Nic Woodthorpe-Wright has been coaching leaders for over 20 years now. Listen to what Executive Coaching is and what is the difference it can make.
Here the highlights of this episode:
Coaching, executive coaching, leadership coaching, it's ultimately all very similar. You need to bring in each of those niches a certain skill set or understanding. The process of coaching is the same and the underlying competencies and skills that you need to bring are not dissimilar in all of those places. But really, it's about having a conversation (it's moving now into groups and teams) on a one-to-one basis, with someone that really is there in service of what is trying to happen and holding the space for that person to go on the journey through the use of powerful questions, holding the space, speaking, intuitively sometimes, not holding on to outcomes. And as a coach, our role is literally to hold that space and create the opportunity for new spaces of discussion and thoughts and feelings as well.
The difference between Personal Coaching and Executive Coaching is mainly context. You're working in a business environment and you are coaching people that are looking to work on ideas and challenges and problems and development in a work scenario. That doesn't mean that those aren't showing up in other spaces, whether that be community or personal life and so forth but the focus now has come and the potential information and feedback is coming from a corporate perspective.
So, there's a critical moment or the hamster wheel stops and we fall over. In this critical moment we have to start asking questions and mostly, if we're working only on our sort of answering our own questions, there is a finite amount of information that we have in our system that we can use. So, having a coach is about how do I access a deeper level of information that does sit within me and that's not to say it's only as an intellectual awareness. You and I know that this is about what I can feel intuitively, what information sits physically, embodied in me. There is information. There's a host of knowledge, wisdom, understanding that is way beyond the conscious understanding at this moment in time and it's not that the coach does anything crazy or mad or weird but can help you access that information through a whole set of tools and processes that they've studied through their journey and this is why you want to work with a certified coach.
I have worked with very senior people myself and sometimes, just to get them out of their chair, I mean it sounds like not much, right? but to get them out of their chair, from behind their desk, can have a huge impact. Because there's a lot of safety behind a desk, especially when you're a very senior person because that's where a lot of your power sits. To move them out of that space and just to sit them in a different part of the room and you can ask the same question you asked that was when we were in there behind that. And you will have a whole different world show up.
Nobody's going to have breakthroughs in a state of fear and so our role as coaches is to come in and be in deep service of that higher version of the other individual that's sitting opposite us and how we do that is that we need to create a number of things. One is we need to create a confidential container within which that conversation is going to happen. The other is we need to do other design work that helps that individual go, okay fine, now I understand and actually, I can say what I like and what I don't like here.
Now, coaching can solve problems but that's not the primary choice that we are here. We are here because we know there's so much more of each of those individuals that you have in your business.
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