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What do you expect of the leader (coaching partner) and their organization?

If the leader isn’t committed to personal and professional development, coaching may not be the best choice. For executive coaching to be most effective, the leader needs to make the following commitments:

  • Allocate adequate time (typically 90 minutes) for coaching sessions
  • Be willing to practice new behaviors
  • Accept feedback on blind spots
  • Reflect on successes and failures
  • Consider different perspectives and points of view
  • Risk challenging current beliefs
  • Follow-through on coaching assignments

The organization has responsibilities, too. It is the context for coaching; therefore the goals and purpose of coaching need to be clearly articulated from an organizational perspective. If there are performance issues, it is the responsibility of the organization to provide this feedback to the leader in advance of coaching.

The leader will need time to participate in the coaching sessions, and time to make changes. Leaders generally need four to six hours each month for coaching conversations and three to six months to make changes.

On-going feedback is essential to support the change process. Key stakeholders within the organization need to be willing to provide the leader with feedback. This includes periodic three-way conversations among the coach, the coaching partner and a representative from the organization.

The organization needs to trust the coach and the leader to have confidential conversations that align with the desired goals. Last, the organizational culture needs to support professional growth and development.