What was the catalyst that made you want to be a better leader and lead you down the path of coaching?
It started with the feedback one would receive on performance. The intent to improve oneself is always there. Coupled with that there were a couple of instances where talks on coaching and mentoring and how it positively impacts leadership crossed one's path. The intent to improve and the curiosity of how one could use coaching techniques, as a leader, set off this journey.
The start of coaching was all about seeking to learn how one could lead one's team better to improve performance. As that learning experience started one realised it was about coaching self. About self-leadership.
As a leader you've got to have strong character, grit and be passionate. These help in engaging and motivating the team. With that you've got to be compassionate, patient, and able to pace yourself as per your team. Not your individual speed.
Where coaching helps is helping to understand the team better, listen to them, be patient and able to pace oneself as per the team.
Doing this takes a bit of effort. You've got to be accessible and make people feel they can be comfortable with you. Accessibility, openness and showing people that you are passionate about developing people is very important.
As a senior corporate leader, undertaking coaching helps in getting back in touch with the human side of things. In corporate, the focus is on results and the processes leading to that. Yet it’s the people who need to be directed and doing that requires empathy and compassion. Which is what being human is all about and that's the bit that coaching helps a senior leader re-discover about self and get better at.