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The Power Of Positive Coaching

The Power of Positve Leadership

Executive leadership advisors Lee J. Colan and Julie Davis-Colan explain how positive coaching builds winning relationships and produces sustained growth and profits.

It wasn’t too long ago that having a business coach was like having a scarlet letter on your professional suit. Back then, most coaching was remedial—there was a problem that needed to be fixed. Today, having a coach has been elevated in status. Business leaders have realized what professional athletes have always known—having a coach produces better results. That’s a significant and necessary paradigm shift.

Research from the Korn Ferry Institute supports this paradigm shift in perceptions about coaching. The research found that most people rate “coaching and developing others” among the top three most important leadership competencies, according to 360-degree assessments. Although this competence is rated highly, it is consistently the least practiced competency worldwide.

If you neglect coaching to drive short-term results, you will handicap your team’s ability to sustain performance over time. Coaching your team is the ultimate pay-me-now or pay-me-later leadership proposition. Applying a consistent approach to coaching others is fundamental to leadership excellence today.

A commitment to coaching also signals an organization’s willingness to invest in its people. In today’s environment of high-velocity change, factors like technology, product innovation, and unique distribution channels are fleeting advantages. In fact, the only sustainable competitive advantage is an organization’s talent, and that talent delivers its product or service. The coaching value chain directly links a leader’s ability to coach his or her team with sustained growth and profitability:

                                                  Inspiring leaders coach teams to

                                                         Build winning relationships internally and externally and

                                                                     Generate winning results that

                                                                                  Produce sustained growth and profits.

Unfortunately, not every organization has the resources to hire external coaches. Therefore, it’s critical for business leaders to be equipped as effective and inspiring coaches to their teams.

 The Power of the Positive

We have all seen different types of coaches in action: the angry, red-faced coaches who yell at their teams for their failures; the disengaged, flat-line coaches who are physically present but not actively engaged in coaching; and the positive, exciting coaches who inspire their teams to strive for more despite the circumstances. Which type of coaching produces the best results?

The benefits of positive coaching carry “face validity,” meaning that even without research evidence, most people would agree that positive coaching generates real benefits (although there is abundant research to support the validity of positive coaching). People in general, regardless of generation or culture, respond better to positive interactions.

We do more for those who appreciate us and invest in us simply because it feels good. Since we are creatures of pleasure, we repeat the behavior that created that good feeling. This creates a self-perpetuating cycle of reinforced positive behavior and positive results. As we see too frequently, an equally powerful negative cycle can be created.

Positive coaching is not a soft approach. To the contrary, it leverages insights about human dynamics and performance to generate hard results. Positive coaching leads to:

  • More focused effort (and less wasted mental and physical energy) because you and your team are aligned on expectations.
  • More discretionary effort from your team because they are fully engaged.
  • More ownership behavior and innovation because your team is involved in creating solutions.
  • Greater accountability because your team knows their personal performance score.
  • Deeper commitment from team members because your team feels genuinely appreciated and valued.

The results are a more productive team, improved relationships, and sustained positive performance. The new Positive Mindset and Habits coaching model will help you inspire winning results and relationships:

Traditional Coaching Model vs. Positive Mindset and Habits Coaching Model

Reactively addresses poor performance  vs. Proactively facilitates good performance

Intervention-oriented vs. Prevention-oriented

Addresses weaknesses vs. Optimizes strengths

Seals compliance vs. Builds commitment

Scripted reactions by coach vs. Authentic responses by coach

Transactional focus vs. Relational focus

Programmatic vs. Cultural

Individual impact vs. Organizational impact

Purchase our book and access free tools at www.theLgroup.com.

Lee J. Colan, PhD is a high-energy executive advisor to leading companies, engaging presenter of practical ideas, and popular author. His 15 books have been translated into 10 languages, read and applied by leaders at virtually every Fortune 500 company and thousands of smaller organizations.

Lee J. Colan, PhD is a high-energy executive advisor to leading companies, engaging presenter of practical ideas, and popular author. His 15 books have been translated into 10 languages, read and applied by leaders at virtually every Fortune 500 company and thousands of smaller organizations.

Lee J. Colan, PhD is a high-energy executive advisor to leading companies, engaging presenter of practical ideas, and popular author. His 15 books have been translated into 10 languages, read and applied by leaders at virtually every Fortune 500 company and thousands of smaller organizations.


Julie Davis-Colan is an innovative business consultant and author of six books. She coaches and encourages positive behavior change to enable thriving organizations and individuals. Julie’s passion for leadership and life creates an infectious energy for clients and audiences


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