Productive Leaders

Ph.D., CSP, CDR, US Navy Ret.,
CPAE Speaker Hall of Fame

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be coachable

Are you a leader who can be coached?

Second Lieutenant David Higgins, USMC, one of my former students, competed in the summer 2016 Olympics in Brazil. One of the key traits of the best athletes in the world that they are coachable. They have coaches who help them constantly get better.

Corporate, political, and volunteer leaders need boards of advisors, mentors, and coaches to give them the advice they need to improve.

Are you a leader who accepts feedback?
Do you take what you learn and put it into action?
Can you accept information if it means building stronger teams and producing better results?
Are you as good at accepting suggestions as you are giving them?

Leadership coaching is about accepting feedback, and utilizing that information to create a better vision, improve communication, and increase profitability.

Some leaders have a tough time accepting feedback because:

  1. They think they are always right.
  2. They don’t like to be criticized.
  3. They truly don’t care about the organization or its people.
  4. Their ego gets in the way.
  5. They cannot listen without becoming defensive.

We have also noticed that these same leaders and managers who are not coachable often expect their people to accept feedback graciously, even when they themselves cannot.

How do you know if you are a leader who is open to feedback?

  1. You know where you are going. You have a clear vision of the future.
  2. You look ahead instead of resting on your laurels. You are focused on achieving better results in the future.
  3. You encourage the people around you to give you feedback, even when it is not positive.
  4. Your teams know that they can give you honest information.
  5. You try to learn something new every day.
  6. You make fair and equitable decisions based on the good of the organization instead of making decisions based on personalities or favoritism.
  7. You are comfortable with being uncomfortable. To be a coachable leader you have to be willing to change your behaviors to be more effective, and change is uncomfortable.

At the heart of great leadership is the commitment of leaders to continuously improve themselves as well as the people around them. Great leaders are those who accept coaching and who mentor others to achieve greater personal and professional goals. They create a culture of continuous development, process improvement, and trust that fosters collaboration.

Now is a great time to solicit feedback, find ways to improve, and set your teams up for a prosperous first quarter and year.

Where are you getting advice? Are you in a mastermind? Do you have a coach or a mentor? Please share below.


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