At Mahler, we believe that small group, seminar style teaching is a critical ingredient for successful individual improvement. We are often asked to provide individual, one-on-one coaching as well. For very senior people with both a high need to change their leadership style and a high need for confidentiality, one-on-one coaching can work well.
Over the years, however, we have learned that the best coaching model is one which involves the whole organization system. The systems approach acknowledges that any leader is part of a system of interrelationships. Thus, a VP Operations in a financial institution is embedded in a matrix of relationships with customers, peers, direct reports and indirect reports. The individual is responsible for managing the culture of the team, the way accountability is managed and the level of talent in the organization.
In our experience, opening up the target of the coaching to include the system of interrelationships is much more predictive of success.
Our approach to coaching is to interview both the coaching subject and the extended members of his/her team. We make heavy use of a wide variety of assessments and feedback surveys to get an accurate picture of both the individual and the team. Because of the strong business backgrounds of our coaches, we tend to focus our coaching efforts on the individual’s management of his or her business informed by an understanding of the individual leader’s habitual strengths and opportunities for improvement.
Coaching in the Context of the Classroom
In many of the corporate universities we conduct, our instructors spend several hours with each participant. In these discussions, we focus on the interpretation of the many feedback surveys and assessments that a student is exposed to. At the appropriate time, we work with individual students on their change efforts, back home action plans and leadership styles. We also focus on their management convictions and career plans.
Executive coaching is a growing part of our practice. If you are interested in engaging an executive coach, please call Philip Janson directly at 201-797-4445.