I am a leader, and for me leadership means so much. Just as I lead as a partner in a CPA and consulting firm, you lead in the banking industry. And just as I lead people, projects, and hopefully lasting impacts for the legacy of the firm, you do the same every day for your financial institution. I lead the more tenured as they move into retirement and the next generation of leaders, who will not lead the same way the generations before them have led.
I have a go-to leadership suggestion — coaching. Telling adults what to do is fruitless; it may work for a while, but eventually it’s a long, uphill battle. So I prefer to coach.
I love the coaching part of my job. Coaching means explaining the why and leading others to their what and their how. It means requiring others to think before they act. And it means allowing others to make mistakes, learn from them, and mitigate them in the future. It doesn’t mean leaving the safe open, but it does mean explaining all the consequences of leaving the safe open in a way that makes people feel personally responsible for keeping it closed.
My first “Aha!” when it came to coaching was that coaching is not an event. It doesn’t occur just a once a month during scheduled one-on-one meetings. Coaching is active in:
- Every conversation (verbal or written).
- Every action (because actions “speak” louder than words).
- Every decision I make (or don’t make).
When I remember this, my days go better. When I forget this (and go back to tell, tell, tell) my days can get muuuuuch longer.
Do you have a coaching go-to? Please share it! It’s always great when leaders can learn from others! Also, if you ever want to learn more about coaching, including securing coaching training for your management teams or even hiring your own personal Executive Coach, please contact your relationship executive for more information.