• Nature coaching Poppy field

The boss as coach

Posted on Wed December 7, 2022.

Coaching is a way of life.

It ensures robust and meaningful relationships, positive emotions and a vibrant social environment. These form the foundation of every success and happiness in life - Both personal and professional.

As the world become more volatile, complex and unsure organisations can now only survive when responsibility and creative solution finding is shared between all members of the organisation. The role of the boss was forced to be transformed in the last decennia into someone who is firstly caring and kind. Leaders are now expected to be an example for others, an empathetic motivator, an innovator and lastly a coach. 

So, what exactly can leaders take from coaching? I believe that it is firstly active listening and qualitative questioning that coaches practice. 

Who can listen better knows more. Many bosses lean still towards a chronic "know it better" attitude. Before they allow their team-members to speak out many leaders have already judged, decided and communicated their way forward. Research has shown that teams are much more likely to reach their goals when active listening is being practiced within the team. 

Who questions, leads. Every leader knows this. What makes the real difference here is what type of questions are asked by the boss. Qualitative and open W-questions (when, what, where, whom, how,....etc) provide a multitude of information compared to closed (yes or no) questions. Who is informed better, understands better and makes better decisions.

Leaders can learn to step into active listening and asking qualitative open questions which changes the team-dynamics completely and creates space for others to take responsibility, shine and grow.

What do you believe can leaders learn and apply from "the coaching way of life" in order to lead more successfully?