Executive Coaching

Half of all white-collar workers put in 50 or more hours per week in their job, according to a recent study. The more senior executive often works many more hours than the average.  In today’s fast-paced, 24/7, fiercely competitive business environment, more senior executives are working many more hours than their predecessors did but just a few years ago. Moreover, these same people are increasingly challenged to accomplish ever more with ever less. The Executive Coach role at Jack B. Keenan, Inc., is the most demanding one we play, and only our most senior partners with relevant business and industry experience serve our clients in this capacity.

What is Executive Coaching? Executive Coaching is the process of an independent expert helping another executive improve their performance and their fulfillment in their leadership role.

How does the Executive Coaching Process work? While there exists considerable room for variation in these engagements, most follow the general process outlined below:

  • Introductory Meeting. Before any substantive work begins, the Client and Coach meet over a meal outside the office to discuss the client’s needs, objectives, and preferences and to determine if there is a sufficient comfort level to continue to build the relationship.
  • Engagement Agreement. With an agreement to continue, the Client and Coach meet to discuss the details of the engagement. If there is a senior sponsor for this engagement, he or she attends this first substantive meeting. Measureable outcomes are identified, meeting frequency agreed to, and the engagement duration is clearly identified in a written document.

In this early phase of the engagement, confidentiality and progress reporting protocols are discussed and agreed to.  In general, we prefer to have the Client provide any progress reports to their internal sponsor, and the JBK Coach to communicate with the sponsor only in the presence of the Client, and again at the conclusion of the engagement.

  • Discovery Interviews. With the objectives of the engagement identified, the substantive work of the engagement begins. Depending upon the Client’s needs and the engagement objectives, the JBK Coach will conduct discovery conversations with the Client, with the Client’s peers and team members, and, if relevant, additional direct reporting relationships and others who can provide observations and insights relevant to the engagement.

When appropriate and relevant, these discovery conversations will be supplemented with instrumented profiles and other feedback tools.

  • Coaching Sessions. With the objectives of the engagement in hand and the relevant Discovery done, the on-going Coaching engagement begins.

These private and confidential conversations often take place outside of the office, and generally last 60 to 90 minutes per session, with a common monthly or bi-monthly frequency. When appropriate and relevant, these discovery conversations will be supplemented with instrumented profiles and other feedback tools. For more information, contact us directly for an introductory conversation.

Why should I consider an Executive Coach?

There are many reasons why executives choose to work with an executive coach.

  • A need and a willingness to grow. Executives seeking the services of an Executive Coach have a need and willingness to change and grow on a professional as well as personal level. These Executives understand that the ascent to the top does not come without personal growth. As an executive begins working on himself/herself, there is a steep learning curve involved – a learning curve in addition to the critical demands of the day to day. An Executive Coach can help speed up the process and help the executive achieve results more rapidly than they could on their own.
  • To become more responsive to their behaviors, their own skills, and their impact on others. Smart executives place a high priority on becoming self-aware and realize that self-knowledge can drive growth and improvement. At the executive level, such feedback is often difficult to obtain directly – direct reports, peers, and even superiors are often reluctant to risk their relationship giving such much-needed clear feedback directly. Executive Coaching uses direct feedback and reflective processes to increase the awareness of the executive, so that these experiences can accelerate change.
  • To face their mistakes directly, and learn from these experiences. Leaders and peak performing executives learn to view their inevitable mistakes in a positive light and to learn from them. An Executive Coach helps the executive better learn from their miscues to improve their performance.
  • To recognize and overcome their own obstacles to achieving their goals. Many executives are not aware of or may choose – consciously or unconsciously – to ignore their blind spots. This can be debilitating, and especially so for more senior executives with career ambitions and technical potential. This is a place Executive Coaching plays a crucial role. An Executive Coach understands how to constructively expose these areas of vulnerability so the executive is not only able to recognize and gain an awareness of the problem, but also take the necessary steps to eliminate the same.
  • To better balance the business and financial demands of the business with a people orientation and care for their own relationships. Executives are responsible for driving business results while maintaining productive relationships and developing people. This is typically not a simple nor easy balance to achieve. The difficult business decisions that directly impact people and relationships are on the daily agendas of most executives. Learning how to handle the emotional and physical stressors of the job is a challenge on one’s own. An Executive Coach can help accelerate this learning, reducing the potentially negative impact on the leadership.
  • To identify pertinent learning goals. It is critical that in order to be successful in today’s competitive business environment, leaders constantly sharpen the saw. Executive Coaching helps an executive effectively recognize and select key learning goals and objectives that benefit both them and their organizations.
  • To maintain a healthy work-life balance. In today’s highly competitive and stressful environment, it can be a real challenge to maintain a healthy life-work balance. Executive Coaching keeps the various facets of an executive in mind to help them maintain proper balance in all areas of their lives.
  • To develop a career and life game plan. Executive Coaching positions executives for success by helping them devise a strategic game plan for their careers.

For more information, contact us directly for an introductory conversation.