Monthly Archives: July 2016

10 ways to improve your leadership skills

Top 10 leadership tips

There is no doubt that some people just have something about them which makes others listen, feel inspired and want to be part of whatever they are doing. But leadership is a skill that can be developed.

Defining ‘leadership skills’ is an almost an impossible task, as the skills and characteristics of one successful leader may be completely different to those of another. Working with leaders and followers from diverse industries, businesses, and in diverse locations has led us to identify 10 ways in which you can develop your leadership skills:

  1. Passion

The more authentically passionate you are, the more contagious that passion is. The person who feels inspired by something usually unable to stop their enthusiasm from bubbling out of them, and often it is purely that pleasure that others want to be part of. Let your passion expand and be free.

  1. Achieve

People who have accomplished something are admired. Obviously the level of achievement and difficulty in attaining it both factor into things, but people in general will be impressed by a human being who had the ability, discipline and drive to achieve something.

  1. Set goals

There is nothing more inspirational that someone who defines where they are going, and then take action to get there. Setting and attaining goals builds credibility and confidence, and it shows the world that you know where you want to go, what you want to do, and how you plan to do it.


  1. Communicate

Talk to people. Tell them about your goals and your passion. Let them know that you have ambition and are inspired to move forward. By talking others, you are not only sharing your ideas, you are gaining followers, collaborators and partners; people who can help you along your journey and make a journey for themselves.

  1. Tell

Often achievers expect others to know of their achievements, and more often than not, most of us have been brought up not to brag. There is a delicate balance between humility and self-defeating behaviour. People who tell others of their achievements, in a subtle and modest way, build their following on an ongoing basis.

  1. Focus on your strengths

There is a philosophy that says if you focus on your weaknesses, and never your strengths, you build a world of mediocrity for yourself. Your core focus should always be to do what you do well most of the time. Strengths build strengths, and great leaders focus on their strengths.

  1. Build your brand

We all have ways in which we do things, and mannerisms or accomplishments that others identify with us. Part of working with your strengths and building your credibility is knowing what people know about you, think of you, and how they see you. Use this information to further embed that image of yourself – this becomes your brand.

  1. Accept your failures

No one is good at everything and no one succeeds at everything. Leaders have the ability to lift themselves back up after setbacks. Some of the greatest leaders, such as Abraham Lincoln, led lives of numerous failures until the final break, which led them onto the path to success. Failures are inevitable, but they don’t need to define you.

  1. Build up others

One of the most defining characteristics of leaders is that they continually grow and develop others. For some, there is joy in developing another person, or in sharing knowledge. Yet for leaders, the more they build up others and share their knowledge, the more successful they themselves seem to be. Great leaders proactively grow and develop other people.

  1. Celebrate success

All too often we spend our life chasing the next objective, putting out the next fire, trying to fit something else in. Leaders stop after they’ve achieved something meaningful and then they celebrate. They reward themselves and acknowledge their own milestones. For a leader, the path is as important as the final destination. Enjoying the road to success as part of the success.

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”

John Quincey Adams

Need help developing your leadership skills?  Speak to a business coach today!  Your first session is free.

Deep Listening


Deep Listening

A client speaking to his Rogerian therapist says: “I’m so depressed, I just don’t feel like is worth living.”

The therapist replies: “I hear you saying that you’re in pain and that you’re not sure how you will ever feel better.”

The client replies by saying: “I really feel I would be better off dead.”

To which the therapist comments: “You really are at your wits’ end about what to do.”

The client stands and moves to the window of the office and opening it up, the therapist observes, “You’re showing me how much pain you are in, how desperate you are.”

The client then jumps out the window

The therapist says, “Splat” (Rosenbaum, 2009).

The point of the above story is that reflective listening serves no purpose. It is parroting what someone has said, and simply repeating back to someone what they have said is pointless.

Deep listening takes a different perspective on listening. It adds empathy to the equation. Empathetic, deep listening happens when the listener silences their own internal chatter and own opinions, and completely stills their mind so that they can absorb everything that the person in front of them is saying.

The principle behind deep listening is that the person listening listens absolutely. They are completely present in the moment, they take in everything about the person in front of them in terms of their body language, facial expressions, voice intonation and use of language. They integrate everything that they witness to build a sincere trust with the communicator, so that the person speaking feels no judgment, and that the speaker feels like they have the listener’s undivided attention.

Deep listening is a practiced skill that takes years to perfect. Once it is perfected, it is an art, and a skilled practitioner can slip into deep listening easily.

“We think we listen, but very rarely do we listen with real understanding, true empathy. Yet listening, of this very special kind, is one of the most potent forces for change that I know.”

Carl Rogers

Crisis Management or Business Coach?

Business Coach Vs Crisis Management

You know what prevents having to deal with crisis management? Going for business coaching.

There’s an amazing advantage to dealing with crisis management and working with experienced professionals who thrive in that sphere. In fact, they are a godsend when you or your business are in crisis – they take the impending doom and create a series of steps to establish calm normality.

The first in that series of steps is usually: Create a plan.
The critical question is this: when does your business need crisis management. What defines a crisis? And how big does that crisis need to be in order for you to seek some form of crisis management?
For a business – almost regardless of size – that cannot get new business, this constitutes a crisis. It doesn’t require media management and a spokesperson to address the public. But the business is in crisis.
The astute business owner has a series of tools to use to ensure that the business does not descend into crisis. One of those tools should be a business coach.
The ease with which business people will contact and employ a crisis management expert – and pay a fortune – is astounding, particularly when the whole crisis situation can be averted through effective business coaching.
Business coaching and crisis management are mutually exclusive, as the effective use of one usually eliminates the use of the other.

Get help for your business today.  Speak to a business coach.

Business Coach Or HR?

Business Coach or Human Resources?

Business is a series of processes implemented by people to achieve specific strategic objectives. Without people the systems cannot be put into effect, and without the processes the people will have no direction or beat practice.

This delicate balance of equal value is one of the cornerstones of a business coach’s toolkit. ‘Business knowledge’ is a broad and never ending subject with endless challenges, opportunities and curveballs.

The professional business coach not only knows this; he or she works with this to achieve outcomes.

Human Resources (or HR) as a department, is a critical component within the business structure. It is this department that ensures the right people are in the right positions in order to achieve the business strategy. Human Resources is a proactive function that deliberately strives to optimise processes by placing, motivating and developing effective people.

This is not a business coaching function. Although admittedly many HR people are great listeners and seem to have an insight into people, their focus, training and purpose differs significantly from that of a business coach.

HR specialises in one aspect of business, and although it is a vital aspect, it is highly specialised.

Business coaches specialise in coaching people in their businesses.  From systems to processes; from recruitment to talent management; from strategy to objectives.

This competency embodies a range of business oriented specialisations and allows the client to focus on the one that matters most at that time.

HR is incredibly valuable, and so is business coaching.

The important point to realise is that the two are not mutually exclusive. Business coaches can work with and add value to the HR department and visa versa. However, they are not substitutes for each other.

Each plays its own meaningful role and achieves its meaningful outcomes in its own way. And each has its own value to add.