growth, greater profits, and a more positive quality of life.
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