In March, Ascent added several new C-suite members & emerging leaders as coaching clients.
From those coaching sessions, several common themes emerged, despite clients coming from very different professional domains.
Coaching, fundamentally, helps clients think through strategies, key issues, evaluate obstacles, and engage in forward-looking analysis.
Coaching helps clients make progress from where they are at present, toward their goals.
5 Common Themes in March
Scaling the business
“What got you here, won’t necessarily get you where you want to go”. You and your business must continually evolve. As such, this topic comes up frequently, and in many forms.
In March, we coached around new product integration (how to identify, approach, and penetrate target markets), and organizational chart evolution (creating and hiring for key roles needed to sustain performance and growth).
In this instance, inquiry and new perspectives are powerful tools to help the client create new insights. Coaching is not about giving advice, but rather helping the client broaden and deepen their perspective around a particular topic.
Dealing with impostor syndrome
Coaching clients are: Creative, Resourceful, and Whole.
Yet when we leave our comfort zone or zone of expertise, we might feel like we're in over our heads.
Talented, successful people who spend years becoming masters of their craft or experts in their domain likely haven't faced a beginner's mindset in a while. This can lead to impostor syndrome; clients feeling like they are lacking something.
Yet, these clients have proven time and again that they possess the skill and talents to thrive. In coaching through this issue, clients often benefit from a simple reminder that they are not only capable, but can come up with creative solutions, they are resourceful (meaning they can execute their strategy), and they are whole (they have everything they need implicitly).
Coaching is about empowering the client (or reminding them how bad ass they already are!).
Boundaries and establishing criteria for “yes”
Success is not without its own challenges; people want to engage when they see you succeeding, they want to be part of that success. So it becomes very important to establish your boundaries and criteria for what you will take on professionally, or as a company.
This includes exercises like:
Customer profile evolution
Choosing strategic partners
Delegating work that is no longer mission-critical
Can vs. Should evaluation
Your bandwidth and resources (time & energy, for example) are limited. Boundaries keep you focused on the things that make the most positive impact toward your goals.
Difficult or emotionally charged conversations
Clients dealing with this issue typically present in a state of confusion, frustration, or fear. Typically, clients are focused on "worst case scenarios" and get caught in the loop that this creates, often leading to avoidance, or the conversation going poorly (since that was the focus, after all).
To work through this issue, we started by defining a good outcome. From there, the client identified key points and takeaways, and we worked through how to get there.
This particular topic comes up in both upward-facing and downward-facing situations.
Clarifying career and leadership goals, taking proactive action
Clients presenting this topic usually benefit by shifting out of a reactive or responsive mode, waiting for the boss or someone to tell you what to do.
Instead of wondering what you “should” do, begin with the end in mind. What defines success for you, professionally? Define it and then align your short-term, intermediate-term, and long-term goals. Identify and rank priorities that move you along your career or leadership path.
Do any of these 5 themes resonate with you? If so, schedule your discovery call today, and learn how coaching can be a powerful contributor to your success.
For more on this topic, watch the following video.
About the Author:
Matt Beckmann is the Founder & Managing Director of Ascent Consultants. In addition to experience as a former Chief of Staff to the Missouri Auditor and as a Corporate Vice President and General Counsel, he has advanced training and certifications in law, business, and executive coaching. Matt's passion for performance and well-being helps clients identify and clarify goals and strategies, and empowers clients to take intentional, focused action that helps them attain their highest goals.
Ascent Consultants provides business consulting, executive coaching, and leadership assessments. By converting client growth goals into an actionable "game plan," we help companies and individuals unlock their full potential.