Enhanced Executive Decision-Making through Coaching
Stepping into a leadership role after a well-respected founder leader who shares familial ties can be a daunting experience. The new Executive Director (ED) was moved into position quickly and found herself navigating the impact of legacy behaviors, a need for an organizational refresh, and other compliance issues. Under the former ED’s tenure, the organization’s governance and operations were strictly in her purview (heavy top-down leadership). This system created dysfunction in the organization as the leadership team was not optimized to its full potential to drive organizational success. Due to the complexity and number of changes that needed to occur, we included coaching for the new ED in order to support her as she led the organization through the transition.
“It definitely helped to have the coaching language in front of me; it made me feel more in control.”
What We Did
Coaching was a safe place created for the ED to talk about the leadership struggles. The coach became part of select calls between coaching sessions to gain context for the organization and observe the ED’s behaviors. We established a weekly cadence to work with the ED on the goals and actions necessary to implement organizational changes.
What We Discovered
Ongoing coaching and observation uncovered the leader’s struggle with follow-through and that she was overwhelmed by the deliverables. Our agile process helped her set more attainable actions to deliver results and we were able to adjust our delivery at the right level for the ED and her team.
The coach reported that the ED was able to practice hard conversations with staff around change and build confidence through coaching. Everyone involved in the project, internally and externally, saw a dramatic difference in the new ED’s executive decision-making skills from the beginning to the end of the project.
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