Boston Centerless - Precision Matters Magazine Precision Matters Magazine Spring 2018 - Page 15

increase their capacity and potential , asking a good question will do it . 2 . You help yourself One of the Box of Crayons coaching principles is Be Lazy . Which always makes people in the audience twitch when they hear it . Because , like you , they ’ re hardworking , ambitious and driven . Being lazy is anathema to their DNA . But here ’ s what happens when your ambition leads you to be the advice giver , solution provider and answer finder for those around you . First , you create an overly dependent team , a team that comes to you at first for a few things and then eventually for everything , because you ’ ve trained them to do just that . This is not a motivated and engaged team ; this is a codependent team .
Second , since you ’ re now doing the team ’ s work as well as your own , you feel the cold waters of overwhelm lapping at your feet . You ’ re overcommitted and stretched thin . And because you ’ re now focused on just trying to get it all done , trying to do what Cal Newport calls deep work is impossible . You lose that sense of connection to the meaningful work , Pink ’ s “ purpose ” work , your Great Work .
Asking a good question is a self-management tool to stop you from leaping into action . If you ’ re asking , you ’ re not doing . In short , getting good at regularly asking powerful questions will let you work less hard and have more impact . A New Hope : Three Counterintuitive Principles Now , let ’ s be clear here : I ’ m not trying to turn you into A Coach . There are enough of those already in the life-coaching and executive-coaching fields . I do want you to be more coach-like as you lead . That ’ s something that can be done by everyone , and in a way that will have a significant impact on performance and satisfaction .
But to make it work for the busy and skeptical manager like you , you ’ ll need to follow three principles that break the current rules :
1 . Keep coaching to 10 minutes or less . If you can ’ t , you don ’ t have time for coaching .
2 . Keep it simple . You don ’ t need a psych degree or to understand fancy coaching models . Seven good questions and the discipline to make asking them a habit is all you need .
3 . Strive for drip irrigation ( not the occasional flash flood ). Make coaching a regular act by transforming the interactions you have , rather than adding more to your workload . Here is how to put these principles into action . 1 . Notice your default response A recent survey by Harvard Business Review asked people to self-identify what style of leader they are from eight possible choices . The top pick at 23 percent was Collaborator — described as “ empathetic , team-building , talent-spotting , coaching-oriented .”
I think they ’ re delusional .
I ’ d observe that most managers are terrible at being coaching-oriented , at being curious . Just as doctors ( a study found ) wait only about 18 seconds before interrupting their patients , most managers move into advice-giving , solutionprompting , and answer-offering mode almost instantly .
When you ’ re in a conversation , notice how quickly you trade curiosity for giving advice . You ’ ll be shocked at how quickly it happens . 2 . Pick a question In my book , The Coaching Habit , I offer up the seven essential questions all managers and leaders should have in their repertoire . I ’ d suggest you start by picking one — the one that feels most useful to you — and giving it a shot .
It could be the Kickstart Question : “ What ’ s on your mind ?” It ’ s an effective way to start a conversation and get more quickly to the heart of what matters .
It might be the Focus Question : “ What ’ s the real challenge here for you ?” It ’ s easy to be seduced into thinking that the first challenge is the real challenge . It rarely is .
Or it could be the Best Coaching Question in the World : “ And what else ?” Because you ’ ll find that the first answer someone gives you is never the only answer , and rarely their best answer . 3 . Build a habit based on your question Charles Duhigg ’ s The Power of Habit was a catalyst that got people focused on the science behind habits , the building blocks of a better life . Borrowing some of his insights , along with the “ tiny habits ” of B . J . Fogg and insights from others , I ’ ve created a simple model : The New Habit Formula . Its three parts are :
“ When this happens …” Identify the trigger — the situation in which you ’ re looking for a different response . For example : “ In my weekly meeting with Monica , when she asks , ‘ What should I do ? …’”
“ Instead of …” Identify the old behaviour — the habit you ’ re looking to change . To continue the example : “ Instead of my telling Monica the answer …”
“ I will ( in 60 seconds or less ) …” Define a new habit . Fogg says to define any new habit so it takes less than a minute to do . To finish our example : “ I will ask Monica , ‘ What ’ s the real challenge here for you ?’” Stay Curious , My Friend When we feel the pressure to get things done , it ’ s all too easy to default to giving advice and providing solutions , achieving only a Pyrrhic victory . Adapting the principles and practices of building a coaching habit may be a little uncomfortable at first — for you and for the people you lead — but the upshot is you ’ ll work less hard and have more impact . And even the skeptics are interested in that .
