In the past, organizations assumed that their executive and senior staff was equipped with the skills necessary to act under pressure and make quick decisions. It was thought that such individuals had the inherent ability to inspire and implement innovative ideas, the ability to keep their skills sharp and up to speed, and that they would always had the answer.
As organizations continue to struggle to regroup and reform after the most recent recession, one thing has been made abundantly clear: leadership doesn’t always have the answers. It was also made glaringly apparent that those in leadership lacked the support needed to continue to be a fantastic leader. Executive coach training has increased in demand to meet this need, and it is quickly becoming one of the most lucrative and dynamic careers of the 21st century.
What Is Executive Coaching?
As with any coaching position, one who receives executive coach training will help individuals – if not entire organizations – become “unstuck” and move forward. Organizations who do not feel as if they are progressing as they should and that leadership can use some mentoring will often hire an executive coach to undercover what any underlying issues may be and to then address those issues.
Qualities of a Great Executive Coach
Before embarking on a series of coaching courses, ask yourself if you possess these 4 characteristics that make for a great coach:
1. Relationship Management Skills
A coach needs to be able to build strong and secure relationships with clients in a fairly short period of time. This means having the ability to foster trust quickly in individuals and prove that you are compassionate and knowledgeable. It also means being able to lighten the mood when things become too heavy or serious.
2. Active Listening Skills
A large part to coaching is actively listening. Coaches will need to learn what matters most to the client, where things may be amiss (i.e. lack of engagement or passion in the job), and then be able to reconnect the executive member with the organization’s vision, mission, and strategy.
3. Confidentiality Skills
It is essential that the client understand that all matters that they disclose to you as a coach will remain private. This is key in maintaining a trust-based relationship with the executive member.
4. Observational Skills
Every workplace that a coach will step into will have a variety of dynamics at play, including environmental and systemic dynamics. Coaches have to quickly understand these dynamics and understand how they can act as hurdles or be used as a positive. A coach who has received quality executive coach training will also be able to use these dynamics to help increase his or her client’s emotional intelligence. This is important in helping a client understand why he or she reacts a certain way in certain situations and how they can manage such reactions going forward.
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