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Insights on Coaching and Professional Growth from The Daily Bolster

March 14, 2024

Mentorship and coaching are valuable ways to promote professional growth—but do you know what a truly impactful coaching engagement looks like? How do you cultivate a culture of mentorship within an organization?

Check out these clips from The Daily Bolster, where our guests share their thoughts on mentorship, coaching, and leadership growth. 

Real growth takes work 

For a coaching engagement to be successful, you have to be willing to put in effort. Jerry Colonna tells us that some people seek out a coach when they want someone to tell them what to do, but that’s not how effective progress is made. When he interviews potential coaching clients, he looks for someone with the right attitude, who is fully invested and ready to do the work to grow. 

Jerry Colonna is the founder of Reboot, a leadership consulting and coaching firm. In this episode, he and Matt discuss the ins and outs of CEO coaching engagements, from finding the right fit to the importance of a CEO’s mindset. 

Successful coaching relationships are structured

What makes a coaching partnership successful? According to Matt Spielman, structure plays a major role. A coaching relationship, he tells us, is a partnership. In order to maximize impact, both parties should agree on goals and timelines, establish clear expectations, and commit to prioritizing the coaching process. Without this framework, it’s easy to get derailed. 

Matt Spielman, CEO of professional development firm Inflection Point Partners, shares the 3 ingredients necessary for a productive coaching relationship.

Growth involves discovering answers for yourself

When CEO coach Jonathan Shapiro works with clients, his goal is for them to discover the best answers for themselves. While he does occasionally give explicit advice, he focuses on asking questions that lead to further curiosity, understanding, and insight. 

CEO coach and multi-time CEO Jonathan Shapiro chats about his professional journey, making the move into executive coaching, and the lessons on leadership that changed his career. 

Support and emotional liberation have impact

When you’re leading a team, it’s important to engage with feedback—but it’s equally important that you free yourself from carrying others’ burdens. Max Yoder talks about emotional liberation, a skill he learned from Marshall Rosenberg, who was not a direct mentor, but a psychologist and author whose work had a significant impact on his life. Armed with this strategy, Max changed the way he thought about the responsibility of leadership. He shares that his mentors encouraged him to put it into practice and helped him see the impact as it increased his capacity and promoted business growth.  

Mentors can help you adjust your strategy, find new ways of doing things, and even recalibrate your expectations of yourself. That insight—and the resulting reallocation of resources—leads to growth.

In this episode, Max Yoder, founder of Lessonly, shares his experience as a young professional with an unusual career trajectory and what it was like moving straight into the founder role. He and Matt also talk about emotional liberation, receiving feedback, and learning to be a CEO. 

Organizational professional development should be a priority

There are a variety of relationship types that point toward professional growth, but mentors, coaches, and sponsors are particularly prevalent. In this clip, Matt Blumberg and Sarah E. Brown define these categories as they use them. Professional mentors have usually been in your shoes before or have developed a skillset you’re working on, and they help you advance your career or become better at your job. The work you do with a coach is a bit broader, focused on becoming the best version of yourself as a whole. Sponsors support you within your organization and often provide support from a cross-functional perspective. 

Dedicating time to these relationships is a great way to advance your career—and if you’re managing a team, empowering them to pursue professional development is a great tool for retention. 

Sarah E. Brown is a tech marketing expert, startup mentor, ecosystem builder, and the author of Lead Upwards. In this episode, she and Matt discuss creative career paths, their thoughts on the contrast between startups and large companies, and the value of mentorship. 

Ready to take charge of your professional growth? Bolster can help you find a mentor or coach who fits your needs. 

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