Blog

Weekend Love, July Twenty-Fifth

employee complaintsHere are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

If you want to find out what others think about you, then you’ll have to find a way to ask them.  Lou Solomon reports on a Harris poll about The Top Complaints from Employees About Their Leaders.  Most of them even fit direct sellers and other entrepreneurs using independent contractors.

Want to know the best way to not look dumb?  Ask Questions.  Dan Rockwell gives you some great examples and he explores the topic, What If You’re Not That Smart?

When’s the last time you did a simple SWOT analysis of your business.  As you prepare to move into the Fall season, maybe you should think about one.  Dan McCarty gives you the basics in his article, How to Conduct a SWOT Analysis.

I absolutely hate text messages.  It’s great to find out I’m not alone.  Michael Hyatt agree when he writes about 3 Reasons I Hate Text Messages.

For the next couple of weeks I’ll be on a wilderness retreat that is completely off the digital grid.  Some might say I’ve simply gone fishin.’  In any case, I’ll  catch up with you the week of August 11.

 

Read More

Want to Add Coaching to Your Skill Set?

The next three-day intensive coaching launch is September 15-17, 2015 in Grapevine, Texas near the DFW Airport.

The easiest way to know what happens is to listen to three of our student describe the three days.

Whether your interest is in adding coaching skills to your leadership, taking your life in a new direction, or becoming a professional coach, this three-day dive into key topics will get you started as a coach. You’ll leave prepared to start coaching immediately.

This program is geared for coaches beginning their professional career and for those simply wanting to add coaching skills to their toolkit. Experienced coaches participate to refresh their knowledge base and to hone their skills. The program is approved for 16 hours of Continuing Coach Education Units (CCEU’s) with the International Coach Federation.

The program provides coaches with knowledge, skills, practice, and feedback on their coaching. The course will address specifics for running programs in person and virtually.

Participants leave the program with tools, resources, skills and practice in coaching, including:

  • An understanding of what coaching is, similarities and differences with counseling, training, mentoring, and facilitation
  • Core skills and competencies for masterful group coaching
  • Foundational principles: Learning styles, listening, asking curious powerful questions, and feedback
  • Creating Connection, Trust and Accountability
  • Exercises, Tools and Resources for Coaching
  • Working with, and engaging, different learning styles
  • Navigating Tricky Issues
  • Practice and feedback on your skills

The program includes:

  • 16 hours of training ( 15 Core Competency CCEU’s)
  • Online DiSC profile to assess your communication style
  • Experience as a coach and as a client (your first three sessions)
  • Your UCU Resource Workbook
  • Online Time Mastery profile and self-coaching application
  • Your copy of Coaching for Performance by Sir John Whitmore.
  • Your copy of The Power of TED* *The Empowerment Dynamic by David Emerald
  • New Client Welcome Forms
  • Sample Coaching Agreements
  • Small student/faculty ratio for personal attention
  • Student rates on coaching tools
  • An opportunity for you to get hands-on practice and feedback on your coaching skills

Venue: The host hotel is the SpringHill Suites, Dallas DFW Airport North/Grapevine, 2240 W. Grapevine Mills Circle Grapevine, TX 76051.  You can use this link to receive our special rate of $119 per night.

Space limited to 15 coaches.

Cost: $1250 (payable in four installments). Register with one or more colleagues and save 10% each.

Here’s what past participants have said about the program:

“This is the place to learn the skills needed for coaching.” – Diane Dieffenbach

“Completely changed my mindset on the way I view people and life.  I am a better person now.” – Megan Salmon

“DO IT!  Sooner than later ” – Darla Oehlman

“A must to take.” – Diane Engle

For more details on-line, look for the Ultimate Coach University program descriptions. We are the only ICF ACSTH program that has an emphasis in direct selling.

Contact Dana Phillips, dana@ultimatecoachuniversity.com, with questions.

Looking forward to having you join us!

Read More

The Art of Coaching

What is happiness questionHow do you explain passion?  How do you know with every core of your being that something is perfect or impossible?  The answer lies in what Michael Polanyi calls “The Tacit Dimension.”  Tacit knowledge is what we know that we would struggle to say.

Think about young Tim, a teenager just coming to grip with the concept of “love.” I can picture this 13-year-old boy coming to his father and saying, “I really love Betty.”  Dad, after calming down, would ask “What makes you think you’re in love?”  Tim has some ideas, but can’t come close to telling the whole story.

