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A Coaching Paradox

Top performers have coaches in business, politics, sports, or arts.

Some fifteen years ago, when I sat for an interview for a management consultant, trainer, and executive coach position, I had little experience in the field but a story to tell.

My taekwondo coach was, at the time, head coach for the Canadian national team. While I was sweating, aching to merit a black belt, those sparring next to me were sharpening their physical and mental skills to earn a spot in the Olympics. They traveled long distances to train with their coach. He was committed to supporting them on their way to the top.

Across town was my piano teacher, formerly conductor of the National Jazz Orchestra in Georgia. One of his gifts was to coach his students to follow intuition to find inspiration in their inner beauty for musical interpretation. "Play at the speed of your joy," he would say.

But when it came to the world of work, business, and organizations where the (economic/health/environmental/societal) impacts are so significant, my experience was that leaders and managers often plateaued. Maybe for fear of exposing weakness?

I told the recruiter that I wanted to bring a performance coaching culture to organizations, although I lacked executive coaching skills at the time. I got the job. And on day one at the office, my new coach welcomed me.

Coaching is not for the faint of heart. It takes courage (from Old French corage, from Latin cor 'heart') to hire a coach, look straight in the mirror, be challenged, face our fears and saboteurs, bring our unique talents to the fore, be visible and accountable. It takes courage to grow as a conscious leader.

We hesitate.

"The [coaching] paradox is that the very things that hold us back [from hiring a coach] are the reasons we need a coach in the first place." - Seth Godin

When Seth Godin posted A Coaching Paradox on SETH'S BLOG, it struck a chord.

I re-wrote the piece, made it mine, shared it with you.

I hope you enjoyed it!

#asksowhat |​ ​ © Dominique Bel, 2020. All Rights Reserved in all Countries.



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