It’s not about you. I wish I could make this statement and move on to the next topic, but I can’t. Not just yet. This one needs more attention.
On a very basic level, there are two people involved in a coaching relationship: the coach and the person being coached. Although many managers know the coaching process is about the person being coached, they still make it about themselves. Knowing this and getting it to the point where it’s being reflected in your coaching are two different things.
Here’s the type of thinking that limits the effectiveness of your coaching and makes the process about you:
- I don’t want to say the wrong thing.
- I don’t want to look bad.
- I don’t want to push too hard.
- I don’t want to be rejected.
- I don’t want to be the bad guy.
- I don’t want to blow it.
- I really want them to win.
- I have to deliver value.
- This has got to work. I don’t want to have to recruit again.
- They have to turn it around. I have numbers to hit!
Do you notice the one word that is used in each statement above? I, I, I, I, I! Making the coaching process about you is the number one roadblock to successful coaching.
Instead of making the coaching process about you and how much you can gain by having your salespeople achieve their objectives, make it about them and how much value you can co-create with them, without any attachments to the outcome.
If you are experiencing any resistance to your coaching or if you find yourself pushing your people too hard during a coaching session, look at the subject of your process. Chances are, your process is about you!
Once you shift your focus toward the person you are coaching, you will immediately be relieved of the unnecessary pressure to look good and perform.
After all, if you are making the coaching process about you and are primarily concerned with your own performance, you won’t have the mindset, focus, or energy to capture the salesperson’s interest, respect, and trust.
Make the coaching process about the salesperson, about your sales team, and the value you can deliver rather than about what you can gain if your team starts performing better. Once you do so, the benefits for all that follow as a result of your coaching become the natural by-product of your selfless efforts and good intentions.
Keith Rosen is on a quest – a COACHQUEST! It all began here with his 2008 best-seller Coaching Salespeople Into Sales Champions (this article is an unedited excerpt from that book; Ch. 3, Pages 70-71). This is just a taste from the archives as Keith prepares for the launch of his all-new coaching book, COACHQUEST—stories of globally transforming the world’s caring leaders into world-class coaches. Get updates at COACHQUEST.com