5 Reasons Why Coaching Makes Better Executives
Today, more than ever, business requires strong leadership. Executives who can motivate staff, manage growth, and make hard decisions are not exactly rare, but in an increasingly competitive environment, the strength of their skills is more important than ever.
That’s why it has become increasingly common for businesses to invest in training for their executives over the past few decades. Just as executive pay has increased dramatically (at least 800% since 1978), so too has the prevalence of hiring coaches for those executives. As businesses of all sizes scramble for competitive advantages, so too do they seek to minimize risk by ensuring their corporate leadership is up to the task.
But what exactly is the benefit of executive coaching? Does it really improve the quality of enterprise leadership?
The short answer is yes, but we’ve broken it down to 5 clear advantages.
REASON #1: Self-Discovery
Make no mistake, self-discovery is probably one of the most important benefits an executive will receive from a coach. Leadership requires very strong communication skills, and that can only be achieved through self-awareness. Self-awareness in leadership has been shown to correlate directly with organizational efficacy and even profitability, although this skill is rarely taught in schools. An executive coach can train company leaders to make honest self-assessments, allowing them to better recognize their own strengths and weaknesses, express directive clearly and effectively, and make decisions with confidence.
REASON #2: Understand Others
Communication is a two-way street. Just as it is imperative for executives to better understand themselves, so too is it for them to better understand the various people they deal with, from other executives, to employees, to clients and customers. An executive coach will not only offer a different perspective in assessing these people but should also provide some kind of cognitive framework for developing that understanding. This enhanced awareness becomes something of a superpower for executives, offering them a means of “peeking behind the curtain” at another’s thinking and motivations.
REASON #3: Forge Better Relationships
Better understanding yourself and others will naturally improve your ability to forge strong relationships. But what if you could get more out of them? An executive coach will help you assess and maximize the value of your relationships. By putting strong relationships to work for them, a leader can improve productivity from employees, increase business with clients and partners, and also leverage better career outcomes.
REASON #4: Take it to the Next Level
In earning a leadership role, most executives have already developed their own “toolkit” of working methodologies that have helped them to merit their position. Yet, the leadership dynamic is often so broad in corporate structures that advancement to upper levels of leadership may require an entirely new set of tools. This is where an executive coach can really shine, by helping adapt pragmatically as leadership roles and expectations change. This not only helps executives remain upwardly mobile, but makes them better at adapting to shifts in business as well.
REASON #5: Achieve Your Goals
Every executive has goals, both on a personal level and in relation to their business. Yet, having these goals is not the same as consistently working toward achieving them. One of the most pronounced benefits of having an executive coach is that he or she is able to help maintain focus on important goals, both long-term and short-term. As a neutral third-party observer, a coach can ask their charge whether a particular course of action will advance their goals, and even suggest alternative responses that are more pro-active toward achieving them. For many executives, this benefit alone is invaluable.
Of course, there are other, more specific benefits that arise from the hiring of executive coaches as well. But viewed in the broad sense outlined here, it becomes clear why executive coaching has become so commonplace in today’s highly competitive business landscape. What was once viewed as a corporate luxury has become mission-critical in some industries and will likely only become more so in the future.
Naturally, this is good news for executive coaches. Not only do they find themselves increasingly in demand, but it’s now easier to find high quality training for this unique career than ever before, such as with EFL’s Effective Leadership workshops. Our workshops make it easy for those interested in exploring a career as an executive coach to learn for themselves many of the skills they will need to impart in the role. And business leaders who participate in our seminars will learn first-hand exactly how valuable hiring an executive coach can be.