You've decided to seek out additional help and resources for your upper-level management, but aren't exactly sure of the specific outcomes you want to strive towards. You're in luck - because today, we're going to help you discover the most common executive coaching goals.
Whether you're hoping to improve communication, confidence, decision making, or delegation - there is no shortage of goals you can set and strive towards.
The tricky part is choosing one or two and coming up with metrics to compare against over time and determine if real progress is being made or not - but you need not worry, because we're going to touch on this element of executive coaching, too!
By the end of this article, you'll feel confident in which goals you should be setting, what you can get out of executive coaching, and how you should go about getting started. We've got a lot to cover, so let's not waste any more time!
Just based on the name alone you can probably surmise what executive coaching is - it's coaching for your executives, of course. But we want to get a bit more specific.
To us, this type of coaching engagement is a bit more complex - it seeks to improve your executive's ability to influence successful outcomes in their position.
As you can imagine, there is a myriad of factors that go into "influencing successful outcomes" - that's where our different goals come in.
The first step before even setting a goal should be evaluating where there is room for improvement. You may end up deciding to undertake an executive talent assessment to identify the missing pieces and seek out an executive coach once you have an idea of what you're hoping to get out of the coaching process.
In the meantime, we'll start with some common goals we see clients laying out for the coaching process.
Now that you have a better grasp on what exactly executive coaching is, we'll take some time to lay out a few goals you can have if you don't already have some in mind.
One key thing to remember when taking on coaching for your executives is that we aren't here exclusively to work with underperformers.
A lot of businesses come to us when one of their executives is drowning and they need help getting them back on track. There is nothing wrong with this at all - but it's not the ideal time to seek out coaching.
Executive coaching works best when the coaches can truly dedicate the time and mental bandwidth to the coach.
When asking the question of "what goals should I have for executive coaching?" you have to understand that this is not a one-size-fits-all answer. Your organization is its own unique environment, with unique challenges that only you are aware of.
To truly answer this question, we'd need to take a look into your business and see where your current strengths and weakness lie to identify areas of improvement.
Now, with that said, below you will find some of the most common goals businesses set when they undertake coaching.
Who do the big decisions fall on in your organization? To an extent, you'll have a say in these as the owner or CEO - but at the end of the day, you're hoping your executives can pull the trigger quickly on these decisions.
You're probably aware that effective decision-making is a skill - and for your executives, it's an important one. Sometimes, the fear of judgment, prejudices, or preconceived notions will cloud one's ability to make decisions in the heat of the moment.
If you find that your leaders struggle with making the right decision at the right time, this may be one of the goals you set for them. Your executive coach should be able to help your executive zoom out so they can see the bigger picture and understand how to make decisions that positively impact the long term.
The biggest responsibility your executives have is leading their team. This is something that a lot of people believe you are born with - but, you can actually improve the skills necessary for effective leadership.
Some of the skills that fall under this umbrella include communication, delegation, empathy, among many others.
Because leadership is so important for your executives, you may end up seeking out leadership development programs for the executive in question - which is a part of coaching.
If the executive makes a mistake in their work, it's their fault. If a member of their team makes a mistake though?
It's still their fault.
Becoming accountable for the team they lead is not an easy task - but it's necessary. Many executives will struggle with this, especially early on.
Coaching can help them learn how to hold not just their team, but themselves, accountable for any issues that arise.
This is a really great executive coaching goal to set out with because confidence is everything to an executive. If your leaders aren't confident, it will be all too evident in their work. The other skills we've discussed above, such as leadership, accountability, and decision making - will all fall short without confidence.
Coaching can help the individual eliminate negative self-talk and improve areas of their life that will contribute to higher levels of confidence. This involves coming up with strategies to help eliminate doubt.
Sometimes, your goals for executive coaching will be a bit more obscure than what we've listed above. Maybe your executives are simply stressed out and feel alone. They need someone who's been in their shoes, can shoulder some of that stress, and help them understand how to cope and overcome.
Or, maybe you're hoping your executives are struggling with focus and clarity - as they're stretched across multiple roles and leading teams. Their job is overwhelming, and maybe they need help with balance, organization, and planning.
We could go on and on - there is no shortage of worthy goals you and your executives can lay out. That's the fun part - is looking at the big picture and seeing where you have room for improvement.
So, don't limit yourself to any of the goals we've listed above. Maybe they make sense for you, or maybe they don't - maybe you have something else in mind. Whatever the case, let's talk about how you turn these goals into a reality.
Ok, now that you have a baseline for what goals you should set for coaching, how do you go about making these a reality?
Of course, the first step is finding the right coach - one who is well equipped to help you meet those goals. But you also have to understand that the onus also falls on the individual being coached. Making sure the relationship is a good fit is more important than you may realize at first.
Coaching has become more and more popular and is readily available to any business around the globe. There are agencies offering coaching that may even specialize in your exact niche!
You'll have to do your due diligence and find a coach that has a track record of actually achieving the goals they set out on. If your coach cannot furnish any sort of case studies or testimonials, likely, they've never actually brought a business from point A to point B.
Fortunately for you, we'll share a little insider's secret that will end your search for the perfect coach. We want to first talk about how the person being coached factors into meeting these goals, though.
Have you considered how receptive your executive is to coaching yet? While many people will jump at the opportunity to take on help and become better at what they do, others will shy away and put a wall up.
It's up to you to prepare your executive for coaching and ensure they're not just willing, but eager, to be coached. If they don't have the right attitude about this arrangement, you'll be behind the eight-ball before you even start. The likelihood of meeting the executive coaching goals you set out with will be slim.
But, with all that said - we have a feeling you wouldn't be here reading this article if you didn't wholeheartedly believe that your executive would be grateful for the opportunity to work with a coach. So, it's time to meet your coach - Harold Hillman, and the Sigmoid Curve team.
Sigmoid Curve Can Help Bring Your Executive Coaching Goals To Life
At Sigmoid Curve, we specialize in helping businesses and organizations get the very best out of their most important asset - their people.
We have extensive experience in New Zealand and around the globe, working with some of the top businesses in their respective industries. Our track record of helping businesses achieve their executive coaching goals speaks for itself - and we can help you do the same.
No matter what goals you've set out with, we're here to help you make them a reality. When you choose us as your executive coach, you'll find that your executives thrive unlike ever before - and thus, their teams and your bottom line do as well.
Whether you're seeking improvements in decision making, communication, leadership, confidence - you name it, we've got real-world experience in making it happen.
Reach out today if you'd like to discuss the unique challenges you and your organization are presented with, and how can factor into helping you overcome them.
As you ponder how to get the most out of your executives, coaching will no doubt come up in the conversation. Today, we'll help you evaluate whether or not this is the right approach for you and your organizations by laying out some examples of how executive coaching can help your upper-level management, and of course, your business.