They Know Execs
A good executive coach knows the executive’s “context”. They know their industry, their competitive landscape, their P&L challenges, their company’s strategic vision, marketplace barriers and opportunities.
They Get You
The coach “gets” you as an executive. Your dynamics, your accomplishments, your tendencies and your habits – seen and unseen to to you, the executive.
Your coach judges nothing. Ever.
Coaches are Curious
Your coach is curious first. They will inquire into motives, motivations, goals, values and even ‘cost-benefit ‘analysis. But the coach questions in order to help the executive fully understand.
Guide to Solutions
The coach may have a point of view – but should withhold it until the executive is really REALLY stuck. No one has ever learned anything by having someone else solve the problem for them.
Question Executive Impact
A good coach will question the impact the executive is having — not their motivations. Most of us have well intended motivations – yet it is the impact on others that makes or breaks an executive.
A good executive coach will be fully committed to supporting — not simply empathizing or sympathizing — the executive. Support offers the path of growth and change. ‘Help’ is dependent. Your coach will quite likely be empathetic and even sympathetic to many issues faced by the executive, but “work” on such issues belongs, appropriately, in the therapist’s office.
A good coach is patient. It may take some time for the executive to find the right path.
Coaches Tell it Like It They See It
A good coach is observant and truthful; more BS is not what an executive needs.
Don’t Seek the Spotlight
The coach is comfortable being anonymous. They are prepared to be out-of-the spotlight. The center of attention is never where they ought to be.