Exec Coaching, Decoded

Written By Shweta Handa Gupta, Leadership Coach

In the words of one of my clients - having a coach is like “adding rocket fuel to my professional life and my leadership.”

Coaching has come a long way from being a ‘fix’ to boost derailing performance of top executives to now being desirable and almost aspirational for ambitious professionals!

Yet, for many of us, it still remains a confusing concept. What is coaching? How does this even work? What does a coach do? Is this for me? What would I work on with a coach?

Simply put, coaching is a catalyst for change and growth – in your career and life. In recent times, my clients have achieved things as varied as successful career pivots, coveted promotions to designing a meaningful life and career.

Examples of typical goals we work on include:

- Finding clarity and conviction to take charge of their career and life

- Designing and preparing for the next leap in their career, business or life

- Enhance leadership effectiveness and business impact at their workplace

The primary tools of coaching are powerful conversations and incisive, generative questions that help you discover yourself and design your future. A coaching conversation with the right coach is a safe space where you can share absolutely anything and know that you will not be judged, but accepted and celebrated for who you are. Unconditional positive regard forms the foundation of a partnership that is designed to evoke thinking, creative solutions and lasting shifts in your life.

Coaching engagements start with defining a meaningful goal that you want to work towards. As you navigate towards your goal, a coach will be your sounding board, your challenger, the person who helps you expand your awareness of yourself, your environment, your abilities, your power, your options and your solutions.

A proficient coach is able to use their intuition, observation and expertise to help you notice your patterns - more importantly, to unravel how they serve/block you and then to help you work with them to navigate to your success. An example of a common hindering pattern is procrastination. In my experience of coaching people for over 14+ years, I’ve learnt that procrastination is a subconsciously learned mind pattern which can be changed.

Conventional approaches which consider procrastination as a ‘problem’ and aim to “fix” people often backfire because they further aggravate our mind’s blame cycle. When we start from a place of blame we have already primed our brain’s protection and avoidance mechanisms and potentially triggered a vicious cycle of inaction.

Coaching is a powerful method to work with patterns such as procrastination because it starts with positive regard for the client. Coaches focus on eliciting new insights that will help uncover the root cause, the underlying models and beliefs that stimulate our patterns!

Other derailing patterns my clients have worked through to reach their goals include self-doubt, over-thinking, lack of conviction, feeling overwhelmed by options and information, feeling trapped in toxic environments to name a few.

A coach can be just the help you need to take charge of your life and career. What makes coaching even more potent? Future focus and a consistent orientation towards an end goal.

The time to start and design your journey of success has never been better.

One of our members, Rakhee Chachra, who Shweta has coached, shares her experience with coaching :

Shweta Handa Gupta is a leadership coach with 20+ years of experience. She specializes in making complex change simple, deriving from her experience from working with a fortune 50 company and as the CEO of a small business group. As an advisor/member of the board for SMEs and start-ups, she helps create transformative success with observable financial results. She was awarded ‘CEO Coach of the Year’ (2017) - Entrepreneur Magazine. Shweta is empanelled with us and you can book a coaching session with her via the leap.club app if you are a member.