Joel Garfinkle

Has your team ever thought about employing a professional leadership coach? It may be worth it. After all, anything that elevates your team elevates your business. But how do you measure the success of an Executive Leadership Program once you’ve gone through it? Recently, John Mattone spoke with Joel Garfinkle, President of Garfinkle Executive Coaching, to find out just that.

How do you measure the success of executive leadership programs?

  1. I look at improved performance. Take a look at your current standards. Where do you want to see your workers’ performance improve? From your most basic employee to your highest executive, coaching can make that difference. A coach helps you set assessment benchmarks that clearly measure the effects of your coaching program. Your program will develop the leaders you need to fill your succession program. They will gain essential skills and increase personal performance.
  2. I look at increased productivity. A coach’s value is determined by how well their coaching improves company output. As coaching helps executives implement leadership techniques, you should see more productivity.
  3. I look at enhanced talents. Business may stall if executives only do what’s been done before. Companies expand with outside-the-box vision, so they need an infusion of ideas and creativity. Coaching helps leaders think differently.

What steps do you take when working with leadership teams?

  1. Set clear expectations. Are you trying to establish an environment where everyone feels like part of a big team working together toward a common goal, or are you trying to establish a smaller group to work on a specific project? Knowing where you are headed will help you get there with fewer headaches and setbacks.
  2. Share your knowledge. If someone has a problem that you can help with, speak up. By sharing your expertise, you not only save the person time and the trouble of searching for a solution, but you also earn their respect and trust. On the flip side, ask for their advice and be willing to listen to their ideas.
  3. Say good things about other people. It makes people feel good to hear that you’re praising them behind their backs. Too often, the only things people say when they’re not present are negative. Turn that around to show your team that you’re truly on their side and supporting their efforts.
  4. Encourage collaboration. Encourage employees to form smaller teams for a specific project, task, or goal. Working together on projects is a great way for people to get to know each other better.
  5. Ask questions. When you ask questions, the person you’re talking to feels like you’re really interested in what they have to say – which makes your relationship stronger.

How do you ensure positive changes remain after you’re gone? Is it entirely up to the team leaders, or do you check in to make sure things are running as planned?

I always follow up with team leaders after completing our program to make sure the objectives are being achieved. I also create a mini-program for team leaders that creates accountability partners, continues the group dialogue, and discusses follow-up and accountability with managers.

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