Ken has been coaching executives for over five years. He is hired by companies to work with their high potential leaders on how to effectively advance through the ranks and to manage people. Ken focuses on strategy and action planning – the Doing.
Ken starts new coaching engagements by meeting with the supervisor of his client to learn how his client is perceived. He next meets with HR to identify possible career paths. Then he meets with the client to determine how the client’s perspective compares with that of his supervisor and with HR.
For this scenario, imagine Mario’s company decides to engage Ken as the coach for Mario. Ken schedules his standard pre-coaching meetings. Ken meets with Mario’s supervisor, Lynn, and asks about Mario. Lynn explains that while Mario is well-liked generally, he lacks leadership training. Lynn believes that Mario is very personable and effective with mid-level managers and he is not ready to supervise senior leaders. Next Ken meets with Heather in HR. Heather explains the company’s internal process for supporting high-potential employees. This includes a leadership training academy, cross-training, and challenging assignments to build skills. Heather provides the timelines for the training and examples of stretch assignments. Ken asks Heather about potential career paths for Mario and learns he can either move into operations management or sales and marketing. Heather shares there is less interest from other high potentials in marketing and sales. Based on what he has learned, Ken determines that Mario will be most successful in sales and marketing.
Ken scheduled his first meeting with the client, Mario. When they met, Ken asked Mario a few questions about his career, skills, and interests. Ken then suggested Mario complete a Leadership 360 Assessment for the information on how Mario is perceived by others. He also asked Mario to create a timeline of major milestones in his career thus far, and to create his projection of where his career will go in the future for awareness and planning.
Because Ken is certified in the 360 assessment, he sets it up and administers it. When the results are tabulated, he schedules a debrief with Mario to review the assessment report and for Ken to provide his analysis of the results. At the end of the debrief, Ken and Mario schedule their next session.
During the next session, Ken asks Mario a few questions about his career and what he wants. Mario shares his interest in developing as a leader. Mario also talks about his desire to develop strong connections plus his interests in projects and teams. Ken states that he thinks, based on the 360 results and Mario’s interest in connections, the sales and marketing track is best. Mario is hesitant. He shares that he had been leaning towards operations and was unsure about sales. Ken asks Mario to describe what he thought the sales role encompassed. Ken then suggests that Mario schedule time to shadow someone in sales. Mario accepts the recommendation.
In their next session, Ken invites Mario to talk about his experience shadowing in sales. Ken then asks Mario about his process to move forward with the sales and marketing career path. Mario outlines the actions. Ken congratulates Mario on his plan.
Mario then says he has something else to discuss. Ken invites Mario to talk. Mario explains he is worried that his new boss is pushing him to declare which path he wants, and he is unsure. He also shares that he does not feel like he clicks with the sales and marketing team. Ken asks Mario follow-up questions about his perceptions. Ken asks Mario to focus on his desire to advance his career and explains it means hard work. Mario agrees to rededicate himself to the effort.
When Ken invites an update in their next session, Mario immediately starts talking about his stress level, lack of time for exercise, and pressure from his girlfriend for a time.
Ken asks Mario about his strategies for managing stress. Mario shares he tends to direct his own focus to the long-term objectives. Mario also talks about rest and exercise. Mario explains his previous exercise routine and then restates he is not keeping up because of time pressures.
Ken invites Mario to explain the time pressures and Mario talks about his workload plus his effort to move into sales and marketing. Ken asks what options Mario wants to consider. Mario mentions either backing off on the plan for a move to sales and marketing or even breaking up with his girlfriend.
Ken invites Mario to consider the implications of backing off his long-term plan. Mario admits he does want to advance his career and decides to talk to his girlfriend instead and tell her to be patient.