In working with coaching clients, the first step is to establish goals to be reached at the end of the coaching process. Clarity of goals and prioritizing those goals is how we are able to establish a road map to success. We have to know where we are headed in order to measure our progress along the way.
Many of my clients have very specific financial and business growth goals. The challenge in the coaching process is when we begin to identify what it takes to get there. The long established habits and unconscious behaviors of individuals, as well as the patterns among team members, often need to be addressed in order to reach that next level.
What Got You Here Won’t Get You There
In the best-selling book What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, top Executive Coach Marshall Goldsmith gives us examples of the challenges successful people face when they are making changes. It is hard not to feel that all of our qualities, both good and bad, are what have led us to accomplish our goals up to this point. It’s often difficult for a successful person to acknowledge and understand how some of his habits and quirks may have contributed directly to his accomplishments, but now may actually be a hindrance to his future success.
Different Skills Are Needed as a Business Grows
Many successful entrepreneurs work hard to build their businesses with passion, intensity, and a “never say die” attitude. However, as one’s business grows and requires more resources, coordination, and collaboration, different skills are needed. The need for honest feedback is critical, as well as developing the capacity to observe and assess oneself without judgment. The latter requires great courage and effort on the part of the coaching client. Once awareness is raised and necessary changes are identified and agreed to, we begin the process of consciously changing behaviors and developing new habits that will serve our success in the future.
From Unconscious Incompetence to Unconscious Competence
This is a four-step process during which a person moves from unconscious incompetence to conscious incompetence, then to conscious competence, and finally to unconscious competence when a new habit is firmly established. This process stumps many clients, particularly in the conscious competence stage when they are practicing new habits that are not yet second nature. No one likes to feel clumsy and awkward about doing things, especially successful people, but without this awkward phase, real change cannot happen. Establishing these new habits takes a minimum of thirty days.
We All Have the Capacity to be Peak Performers
If peak performance was easy to accomplish, we would all be peak performers. We all have the capacity to be peak performers, but there is a price to pay. This tradeoff involves the willingness to eliminate what is not working and substitute something which will work better.
People have goals they want to achieve but are often looking for ways to avoid the tradeoffs or hard work that may be required. There is no silver bullet. Anyone who has learned a sport incorrectly, such as golf or tennis, can attest to the difficulty of unlearning bad habits to establish new ones. It takes time and lots of practice, as well as commitment and persistence.
A Coach Holds You Accountable
Having someone like a coach there to hold you accountable to what you said was important to you can be extremely beneficial in the process of change and goal achievement. Working with an experienced coach is an important key to helping you move through the process of change to achieve your goals for peak performance.