By: Godfrey Madanhire.
If 30 years ago you told your average executive that perhaps the most invaluable tool in their careers would be a small device that connects them to the world, but fits in their pocket, you'd probably have been laughed out of that office.
Today's executives may have accepted the smartphone as one the most powerful tools available in their business arsenal, but all too often they still react like the executives of 30 years ago to the idea of coaching.
Though in wider thinking the importance of overall wellness is recognised, in the business world this knowledge still needs to fully penetrate the mainstream.
Always learning and improving
In business, corporate coaching is equal to an admission to failing and needing help in your career. This can mean the death knell to a career.
Coaching is a methodology for self-development with a more effective and fulfilled leader as the end-goal. Coaching isn't acquiescing that you have somehow failed, but rather proves a desire to work towards an increased capability and aptitude in the person being coached.
No different to professional athletes needing trainers to achieve their peak abilities, executives can benefit greatly by the support, guidance, and assistance from a professional who can challenge and ignite the spark that leads to improved leadership.
Whilst historically most coaching was done on a one-on-one basis between the coach and the person, corporates are now starting to see that core aspects of executive coaching are applicable to their organisations on a wider basis.
Coaches now also inspire employees through the application of company-wide programmes, guiding them towards achieving higher performance by finding more meaning in their work. Of course, as with most "new" business decisions, success or failure depends on who you partner with.
Trusting the coach
Whether it's one-on-one coaching, or wider corporate coaching, a successful coaching relationship can only be built from the basis of a strong trust in the coach. The first element to look at is the feeling you take away from your coach.
If they are not someone you can easily talk to or you can easily entrust with your staff, then that isn't the coach for you. In addition, ensuring that there is an organisational "fit" for them within your organisation, though hard to ascertain, is also key.
An often overlooked skill that is key in successful executive coaching for an entire company, is a coach who can quickly assess the politics and dynamics within organisations. This includes recognising how individuals interact within those structures.
A good coach may base his work on a set of concepts and skills, but for the best experience in coaching, you want more. You want someone who's taken that experience and applies it in a practical and down-to-earth manner.
Power of referrals
Nothing, of course, will ever surpass the power of referrals. It's highly recommended that you engage in your own research of any executive coach you consider doing business with.
If asked to quantify what value smartphones have brought to business, coming up with a hard and fast number may prove to be difficult. Despite this, every executive knows they are a necessity to growing one's business in today's world.
Coaching is no different. While the positives of coaching - the overall wellness of a company's greatest asset, its people - are clear, putting a number on that figure is near impossible.
However, that impossibility doesn't make it any less a necessity.
ABOUT GODFREY MADANHIRE:
Professional motivational speaker and life coach, Godfrey Madanhire is the driving force behind leading motivational company, Dreamworld Promotions. Through Dreamworld Promotions, and based on his life experiences merged with extensive knowledge of the concepts and skills around motivating and inspiring individuals, Godfrey has held seminars helping people grow and organisations such as MWeb, Engen and the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants to build their workforces. Twitter @godfreyinafrica