My client started off a conversation on Monday by addressing how things are going with one of his key people,
“Really good. Really good. He’s like a new man, to be honest!”
I’ve been coaching this key Project Manager in his overall leadership and project management, his innovation, his business sense, his client relationships, his presence, his communication, his attitude, his positivity and the respect, commitment and follow-through he generates from his team and those all around him. Additionally, it has been essential to foster a strong, productive relationship between him and his manager. The individual has been a productive Project Manager in the past, however there had been a number of problems with his recent projects, decreased profitability, evident issues with his leadership, and loss of potential follow-up work and variations with lucrative clients.
The Operations Manager and Human Resource Manager of this powerful resources firm didn’t want to abandon or dismiss this Project Manager, nor could they afford to turn a blind eye to an individual responsible for multi-million dollar projects. They knew that a workshop or other ‘educational’ solution would not produce results. Their best option was to hire me to help this man change for the better. They knew by recommendation that I would deliver.
The fundamental shifts in mindset came within the first couple of conversations. I work towards creating dramatic results wherever possible. Besides gathering information and profiling the coaching client, I observed him with his staff and clients on-site. We followed through with a number of principles and specific behaviours for him to address: everything from conceptualisation of the critical elements of leadership and project management, through to client interaction and his impact on the business. I helped him form a framework for how he thinks and communicates with others.
What I did was work to create a positive, forward-thinking, more business-savvy, strategic leader who learned better how to lead and manage a team that would be more concerted, more enthusiastic, more driven, more committed and pleased with their successes.
Amongst other things, the Senior Manager commented on the coaching client’s change from a previously pessimistic and negative attitude to a positive and more constructive one:
“You can see him pull himself up … it’s actually noticeable. It’s really good!”
Results such as the change that we have achieved are worth the investment of time and money. My coaching (and his efforts) has changed this man’s leadership, his professionalism and his life for the better and changed those of the people around him.
Coaching is future-focused. It’s about how you improve later today and tomorrow. So whether it’s taking the cream of the crop and helping them to be even better or remedying performance, there is always an element of change involved.
As one of my executive clients says when he eagerly records some points of insight during our discussions, “This is what it’s about … getting those refinements to my thinking and behaviour!”
I believe that creating dramatic change also requires creating lasting change. To do that, you need to address fundamental beliefs, assumptions and values – and that applies to both individuals and organisations. It also requires the presentation of evidence that can dramatically affect someone’s assumptions and influencing that individual or group through insightful communication. Surface agreement leads to surface ripples, but no underwater current.
Funnily, the senior Manager had asked the coaching client after our very first session, how it had affected him. The ‘coachee’ noted a number of thoughts and ideas he was excited about. The senior Manager laughed, “But that’s what I’ve been trying to tell you.” “Yeah, but Peter had a really good way of saying it!” How you communicate messages are critical to change and coaching discussions – and communicating these using multiple means of persuasion. (And I’m good at communicating those messages.)
Once initial changes are made, follow-through, accountability, managing the environment, while extrapolating implications, behaviours and further principles are all vital. It’s one of the reasons why I create unique technologies, IP and processes to maintain that growth.
Make the effort to create change for yourself and your organisation. It’s worth great investments to see that “new man”!
Whether you want private consulting and coaching, remote or face-to-face work, or team and organisational consulting, we can implement processes that will create dramatic improvement for you and your people. Contact me through theleadershiplamplight.com or www.lamplighter.com.au if you would like to discuss how you can improve your performance.
Copyright 2014 Peter J. McLean.