Tim’s problem is the one we all have.  We know more than we can say.  This is why we can recognize a face but not describe it.  It’s those hunches that gamblers play.  It’s those brass rings that let us say things we don’t even remember knowing but they fit the conversation perfectly.

Coaches get a lot of business because of this fundamental human characteristic.  Good coaches ask question to let you say what you know.  Great coaches ask questions to support you in digging deeper into what you know but haven’t said.

Michael Polyani, a scientific theorist, refers to this aspect of human knowledge as “the tacit dimension.”  We know more than we can tell.  And the more we tell, the more we know exists behind those statements.

Interestingly, we can’t get at our tacit knowledge by being told.  We only recognize that deeper knowledge when asked about it.

That’s why coaches matter.  They can ask the questions.  They are curious.  They take what you say and ask for what’s behind it.  Coaches have great metaphors to describe this:

  • Peeling back the layers
  • Unpacking this box
  • Digging deeper

The ability to do this well is not an easy skill.  It takes thought and training.  Learning the science of coaching helps, but understanding the right question at the right time is really about the art of coaching.  (And even great coaches can’t tell you everything about how they do it.)  How can you learn:

Engage with a mentor coach.  Your mentor can help you take apart a coaching sequence so you push your understanding deeper.

Practice mindfulness.  Think more about your second question than your first.  Take time to ask a question that pushes into the tacit dimension.

Get training.  Coach training gives you the opportunity to appreciate the art of coaching.  Investigate possible coach training programs and find one that seems to resonate with you.  Your tacit knowledge will help you find the right one if you listen to it.

 

Read More

Weekend Love, July Eleventh

Breaking through the barrier of personal limitationsHere are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

Feel guilty saying, “no?”  Frank Sonnenberg helps you understand the trade-offs you are creating when you say, “yes” in his article, Say Yes to No.

When I first started to understand strengths, I realized that others couldn’t do what I see as natural and vice-versa.  Dan Rockwell peels back one more layer of insight into this perspective when he writes about The Power of Awkward.

Jane C. Woods has a singular focus—women thriving at work.  As she writes, “Women duet, men duel.”  She shares more of her very credible insights when she writes about How to Talk to the Opposite Sex!

Who doesn’t love Seth Godin?  Normally his daily blog is one of the quickest reads available.  Sometimes it’s not.  Reading Seth Godin is always worth your time, especially when he writes about The tragedy of small expectations (and the trap of false dreams).

From the archives:  Executive coach, Ed Batista, who also teaches at Stanford, has a one-hour webinar on Making Feedback less Stressful.  He also answers numerous questions.  If you put it with his article Make Feedback Less Stressful, I think you have at your fingertips just about everything you need to know of feedback.  Now to just do this stuff in the key moments.

 

Read More

Free Will

Viktor Frankl, Free Will

A human being is not one thing among others; things determine each other, but man is ultimately self-determining.  What he becomes—within the limits of endowment and environment—he has made out of himself.

~Viktor Frankl

Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.

~Viktor Frankl

Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.

~Viktor Frankl

Viktor Frankl was not an American.  He was a survivor of the holocaust.  His book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is considered by the Library of Congress as one of the ten most influential books in America.  He understood independence and freedom.

When we talk about “unalienable rights” we are speaking of our right to choose.

Whether high born or low we have this right.

Regardless of color or sex or creed, we have this right.

We may not be able to choose our circumstances, but we can choose how we will react to them.

Happy Independence Day!

Read More

Weekend Love, June Twenty-Seventh

iStock_000001746407Here are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

Here’s an interesting survey result from Gallup:  89% of employers believe that workers leave their company for more money. However, as it turns out, only a mere 12% of people actually do leave for that reason.  Carly Sec provides some key insights on employee motivation in 3 Simple Ways to Inspire Employee Motivation [Infographic].

As a coach, it’s sometimes difficult for people to understand what I do.  Their thoughts range from mentoring to therapy and it’s hard to convince them that these are not coaching.  Madeline Blanchard weighs in on this topic in her short article, What Coaching Really Is.

I go on my annual fishing trip in a month.  Michael Hyatt thinks I need to do more.  Who am I to disagree?  Read 9 Reasons You Need More Fishing In Your Life.

Before you take your summer vacation, you might want to spend an hour following Karyn Greenstreet’s advice on 7 Steps to Create Your Autumn Marketing Plan This Summer.

Just for grins:  Scientists aren’t quite sure why, but Laughing Helps You Learn, Babies (and Scientists) Say.  Can I at least get a smile over the opening line?

