Tag Archive - Coaching

One Thing Great Coaches Like Coach K Do

Which one's the coach?

It was 1979 and I was sitting on a slab of concrete in the 90 degree heat at a summer basketball camp.  I was about to be in 8th grade and loved basketball.

I wanted to show the coach of the local college that I was willing to do anything to get better.  The coach was on the court demonstrating how we were supposed to play good man-to-man help defense.  He was sweating like I was, and I loved it.

Though he was young and in his first head coaching job, I thought he one of the greatest coaches alive. His name was Coach Mike Krzyzewski, and he wasn’t just modeling good defense.  He was modeling good coaching. Continue Reading…

I Can’t Lead Without Leaving My Office

You can't lead from here!

Is this scene familiar to you? The boss walks through the office and says “Good morning” to people before closing his door until lunch. He walks back through the office after lunch saying “Good afternoon” to people before closing his door until he leaves the building at the end of the day. “See you tomorrow!”, he says cheerfully.

It may seem like a scene from “The Office” or a Dilbert cartoon. But unfortunately when I speak or consult with companies, this is a common scenario. The major source of interaction people have with their boss is through electronic communications. This is not leading! Continue Reading…

The Five Best Times To Coach Your People

How are you doing coach?

If we are not developing our people, we should stop calling ourselves leaders! I don’t know why leaders ignore the coaching part of their jobs. But I work with so many organizations and hear the same story again and again.

“I never hear from my boss unless something is wrong.”

“I get feedback once a year at my performance review.”

“I am not sure what I need to do to earn a promotion.”

The fact is, coaching is a part of a leader’s job that is too often ignored. As leaders, we need to step up, do our jobs and develop our people!

Continue Reading…

Wanted: Coaches—Wimps Need Not Apply

Football coach

I was a wimp for three years.  I was a coach for twelve more after that.  Add it up and I spent fifteen years in sales leadership at a Fortune 50 company.  Not surprisingly, my success as a leader came in those final twelve years.  I realized, with the help of the people I was leading, that they wanted candor not coddling. Continue Reading…

The Three Checkpoints Before Firing Someone

Should They Stay or Go

“I will do everything I can to help you be as successful as you want to be…right up to the point I realize I am working harder at it than your are.”

I developed this point of view as a result of hanging on to employees for too long. I believe everyone I work with deserves my best. But at times, my desire to help them goes way beyond their desire to improve.

I always use three checkpoints before I make the final decision to fire someone. If these three criteria are met, it is best for everyone – my company, my team, the individual and myself – to fire them. Continue Reading…

What Happened To The Person I Hired?

The Slide To Mediocrity

It had been 12 months since I hired Tracy.  During the interview process she wowed me with her passion and drive to succeed.  I wasn’t just moderately hopeful for her.  I thought she would be doing my job some day!

But 12 months later, that person was nowhere to be found.  Tracy turned out to be very average – average work ethic, average skills, and average results.  She did her job and that was about it.  I rarely saw the passion and drive that made me hire her.  Continue Reading…

Performance Reviews Vs. Performance Reveals

Performance Review or Reveal?

A lot of people do not like performance reviews.  Many times it is the anticipation of bad news that can cause anxiety in the individual.  The fear of the unknown can overwhelm people.

That’s the problem.  Nothing that is discussed in a performance review should be unknown.

That is why they are called performance reviews – NOT performance reveals! Continue Reading…

The Often Ignored Key To Getting Promoted

The Key To Promotion

“I want to do your job someday Dave. Will you show me how to get there?”   I loved the ambition and drive Dorothy showed with that statement. But like others before her, she had no clue what the most critical thing she needed to accomplish was before she became promotable.

I had just offered her an advanced position that was one level below management.  She wanted to know about her next promotion. I asked her what steps she thought would make her a great candidate for the next level. Her answers were typical, and they were misguided. Continue Reading…

Being Good Sometimes – Is Not Good Enough

Don't Be Surprised

Should someone continue to pay me for doing part of my job? I have encountered people who think that doing a good job in parts of their work is enough to expect continued employment and in some cases promotions.

Here are some examples:

  • A nurse who is strong clinically, but consistently fails to correctly document things in patient charts.
  • A salesperson who knows his products and competitor products inside and out, but creates very few strong client relationships.
  • A middle manager who always gets reports in on time, but does not coach or develop individuals on her team.

Continue Reading…

When High Performance Is Not Enough

Who cares if he's good!

“He’s doing the job. In fact, he is meeting every performance goal we have for him. But….” It’s what comes after the “But” that can drive leaders crazy and cause sleepless nights.

Unfortunately, many leaders will put up with what comes after the “But” because the performance metrics are being met. It is a tough call for a leader to fire a high performer. It takes conviction and courage to make this decision. But, it is necessary. Continue Reading…

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