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3 Top Mistakes Executives Make And How A Business Coach Can Help

One thing that your executive and small business coach knows for sure is that most executive mistakes and foibles are not unique — in fact they are very common. This is good news because it means you’re not flawed, you’re just dealing with the same issues that all CEOs, executives and managers are dealing with and that your business coach can help! Here are 3 top mistakes that executives make and how a business coach can take your performance to the next level.

Mistake #1: Continuing To Rely On Your Past Strengths

In the book What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful, Marshall Goldsmith explains how the strengths that made you successful at the previous stage of your career, likely won’t be what will make you successful at the next stage of your career. For example, you might have been a rock-star employee that is known for coming up with all sorts of new and exciting ideas — some of which turned out to be good ideas. And because of your ingenuity you got promoted to a management position where you continue to come up with new and exciting ideas, as that’s what you’re good at and what got you the promotion. However, as a manager being an “idea generator” might not be the quality needed for success at that level. As a manager, being an “idea generator” might cause issues with your team as they could feel overwhelmed with all your ideas or they could feel that you don’t provide them with the opportunity to generates. You might also be also be missing other management issues that should be your focus such as resolving interpersonal issues on your team, securing needed resources for your department, or improving interdepartmental relationships — because you’re focusing too much on what you used to do. Thus, you need to develop and employ a completely different set of skills every time you “level-up”.


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How A Business Coach Can Help: A business coach can provide you with new tools and strategies that will help you develop the skills needed to be successful at each stage of your career or business success.

Mistake #2: You Stop Creating the Next Level

Early in your career or business there are lots of opportunities to advance and the path to this progression is clear.  However, as your career or your business advances you will likely land in a position where the next level isn’t as obvious or as readily available — you might be a director, VP, or CEO for a long time before you “level-up” again. Having the same position for the long-term often creates stagnation in personal growth and learning and slows down our “opportunity radar” in this position. Just because the position per say doesn’t change, doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be looking to level-up in that position — this is a very common problem for CEOs and senior managers.

How A Business Coach Can Help: A business coach can help you keep pushing, growing and transforming your current position so that you’re better prepared for the next step and so that the people under you can continue to expand as you do.

Mistake #3: Stop Getting Feedback

Early in your career or business feedback is inevitable — you get it whether you solicit it or not. And in the beginning you often seek it as you’re hungry to find out where there’s gaps in your performance so that you can improve and get better results — after all you have nothing to lose! However, as you become more successful in your career or business the feedback lessens usually because there are less people to give it to you (you’re close to the top of the “food chain”) and your amphibian brain kicks in, creating that you now have something to lose (ego, pride, strength, security) so you inadvertently stop seeking feedback. Feedback is key not only to continually improving performance, but it is also a key part of power and influence. Leaders that continue to seek and accept feedback are more trusted, more skilled, more respected and thus more powerful and influential.

How A Business Coach Can Help: A business coach can help by being an unfiltered, unconstrained, objective source of feedback so you can create bigger and better results and continue to grow your authentic power and influence.  Furthermore, a business coach helps you be accountable to that feedback once you get it.

Contact me for a free consultation — ninja style!