Ask an athlete!
A common question I hear is, “What value does a “Coach” bring to a CEO, executive, business owner or aspiring entrepreneur?” The easiest answer would be to ask a professional athlete. Top athletes would never consider that there was no room for improvement. They rely on a coach to train, evaluate, critique, hold accountable, support and drive them to maximize their potential. Why would that be any different for someone who aspires to be a champion in their business?
After 25 years of coaching youth sports and teaching leadership, organization, and commitment to personal excellence I have realized that we all have strengths and weaknesses. And we all possess the potential to improve. Coaching gives business owners at all levels that opportunity and helps push themselves to take action. And what I have found after coaching hundreds of clients here at CHI is that the action we take to refine and constantly improve our strategic leadership and management skills ultimately impacts our ability to achieve personal and organizational success.
The challenge is many executives and entrepreneurs focus mainly on “what they know” or “what they are best at” rather than focusing on refining those skills and targeting areas of improvement that launch them and their organization to the next level. In sports that is the true difference between a “Player”—who relies on the talent he or she has and the “Superstar”—who never stops striving to improve those skills. This is where a Business Growth Coach can have a significant impact propelling you to truly achieve the growth and success you strive for.
These results speak for themselves regarding the impact a coach can have on both an executive and their organization. In recent studies, researchers found that business owners and CEO’s saw:
- 529% Return on Investment for Executive Coaching
- 86% Productivity Increase when Coaching was Added to Training
- 22% Increase in Bottom-Line Profitability
- 67% Increase in Teamwork
- 32% Increase in Employee Retention
- 52% Reduction in Conflict
Some other interesting facts in the study on the value and impact that a coach can have on an organization are:
- 77% Improvement in Relationships with Direct Reports
- 71% Increase in Relationships with Immediate Supervisors
- 67% Increase in Teamwork
- 63% Increase in Relationships with Peers
- 61% Increase in Job Satisfaction
- 44% Increase in Organizational Commitment
- 37% improvement in Relationships with Clients
What is the behind the numbers speaks volumes for those business leaders who strive and continuously stay ahead of the curve. This sort of mindset is what differentiates a company from its competition and sets it apart.
We Know What We Know!
Every CEO, executive, business owner or aspiring entrepreneur has primary strengths, skills, knowledge and/or passion that stands out. That is what got them to where they are. With an athlete it could be speed, agility, hand-eye coordination or sheer strength that sets them apart. For the business owner or executive it might be their leadership style, engineering skill, product vision or operational experience that defines them and sets them apart. The reality is that very few leaders or organizations can be considered an “elite superstar” in every aspect of their business. Even more important is that to maintain that high level of performance takes hard work, continual dedication, and as Chet Holmes would say “Pig-Headed Discipline™” towards constant improvement.
Always Room for Growth and Development
No person or organization can stand in place developmentally and expect to grow and achieve success. It requires constant strategic planning and transformational thinking to adapt and evolve to the changing needs of the market. Mastery is always the goal, but what does it truly take to master anything? No successful leader will tell you they have “Mastered” their market. There is always an opportunity for strategic growth and improvement. They practice, practice practice relentlessly.
Do You Run Your Business Or Does Your Business Run You?
For many business owners and executives, their biggest challenge is that the business runs them of instead them running their business. Their day is filled by long unproductive hours, reacting to their business rather than leading it. Interruptions and crisis management become the norm and not the exception.
In the end you are either “Reactive” as a leader, or “Strategic” as a leader. The first races into their office bracing for what they will encounter that day. The latter will focus on the growth and success of their business and deal with issues based on a strategy that is already in place.
How do you make all your great ideas happen?
So you may be thinking that you want to be that strategic leader, but how? A game changer is getting someone in your corner who is there to help you will take the guess work out of where to go from here. Here is what is needed to make a great coaching relationship work:
- An effective coach does not tell you how to run your business, but they work with you to stop letting it run you.
- A coach will help you and your business identify opportunities for immediate improvement that will impact you, your company and your bottom line.
- Your guide will facilitate the development and implementation of strategies for growth and success that you have never had time to consider and implement.
PLUS and most importantly an effective coach will hold you truly accountable once a plan is developed and agreed upon.
So whether you are a professional golfer, tennis player, baseball player, business owner, executive or aspiring entrepreneur, a business coach’s job is to evaluate, train, critique, hold accountable, support and drive you to maximize your potential whether that means winning a championship game or achieving personal and organizational success in the future.
As the saying goes, if you want a “friend” get a puppy. If you want “true growth” and success for yourself and your business, invest in yourself and get a coach.
By Bill Sifflard, Vice President of the Coaching Division at Chet Holmes International and a CHI Master Executive Coach