Coaching a senior manager to develop more productive work relationships
At Work Horizons, we provide coaching for organisations, teams, leaders and individuals. This case study is an example of an individual within an organisation who received our coaching services, specifically from executive coach and mentor, Diane Rance.
A senior manager in a national organisation wanted to take time to reflect on their work relationships and how it was impacting on them. They felt irritated, burdened by others and struggling to have the relationships they wanted in the workplace. The individual had a MBTI profile, and we used this as a starting point alongside exploring situations at work and how the client felt about them.
Some of the coaching approaches used
- The coach explored the individual’s self-limiting beliefs about the workplace and colleagues and challenged them before reframing. One of the challenges was “Do I know it to be true?” based around Nancy KIine’s Time to Think work
- The coach used a box of buttons of varying sizes, colours and shapes to map out key relationships – current and wished for – and to talk about how new patterns could be established. This was inspired by John Whittington’s work on Systemic Coaching and Constellations. The physical interaction with an issue can help to liberate the thinking of some clients.
- Considering language patterns and how they help us to influence, we spent time on developing a curious mindset, of asking open questions, checking understanding and identifying common ground. This built on the Tricky Conversations workshops that the coach has been running for a number of years
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey, including the idea of Circles of Concern and of Influence, and beginning with the end in mind
For the individual
The individual found that their coaching sessions had a very positive impact on them. They expressed feeling “unburdened”, “more settled” and “less irritated” as a result of the sessions. They also stated that they benefited greatly from the button exercise, as it made them realise that they are the source of influence, and that they should not absorb the stresses of others.
Two years later, the client resumed the coaching relationship, specifically asking to work with Diane. Their priorities were focusing on career plans and further developing workplace relationships.
For the organisation
The individual has chosen to stay with the organisation meaning that it not only retains significant experience at a senior level, it also saves the costs and business interruption of recruiting a replacement, which would have been many times the cost of the coaching.
The Director of the organisation recognised the benefits of the coaching to the organisation when they agreed to fund a second round of coaching.