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Can You Improve Your Game With A Coach?

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I love Charles M. Schultz’s quote: “Life is like a ten speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use.” I’ve tried to use all my gears through the years…just can’t help myself. I have always been curious and loved to learn. Thankfully, my curiosity just took me on my latest adventure to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, to earn my Master Business Coach credential at the Fowler School of Business & Executive Coaching. It was a profound learning experience. You may have heard of Berry Fowler, the “Entrepreneur’s Entrepreneur,” and the founder of Sylvan Learning Centers, the nation’s leading provider of supplemental education to school-age children.

When I started my business some 20+ years ago, I had no idea where it would lead. There weren’t many professional speakers and especially not many or any executive coaches. Today, everybody and their brother thinks they are a professional speaker and life coach. Unfortunately, that doesn’t say much for my profession. When you are dealing with people’s emotions, passions, and goals, you are dealing with very intimate and serious issues.

I have always considered myself a teacher at heart. Berry Fowler asked us to write our vision statements last week. Mine reads: I am in business to educate, inspire, and motivate individuals and organizations to a higher level with my FMG Theory of Management. The obvious next question is…”What is your FMG Theory of Management?”

F = Have Fun

M = Make Money

G = Do Good

Not necessarily in that order. I have come to the conclusion that students learn best when t hey are having fun.

I’ve always loved seeing light bulbs come on in people’s heads. Yes, I love those “AHA” moments when a student understands some concept.

One of my responsibilities as a Master Business Coach (MBC) is to help my “coachees” slow down and look at where they are now and where they want to be in five years and then 10 years. I came by my coaching career quite by accident. Some years ago, one of my students, an entrepreneur, asked me if I would help him get “unstuck.” He felt overwhelmed with his professional world and wanted help sorting it out. It has been an honor and joy to work with him and it has been immensely gratifying to see him unravel his issues and get “unstuck.” In the beginning of our coaching relationship, I asked him to tell his life story in six words. He said, “I have time to fix this.” How profound! If we are breathing, we still have time to fix those unsettling issues in our lives.

On May 23, 2013, I received the Master Business Coach designation from the Fowler School of Business & Executive Coaching. Even though I have been coaching for years, I am proud to now hold this credential. I researched many programs before deciding to enroll with them. The Fowler faculty reminded us that coaching is not telling folks what to do and how to do it, consulting, or therapy. Coaching is, in its simplest form, being “other-centered” in a way that fosters discovery, understanding, and clarity so that the “coachee” finds his own answers and solutions. A Master Business Coach helps corporate executives think like athletes…winning athletes. What would you think of an athlete trying to achieve his goals without a top coach? Even forward thinking managers have discovered that the same skills coaches use to create winning athletes also work in a business setting. According to Right Management Consultants, 86% of companies said they used coaching to sharpen the skills of individuals who have been identified as future organizational leaders.

So what exactly does an Executive Coach do? The professional coach evaluates, challenges, and supports a client so that s/he achieves performance goals and has greater satisfaction in both work and personal life. Quite simply, the coach helps the client discover that there is more to life than making a living…it’s about designing one’s life so that it is fulfilling and meaningful. What would you think of a driver who didn’t know his destination? So what are you doing that you should not be doing? How is that affecting your life and your business? What do you want to do instead?

A coach can help you plug into your intuitive wisdom and increase your ability to find solutions you might have missed.

If you are considering working with a coach, it is critical that you do your homework. Consider the coach’s qualifications. Start with clear intentions about how coaching will further your important goals. The good coach helps the “coachee” achieve agreed upon goals. Like good parents, good coaches foster independence. Great coaches sniff out hidden truths — they are curious and ask penetrating questions. They have the ability to turn over rocks and discover what lies beneath. If you sense that you may benefit from an Executive Coach, search for a qualified professional who is the real deal. It just may change your life forever.


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