The PeopleCap Playbook

Timely insights and actionable people strategies for leaders.

You Don’t Have to Go It Alone: Executive Coaching Through Crisis and Beyond

The old adage “it’s lonely at the top” has endured for generations because it is a universal truth. As an Executive Leader, you are responsible for the decisions and actions of every employee in the organization. You are responsible, not only for making sure the trains run on time, but also for the overall direction of the company. Recently, the number of crises and urgent issues has increased exponentially – as have levels of exhaustion and stress. In the midst of trying to triage present issues, you are responsible for simultaneously finding the time and headspace to envision the future.

In the midst of this massive disruption, it is even more essential that executive leaders have the skills and support to manage an organization effectively. The most successful leaders rely on a team of experts to help inform, advise, and give insight from multiple perspectives. No one person can achieve best results alone. But that’s exactly where many leaders are feeling right now: like they are going at this alone.

I would encourage you to find an executive coach you really click with and partner with them. An effective executive coach can help you:

  • Gain Greater Clarity – When everything is moving as fast as it is, it’s hard to focus and see ourselves, others, or situations clearly. Self-awareness is critical for organizational effectiveness and having clarity is imperative for effective decision-making.
  • Be a More Effective Leader – Right now, more than ever, leaders need a full arsenal of leadership skills and strengths. Gaps in leadership ability are being exposed at an accelerated rate as more employees are working remotely. As leaders face uncharted territory, the skills and capabilities that have served them well to this point may not be enough to navigate the present and reach the next level.
  • Pressure Test Your Ideas and Actions – Often executives do not have anyone who will be completely candid and willing to challenge their decisions, behaviors, or responses. A skilled coach can be an objective “mirror” that is not skewed by self-preservation needs or office politics.
  • Building Stronger Relationships – At the end of the day, leadership is about relationships. Our relationships are heavily influenced by our personalities, unconscious biases, and our communication styles. Understanding how to relate to, engage with, and influence people is imperative for effective leadership and decision-making.
  • Manage Stress and Time – As demands increase, stress levels rise, and time management is even more difficult. Until our stress levels and calendars are under control, however, our minds stay stuck in reactive crisis and triage mode – unable to clearly think and reflect. We end up getting pulled in the direction of the next urgent crisis – working longer and harder, but never getting anything crossed of our to-do list.

If you have questions about coaching and whether it could be helpful to you, please reach out I am happy to share any insights and experiences I have – as either an executive coach or executive with a coach.

These are interesting times, but you don’t have to go through them alone.