Stakeholder Leadership Coaching
Stakeholder leadership coaching helps successful leaders achieve positive and measurable change in leadership behaviour AND improve their brand and reputation. When combined with stakeholder team coaching, it can be a highly effective way to create a positive change in company culture.
In this article we consider the stakeholder coaching process and some of the key principles to consider when running the process.
(We now include stakeholder leadership coaching as optional part of our NLP Coach Practitioner Programme. Please note this is our own cut-down version of the full MGSCC coaching programme.)
Steps in the Stakeholder Leadership Coaching Process
- Introduction to process and coachability.
- Agreeing stakeholders, holding initial stakeholder behavioural interviews. Additional assessments.
- Determining leadership growth areas.
- Stakeholder briefing.
- Monthly or bi-monthly stakeholder feedback and feedforward.
- Leadership growth process review.
- Leader as a coach.
Introduction to process and coachability
As well as introducing the process, this stage is about checking that the leader will get significant value from the programme. The leader is likely to be coach-able if:
- They are prepared to demonstrate ambition, courage, discipline and honesty throughout the programme.
- They are committed to change and will commit time and emotional energy to the programme.
- They have the right background, direction, and purpose, have not been ‘written off’ by their stakeholders, and don’t have any serious ethical issues.
Agreeing stakeholders, holding initial stakeholder behavioural interviews. Additional assessments
The leader agrees the stakeholders and gets buy in for the initial behavioural interviews.
The best stakeholders are a mix of three criteria:
- They are critical to the leader’s success.
- They are friendly critics.
- They see the leader in action.
To involve the chosen stakeholders the leader might ask a version of “You’re someone I respect. I’m undergoing a 6/12/18 month programme to develop my leadership skills, to help myself, the people I work with and the ompany. Initially, would you give me some feedback and feedforward? It will take no more than 15 minutes. If I ask you take part in the next stage your investment will be no more than 15 minutes a month (or every two months) for the duration of the programme. Does that work for you?“
When asking for behavioural feedback (by the coach or the leader) ask
- What are the leaders strengths?
- What do they enjoy doing?
- What are the 1-2 areas that if they improved, would have the biggest positive impact?
- What could they stop doing?
All suggestions will be considered, however the leader will prioritise the top 1 or 2.
We use Marshall Goldsmith’s Global Leadership Assessment and ICQ’s cultural psychometric as additional assessments.
Determining leadership growth areas
The coach will facilitate the leader choosing 1-2 development areas to work on during the remainder of the programme, considering all the available information.
The stakeholders can be briefed individually or as a group. A short briefing might be: ” I very much appreciate your help. Please let go of the past, evaluate me from this stage forward on my leadership development; provide 2-3 positive suggestions monthly; and provide honest feedback on how I’m doing. You may also like to choose to improve something your self.“
Before meeting the stakeholders each period, it’s normally best to drop them an email at least 2 days in advance, giving them advanced notice on what you’ll ask.
Monthly or bi-monthly stakeholder feedback and feedforward
At the point above, you may want to send an email: I will be meeting you in the next 2 days and I will be asking “What 1-2 changes can I make in my relationship with you to improve my effectiveness in relation to my (agreed growth areas). How am I doing so far?”
Leadership growth process review
As part of the process, we recommend asking stakeholders for confidential feedback, by a simple confidential survey, as to whether the individual stakeholders have noticed an improvement or not. In the full MGSCC process, the coach will only get paid if, as part of the survey, the stakeholders confirm that the leader has made a positive change in the agreed areas.
Leader as a coach
At the end of the programme, the best leaders will have established their own capability to continually seek feedback and feedforward from their stakeholders on an ongoing basis.
This is likely to have a dramatic and positive impact on their future career.
Key Principles in Stakeholder Leadership Coaching
Principles that acccelerate change
- Emphasise feedforward. Focus on suggestions for the future.
- Strengthen do’s and reduce don’ts. Successful leaders do both.
- Encourage leaders to ask to be coached by their stakeholders.
- Leaders need to change behaviours and perception. A behaviour change on its own has limited impact.
7 Step Process
- Follow Up
Always split information gathering from decision making. Always remember to thank stakeholders for their suggestions. The coach has an important role in helping facilitate the leader through the process.
We offer stakeholder coaching as part of our NLP Coach Practitioner Programme.