What is common to both leadership and sports coaching? What is different? How transferable are the principles of coaching? And what can leadership coaches learn from sports managers and coaches?
To answer these question and more I turned to an old friend of mine, Pete Walton. After a successful career as a manager in business he transferred his talents to Premier League football as a referee. During a professional career spanning nearly 20 years, Pete refereed a number of notable matches, including the 2003 final of the Football League Trophy and the FA Community Shield in 2008. He officiated in the Premier League from 2003 to 2012. From 2013 he was General Manager of the Professional Referee Organization in North America until Howard Webb took over in January 2018. From 2019 Pete has worked as a referee analyst for BT Sport’s coverage of the UEFA Champions League, discussing key decisions and explaining the usage of VAR, both in-game and post-match. He also regularly appears on ESPN FC. He was part of ITV’s pundit team at this summer’s Euro 2020 to provide expert insight on all the major decisions during games.
The worlds of sport and business have been closely linked for as long as I can remember. Major sports events are big business. They involve big cities, big egos, and big bucks for the players and team owners. Perhaps big business – indeed, all business – can be seen as sport. Just listen to the sports-like language used by people in business. I often use sports metaphors myself in training and coaching sessions.
With Pete’s help, in this this article we’re looking at ten key areas of sport and leadership coaching.
Hans Augusteijn: What are the Top 10 themes as his career moves onwards and upwards?
We last checked in with Hans Augusteijn on the progress of his leadership coaching journey back in 2018. A lot has happened with him since then in terms of his career progression. He has been moving on and moving up. After 17 years with Maersk he has a new role in a new organisation. Hans is now Chief Strategy Officer with Stolt Tankers in Rotterdam.
I have worked with Hans since 2012. In this interview I asked him to reflect on the top 10 themes that have dominated his recent leadership coaching journey.
In part 1 of this blog, I raised some questions about the need to change our approach to leadership during and beyond this coronavirus crisis to nurture and sustain the quality of organisations’ climates. In so doing, I revisited some of organisational psychology’s foundational theories, notably the work of Kurt Lewin. In this second part, focusing on Lewin’s seminal environment formula that avers behaviour to be a function of personality and situation, I explore why understanding one’s own and your employees’ personality is so important to creating a healthy climate.
As business leaders, Learning and Development professionals, coach trainers and educators, what can we do to help make coaching training really stick?
The case for sticky coaching
Many businesses expect to increase their spending on coaching in the coming years, both on external coaches and on developing their own internal coaches. It’s no surprise then to find that conversations are increasingly turning to how we can make sure that coach training, whether as a formal, ‘pre-contracted’ activity or as a more ad hoc approach to unlocking potential and improving performance, ‘sticks’. At NG Bailey we’re no different. Over recent years we’ve taken four steps that are starting to make a real difference in our quest for sticky coaching; I’d like to share them with you.
The regular interactions between leaders and team members are what form the foundation for an engaging workplace and yet it is an area with room for improvement.
In our team we will soon receive our annual employee engagement survey results. This a regular exercise in many companies and one that sheds light on dynamics of team performance, culture and wellbeing.
It is however only providing a snapshot. A moment in time with limited scope for understanding nuance, personal differences and context. The feedback is highly important and the initial response rate also provides an interesting insight, yet this data must be used as part of a wider approach to engagement if we are to truly create aligned & high performing organisations.
A leader should not become a master in resolving conflicts – but rather a master in avoiding, stopping and reducing the possibility of conflicts occurring in the first place.
Have you ever heard or met “a Master in resolving conflicts”? No. Well, you might be one yourself.
Weare all Master of something
Like in every other aspect in life we can become experts in
any field, by doing something right for a long time, changing your wrongs into
rights to a point where you can give advice, create awareness, provide recommendations,
or even give instructions on subjects that we master.
When it comes to conflicts, especially in the working environment, a leader should not become a Master in resolving those conflicts but rather a Master in avoiding, stopping, reducing the possibilities for such conflicts to occur.
Now, please don’t get me wrong, they will always be conflicts but in the same way a leader is prepared to resolve them his concern should be creating a team environment where conflicts are less.
I had leaders who created conflicts and that is even worse.
They say it allowed different ideas to be known and keeps team on their feet.
In my opinion that could not be further away from the truth, such leaders are
only creating several momentums that will unavoidable end up in good valuable
members of the team to leave and restrain new eligible ones to join.
serious disagreement or argument if not handled on time, can linger to
the point that it blocks creativity, participation and obviously there goes
teamwork through the window. For me the biggest and most important part of
resolving any conflict is not in how good communicator you are as how great
listener you are.
When you really listen others is when the magic starts. The conflict might not be generated by what is being said but by what is not being said and in that case, if you are not paying attention you will always face the same issue no matter how well you think you handled it.
will also allow you to find the root cause and eliminate it once and for all
making you a real Master in resolving conflicts.
We continue to follow the fortunes of a senior leader in Northern Europe over a six year period as he applies his coaching skills in new and more challenging roles.
We last checked in with Hans Augusteijn on the progress of his personal coaching journey back in 2016. A lot has happened with him since then in terms of career progression and taking on bigger and more global leadership challenges. In 2017 Hans was promoted to Global Head of Intermodal Transport for Maersk Transport and Logistics Division. And recently this year he became Global Head of Delivery.
I went back to three key questions I asked Hans in my 2016 interview to find out where he is now on his continuing coaching journey.
How I discovered three great principles in a challenging year with the help of my Coach: Intent is Everything; Play to Your Strengths; Know Yourself.
With the end of the year approaching fast, I’m sure I’m not alone in taking a moment to reflect on the past 12 months and what it’s meant to me both personally and professionally.
Don’t worry, this isn’t one of those terrible articles titled “10 things you need to do to be a success in 2019” but I did want to share something that’s helped me, with the hope that it will help you too.
By way of context, 2018 has been a challenge. I work in a traditional industry, that faces a severe skills shortage and, if I’m honest, a distinct lack of imagination about how to solve it.
My own organisation is not without its frustrations, and our own attempts to be creative and innovative in the way that we approach the development of our people – I’m Head of Learning – can often feel like they just aren’t impacting quickly enough. It always feels like we should be doing more.
And on a personal note, earlier in the year my mum was diagnosed, quite unexpectedly, with an aggressive form of brain cancer. After a short illness she passed away in May.
As the year continued I think it’s fair to say that all the above started to take a toll. I began to “leak” as a result of my frustrations.
It is somewhat disquieting to read that the “Peter principle”, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_principle, continues to thrive in UK business. Our poor productivity performance arises because too many people gain promotion into managerial roles beyond their level of natural competence. However, in the firm featured in the FT article performance is improving.
It strikes me, however, that simply hanging up figures of Superman (is this unconscious bias by the firm’s leaders?), and doling out pork pies are rather superficial practices. The only likely outcome of this epicurean approach is hardened arteries.