executive coach philosophyleadership and executive coach
barbara braham



What is your Philosophy?


Any executive coach will have a personal philosophy or worldview that they bring to their work with leaders. In some cases the worldview is tacit, and in other cases it is explicit. I believe you deserve to know what my biases and guiding principles are. I am delighted to discuss any or all of these with you.


Leadership is a way of being, not just a set of skills. Leadership requires presence, authenticity, courage and the capacity to manage oneself in the face of ambiguity. My coaching addresses issues of being and not just issues of doing.

Leadership is as much about capacity as it is about competency. We know a lot about leadership competencies, and are just beginning to appreciate the significance of leadership capacity. A leader’s capacity is based on their developmental stage and determines what they can and can’t see, and how effectively they use the competencies they’ve acquired. My coaching addresses both capacity and competency.


Leadership requires reflection as well as action. One of my goals as an executive coach is to help a leader become a reflective practitioner. In other words, I hope to develop the capacity of the leader to pause and reflect regularly rather than getting caught in the trap of busyness and reactivity. Over time a leader can build the capacity to reflect in the heat of the moment, and not just after a crucial event or conversation.


Change is normal. One of the key distinctions between leadership and management is that leaders deal with change and managers deal with the status quo. Leaders need exemplary skills to initiate, manage and execute change. This requires the capacity to change themselves when necessary, understand the emotional and technical sides of change, and transform resistance to change. My work supports leaders in their efforts to become change masters.


Situations are the result of multiple causes and conditions. Today's business environment is composed of complex interdependencies. There is no one to blame, and no one to praise. Rather there are myriad contributors and factors in both success and failure. Leaders need a deep systemic understanding of their organization, their industry, the marketplace and the world. I coach leaders to become systems thinkers.


Leadership is an endeavor of the heart and the head. To be maximally effective, a leader needs to bring his/her whole self to the task. That means both wisdom (the head) and compassion (the heart) are needed. When these are in balance great things can happen. I hope to support leaders to integrate what has been compartmentalized.


Self-awareness is necessary for professional development and growth. Before a behavior, mindset, assumption or worldview can change, there must be awareness. Thus, professional growth and development rest upon an appetite for inquiry into oneself. I partner with leaders to deepen their self-awareness so that choice and change are possible.