Read More

Weekend Love, June Twentieth

DiSC MapHere are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

Ever wonder how to sell to different DiSC styles?  Leslie Ye of Hubspot Marketing provides some core insights when she writes about How to Sell to 4 Different Personality Types.

If you are ever in a position where you have to rationalize a summer vacation, Fiona Moriarty provides you with five solid ideas when she writes about Five Reasons Why Smart Leaders Take Vacation.

For me, Naomi Dunford produces incredible insights when she writes.  This article about the difference between truth and the PR truths we tell ourselves is tough to ignore.  Understanding this may be The Greatest Leap Your Business Will Ever Take.

Not too long ago I wrote a blog about what you might say in a commencement address to a younger you.  Tiffany Sauder had a similar idea when she wrote Advice to My 24-Year-Old Self: 8 Career Lessons I Learned the Hard Way.  It’s solid advice.  In fact, it still fits me.

Read More

The Myth of Multitasking

Multitasking phonecallsWith the summer rush coming on, we all have a tendency to look for shortcuts.  You want to be outside as much as your neighbors and all of the children you see walking past.  One shortcut you might end up trying is to multitask.  While you may think that multitasking will help you get more done, that’s a myth.

Unconsciously, you can multitask.  That’s why you can walk and chew gum at the same time.  BUT if you try and think about doing both, you’ll fall down.  Consciously, you don’t do two things at once.  Your mind flips back and forth between the two.  A recent University of London study found that IQ drops by about 15 points when you try to email or text while performing other activities.

Imagine what you take away from those important meetings!  The solution is pretty simple:  Stop multitasking.  The video provides a couple of specific ideas.

Click here if the video isn’t showing.

Whatever you do, don’t drive and try to read your email or texts at the same time.  Besides being illegal in most locations, the loss of IQ may be deadly.

Read More

Learning Coaching from a 3-Year Old

fully present

As a coach, I consciously work to stay “present” when meeting with my clients.  After all, they want my time and attention and I want to make sure that I am fully there and stay there. Like most adults, I think I am a work in progress on this.  I think there is too much going on in my life to fully commit to one person at any given time.

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to see my 3-year old grandson in action.  He is the living definition of “being present.”  Several family members and I attended a wedding in western Illinois.  My grandson was all-in on everything.

  • At a lake? Want to go swimming?
  • My uncle brought his girlfriend. Will you read to me?
  • Flight cancelled? Do we get to stay in a hotel?
  • Chicago? Let’s have deep dish pizza (He didn’t say this, but he whole-heartedly approved).

The point is that he was not concerned with being right or leaving the correct impression.  He wasn’t bothered by delayed flights or lost opportunities.  He was participating full-out.

One of the International Coaching Federation core competencies is “Coaching Presence—Ability to be fully conscious and create spontaneous relationship with the client, employing a style that is open, flexible and confident.”  They go on to describe this with phrases like dancing in the moment, going from your gut, and choosing in the moment.  That is my grandson in action.  This is also a central piece of what coaches strive to accomplish.

I think we do this when we want to have a completely open and honest dialogue with another person.  Carl Rogers describes this by saying “To be with another in this way means that for the time being you lay aside the views and values you hold for yourself in order to enter another’s world without prejudice.”

So the next time you start to get caught in your stuff, think of my grandson, the people you are with, and go dancing in the moment.

Read More

Weekend Love, June Thirteenth

iStock_000029910540Here are some of the great nuggets that I’ve found on the web recently. This handful of links takes you to tools or insightful content. Occasionally I’ll include one from my “save” file if it fits the mood.

Meetings got you down?  You are not alone.  Ray Williams shares some ideas on avoiding meeting and/or making them more productive when he talks about How Mindfulness Can Make Your Meetings More Productive.

Who among you doesn’t hear a customer say, “I’ll think about it” and then tell yourself it’s a done deal?  Emma Snider of HubSpot has some on point insights about what customers are really saying when she writes about The Sh*t Buyers Say, Translated [Comic].

We often think that if we just focus on our strengths, then our leadership will improve.  Dan McCarthy thinks we can sometimes have too much of a good thing when he writes about how Leadership Strengths Can Turn into Weaknesses.

I’ve long believed in the benefits of understanding other’s DiSC styles.  I was ecstatic to see I was in agreement with Dr. Tony Allessandra.  He recently wrote about Diversity through DISC Styles Adaptability.  You might want to hold onto this one so you can read it again.

Read More