What Does a Coach Do?

What does a coach do? And what does that have to do with Awesome Leader? 

When someone sends me an email and says, “I’m looking for an executive coach,” I do three things:

  • Ask them to watch this 6-minute video about how I coach—and why,
  • Send them a 4-page PDF that speaks to my coaching process, which includes how clients describe me (tough love, high touch, annoyingly intuitive, no bs, friendly, fun, and frustrating are examples), and
  • Meet with them.

The #1 reason people reach out and say, “I want a coach,” is to make their lives easier as leaders. They’re looking for answers to tough questions. They need support in their new roles. And they want accountability. Ultimately, they want to lead with ease and become an awesome manager.

Of course, they don’t say that to me. They say other things. Like . . .

  • I’ve been promoted, and now my team is much bigger, and the company expects a lot more from me.
  • I have a struggling exec team, and I need to understand how to make them get along and stop the bs.
  • I’m a founder, and we just got funded, and I don’t want to mess this up.
  • I need to figure out how to make it more natural for me to do the stuff I hate to do.
  • My friend has a coach and says I need one.
  • The HR leader told me most execs at my level have a coach.

In one way or another, all those things point to what I said above: make their lives easier as leaders.

It’s not easy to be a leader. 

Yet it can be easier. And it can be even easier with a coach. 

What I do most of the time is:

  • Listen
  • React
  • Write
  • Nudge
  • Remind, and
  • Cheer (ugh, sorry, but it’s the truth, and it’s often a “HELL YEAH!” reaction to a client’s success vs. “Yeah, go, so-and-so! I know you can do it!”).

Put another way, I see myself as a trusted adviser who can call people on their BS, hold them accountable, respond, validate questions, and do all these things with a different type of judgment. 

And while it may sound like it, it’s not judgment. It’s evaluation. 

I sit back and evaluate the actions that are getting them closer to their goals and those that are taking them farther away from their goals. 

Although, that level of accountability is sometimes one people aren’t prepared to have. 

But here’s the thing: my job is to figure out—as fast as possible—what you do well and what you need to change (ASAP). And to make it as easy as possible for you to get there while I’m at it.

If you’ve worked 1:1 with an executive coach, you know you get someone who is “in your business.” In your business as a leader, a functional head, a founder, and a person. Your coach needs to learn about you: a lot about you. 

Since I have a background in teaching (community college English instructor), technical writing (at a brokerage in the TransAmerica pyramid–those “wings” on the building are elevator shafts, BTW), technical training (Web 1.0 days), and corporate training (ditto), I do a lot of putting together the bare essentials on what people need to do and say. 

I pick the most important and actionable things to say and do–and get that info to my clients ASAP.

So, they might get an email that says, “OK, here are five things to consider. Read this, text/call me, and let’s role play for a few minutes.”

They’re smart, and they love to learn, but guess what? 

The CFO, founder, or VP of a Fortune 500 company can’t take time right now to read a book about EQ, read three articles about the best way to address squabbles between peers, or spend an afternoon creating a plan to manage up as an executive. 

Of course, they may want to do that. Actually, I know they want to learn about those things (and so much more). And they know they need to.

But they don’t have the time. Or, they have the time after the opportunity to use that info (tomorrow!) has passed. 

So, opportunity gone.

That’s one reason an executive coach like me plays such a critical role. When my founder or CEO needs me, I’m there. 

I’m like a personal leadership trainer in addition to a coach.

Even though my coaching clients might have big titles, their challenges are consistent with smaller titles. They’re struggling with things like:

  • The #1 word to avoid when giving feedback (it’s “but”). 
  • How to get things off your plate and delegate. 
  • How self-awareness and self-management make you a more authentic and passionate leader. 
  • How to tell someone they’re not getting that promotion.

There are many leaders out there who need and want help. But I realize that not everyone can work 1:1 with a coach.

That’s where Awesome Manager comes in. 

When I started building AwesomeLeader.com in 2018, I’d been running my executive coaching business for 10 years. 

And for the last five of those ten years, clients had been asking for bite-sized content.

They wanted help. They wanted coaching in a small environment. And they wanted expert advice.

So that’s what I created.

The Awesome Manager program is six weeks of lessons and coaching.

  • The lessons are bite-sized. All of them are under 15 minutes long. Check out a lesson here.  ▶️
  • Decks, transcripts, cheat sheets, and exercises are ready to download and reference anytime. ????
  • The content is written and hosted by a leadership expert who coaches Fortune 500 C-suite leaders (that’s me). ????

And the content is paired with coaching, which is the best part. Once a week, I meet with groups of 15-25 leaders in company cohorts.

The participants learn together, brainstorm, and hold each accountable. When it comes down to it, they coach each other.

And while they do that, I play my roles:

  • Listen
  • React
  • Write
  • Nudge
  • Remind, and
  • Cheer (again, not corny or “ rah-rah”)

With Awesome Manager, your teams are never alone. They learn with a coach at their side.

Not only does it make your life as a leader easier, but it also makes the lives of leaders you manage easier too.

And this September, the program will be open for you to enroll people one at a time, which has never been available before!

So whether you’re working with me, 1:1, or I’m your coach in a cohort of you and your peers–as part of the Awesome Manager program–I’m your coach.

I listen. I react. I nudge. I remind. Those are the roles that I play. 

I will be there with you along the way to becoming an awesome leader.

P.S. Add your name to the interest form for the September launch. I’ll start sharing sample lessons next week