Coaching Dilemma – Do All Managers Need to Be Fixed?
I know this is a provocative title, yet, I wrote it this on purpose. Though the years I have been coaching people – even before coaching was attached to the description – and it continues to amaze me how often a manager is sent to me to be fixed.
In fact, we used to get a number of managers and employees to our Personal Development workshops whereby some of the participants were actually told – “You’re going to this workshop to get Fixed!” Interesting and sad at the same time.
The vast majority of the time the manager or person was not broken, in disrepair, corrupt or “damaged.” What they had in common was a different behavioral style than the rest of the group. Therefore, they got labeled as bad or damaged relative to people skills.
This truly became noticeable to us when we began to get a steady stream of women sent to us by one company. At first, I thought it was an old boy group that didn’t understand how to manage women. Then I realized that was not the case – both genders were sending this women to us.
What I realized was every one of the women sent to me were hard charging and aggressive warrior types who were direct and forceful in their behavior. Other people did not know how to deal with these women since they were not the nurturing type of model established by – well – our mothers.
The key was to explain to these women that first they were not broke, just misunderstood. I encouraged them to be true to their style since they are the ones usually creating a consistent string of results. Ironically, the organization sending me all the women talked about profits and being proactive and fast paced. Yet, the truth was just the opposite – the organization’s culture called for not rocking the ship, making waves or forcing people out of their comfort zones. A Dilemma if ever there was one.
The lesson to be learned from this post is very few people are actually broke – only the truly greedy, evil minded and corrupt are broke. What is usually the case is a behavioral style is not accepted by a group of people – peers or direct reports.
Coaching and behavioral assessments can correct this issue – both for the person being coached and the ones involved for non-acceptance of their style. Coaching and training on effective communication styles usually corrects the entire cause – not just the symptom. Think cause and effect to figure out what is truly going on within your organization.
Oh, yes, I did coach the hard charging women how to remain true to themselves while learning how to flex or blend with the ones around them on a daily basis. The feedback we got came from both the coaching client and their peers, managers and direct reports was very positive. The only real difference in the person being coached was awareness of how to work better with others.
I have been coaching managers, executives, owners and fast trackers for over twenty years, so if you feel you have a need for coaching – done the right way – please contact me at 901-757-4434 or email me voss at inneractiveconsulting “dot” com. (Sorry about the unusual spelling here. Just really tried of spam and those pesky robots mining my email address. Thanks for understanding.)