Just for a moment think of a conversation where you felt you were truly being listened to. Remember how it felt, the impact it had on you and on the conversation. Did you feel safe to share? Did you feel valued? Did you feel inspired to take action?
One of the greatest gifts we can give others, especially our coachees, is the time and the space to be listened to, really listened to. Listening to another, not just hearing the words, but really engaging with what and how the person is sharing…
Today we had a good conversation about the value of questions in the coaching exchange. The following is a compilation of what came out of that conversation. Our hope is that you continue the conversation by sharing this post and commenting with YOUR beliefs about questions.
The Coaching Out of The Box® team got together for a planning meeting and got into a good conversation about employee motivation. What follows is the thoughts we had and we would love to see you add to the list!
I’m wondering if you can give me some advice on managing my boss. I am really into trying to build on the positive with employees and I spend a lot of time in our staff meetings trying to give credit where it’s deserved and cast management decisions in a positive light. However, my boss tends to follow up my comments by saying something that sucks all the positivity out of the room. He is a really good guy and I don’t think he realizes the does it, but he speaks badly of former and current employees to me with the office door open so the people who sit nearby can hear. He also acts like employees can’t be trusted. We recently participated in a top 100 Companies to Work For survey, and people came to me and asked if I wanted us to win or if I wanted them to be honest. Of course I want honesty, but it concerns me that they would ask. Also, I recently conducted a peer review wherein employees were asked to finish the following statements about each of their peers: please do more of this, please keep doing this, and please do less of this. The response for my boss was overwhelmingly to stop making negative comments and treating employees as if they are expendable. I’m nervous to bring this up with him, because I don’t think he even realizes he does it, but I feel like there is a consistent pattern wherein he negates praise or recognition with a small but cutting comment.
When some people hear the word mindfulness, they immediately dismiss it as some esoteric Eastern meditation practice or New Age mumbo jumbo. However, mindfulness is an important ability to work on for coaches – or anyone else.
First, let me clarify what I mean by “mindfulness.” There are multiple views of what mindfulness is and is not, but in the most general sense, we can think of several levels of mindfulness, ranging from a basic level of awareness up through the sharp internal mental focus of a longtime meditator or yoga practitioner. For our purposes here, I am referring to a more open-minded awareness of others and of the environment itself, rather than awareness of one’s own internal processes and thoughts. Internal mindfulness is certainly a great topic, but it’s one for another day.