So you have started your business and there seem to be 101 things that you need to take care of and everything is demanding your attention! – the faster you dig the more the more there is to work on – being pulled in many directions means it is easy for you to lose focus – the more you lose focus the more overwhelmed you feel – so it’s a kind of catch 22 – this is where coaching can really help you identify the most important thing to work on – and having a measurable goal to follow – it is easy for the mind to become a sort of hamster wheel – that keeps spinning – instead of being practical and chunking things down – so one goal of coaching is to always keep things moving forward in steady measurable steps!
As a business owner another issue that you may face is that because you are effective and accomplished at some of the things that you do, and because of the type of person that you are, that people become quite dependent on you for all kinds of decision making – this can lead to a kind of over dependence on you for all the decisions, both small and large, that need to be made – the more you help them the more they seem to need your help.
Again coaching can be excellent for helping you see the pattern of this over dependence and then taking the appropriate steps to make others better able to make their own decisions – you can call this the coaching habit – where you help your employees think things through for themselves!
The other issue that Michael Bungay Stanier mentions in his wonderful book ‘the Coaching Habit’ is where you may get disconnected from the work that matters – as he says in his book – ‘you have to help people do more of the work that has impact and meaning.
The more we do work that has no real purpose, the less engaged and motivated we are.’
One of the biggest things you can do as an employer is make sure that all your employees know how much you appreciate the work that they do – it is surprising – I remember one employer I worked for who would come into the office and shake each of our hands personally as a way of greeting in the morning – and of thanking us for the work we are doing. I still remember that because it was so unusual and effective – obviously it can be over done but it is worth remembering – another contractor I knew would take his whole crew out to a soccer match a couple of times a year as a thank you and he had a very solid reliable work crew that was very loyal to him!
In a future blog I will speak to the effectiveness of developing a coaching habit with you and the team that works for you! It helps both you and the team reconnect to work that has impact and meaning.