15
increase their capacity and potential, asking a good question will do it. 2. You help yourself One of the Box of Crayons coaching principles is Be Lazy. Which always makes people in the audience twitch when they hear it. Because, like you, they’re hardworking, ambitious and driven. Being lazy is anathema to their DNA. But here 0vBV2vVW"&FVG2RF&RFRGf6PvfW"6WF&fFW"B7vW"fFW"f"F6R&V@Rf'7BR7&VFRfW&ǒFWVFVBFVFVF@6W2FRBf'7Bf"fWrFw2BFVWfVGVǒf WfW'Fr&V6W6R^( fRG&VBFVFFW7BFBF02BFfFVBBVvvVBFVӲF226FWVFV@FV6V6B66R^( &RrFrFRFV( 2v&2vV2W"vRfVVFR6BvFW'2bfW'vVpBW"fVWB^( &RfW&6֗GFVBB7G&WF6VBF@&V6W6R^( &Rrf7W6VBW7BG'rFvWBBFRG'rFFvB6Ww'B62FVWv&276&RॖR6RFB6V6Rb6V7FFFRVvgVv&( 2( W'6^( v&W"w&VBv&6rvBVW7F26VbvVVBFF7FRg&VrF7Fb^( &R6r^( &RBFrख6'BvWGFrvBB&VwV&ǒ6rvW&gVVW7F0vWBRv&W72&BBfR&R7BWrSF&VR6VFW&GVFfR&6W0rWN( 2&R6V"W&S( BG'rFGW&RF66FW&R&RVVvbF6R&VGFRƖfR66pBWV7WFfR66rfVG2FvBRF&R&P66ƖR2RVBFN( 26WFrFB6&RFR'WfW'RBvFBvfR6vf6B7BW&f&6RB6F6f7F'WBFRBv&f"FR'W7B6WF6vW ƖRR^( VVBFfrF&VR&6W2FB'&VFP7W'&VB'VW3VW66rF֖WFW2"W72bR6( BRF( @fRFRf"66r"VWB6RRF( BVVB76FVw&VR"FVFW'7FBf766rFV26WfVvBVW7F0BFRF66ƖRFR6rFV&B2RVVB27G&fRf"G&'&vFBFR666f6fBR66r&VwV"7B'G&6f&֖rFRFW&7F0RfR&FW"FFFr&RFW"v&BआW&R2rFWBFW6R&6W2F7FF6RW"FVfVB&W76P&V6VB7W'fW''f&B'W6W72&WfWr6VBVPF6Vb֖FVFgvB7GRbVFW"FW&Rg&Vv@76&R66W2FRF6B#2W&6VBv26&&F ( BFW67&&VB2( VFWF2FV'VFrFVB7GFr66r&VFVB( ФFFW( &RFVW6ञ( B'6W'fRFB7BvW'2&RFW'&&RB&Vp66r&VFVBB&Vr7W&W2W7B2F7F'27GVGfVBvBǒ&WB6V6G2&Vf&RFW''WFrFV FVG27BvW'2fRFGf6Rvfr6WFЧ&FrB7vW"ffW&rFR7B7FFǒvV^( &R6fW'6FF6RrV6ǒPG&FR7W&6Gf"vfrGf6R^( &R66VBBpV6ǒBV2"6VW7Fखג&FR66r&BffW"WFR6WfVW76VFVW7F2vW'2BVFW'26VBfRFV"&WW'F&R( B7VvvW7BR7F'B'6rR( BFPRFBfVV27BW6VgVFR( BBvfrB6BगB6VB&RFR67F'BVW7F( vN( 2W"֖C( ФN( 2VffV7FfRvF7F'B6fW'6FBvWB&PV6ǒFFRV'BbvBGFW'2गB֖vB&RFRf7W2VW7F( vN( 2FR&V6VvPW&Rf"S( N( 2V7F&R6VGV6VBFF涖rFBFPf'7B6VvR2FR&V6VvRB&&Vǒ2"B6VB&RFR&W7B66rVW7FFRv&C( BvBV6S( &V6W6R^( fBFBFRf'7B7vW 6VRvfW2R2WfW"FRǒ7vW"B&&VǒFV &W7B7vW"2'VB&B&6VBW"VW7F6&W2GVv~( 2FRvW"b&Bv26FǗ7BF@vBVRf7W6VBFR66V6R&VB&G2FR'VFp&62b&WGFW"ƖfR&'&vr6Rb26vG2pvFFR( F&G>( b"fvrB6vG2g&FW'2( fR7&VFVB6RFVâFRWr&Bf&VG2F&VP'G2&S( vVF2V2( n( FVFgFRG&vvW"( BFR6GVFখv6^( &Rrf"FffW&VB&W76Rf"WS( ĖגvVVǒVWFrvF6vV6R62( v@6VBF( n( ( Ю( Ė7FVBb( n( FVFgFRB&VfW"( BFR&@^( &RrF6vRF6FVRFRWS( Ė7FV@bגFVƖr6FR7vW"( n( Ю( Ēvc6V6G2"W72( n( FVfRWr&Bfvp62FFVfRWr&B6BFW2W72F֖WFRFFFf6W"WS( Ēv66( vN( 2FR&V6VvRW&Rf"S( ( Х7F7W&W2גg&V@vVvRfVVFR&W77W&RFvWBFw2FRN( 2FV7FFVfVBFvfrGf6RB&fFr6WF26Wfrǒ'&2f7F'FFrFR&6W0B&7F6W2b'VFr66r&B&RƗGFPV6f'F&RBf'7B( Bf"RBf"FRVRPVB( B'WBFRW6B2^( v&W72&BBfR&P7BBWfVFR6WF72&RFW&W7FVBFBP