When it comes to strategies for rising to the top, what is fact and what is fiction? The Wall Street Journal recently published an article that interviewed women CEOs of Fortune 500 firms about how they climbed the ladder, and what they see as the biggest myths and truths about advancement.
It didn’t surprise me that many of the women interviewed said continual improvement, having a personal strategy, and developing the right leadership skills was key to their success.
On Having a Personal Strategy
Angela Braly of Wellpoint said, “Great athletes, great leaders, and great companies must always look for ways to get better, even if they’re already at the top of their field. Whether you are a person or a company, if you’re not continuously improving, others will be and they will eventually beat you.”
Executive coaching is one of the best ways to ensure you are at the top of your game. Sometimes you know you’re facing obstacles, but don’t know exactly what they are or how to get over them. A coach can help you identify challenges, come up with strategies to face these challenges, and help ensure you have the tools to overcome them. An executive coach can show you areas of improvement—what you need to do better—so you are positioned to win.
Denise Morrison of Campbell Soup said, “I observed that people are strategic about brands and business, but not necessarily strategic about themselves. I developed a strategic process for my career plan that set the final destination, developed the career track, identified skills to leverage and skills to build, took line positions to gain experience, and sought leadership and management training on the job, through special assignments, coaching, and networking.”
A recent Hay Group study of Fortune 500 companies showed that 21-40% use executive coaching. In these companies, coaching is used as standard leadership development for top-flight executives, as well as by middle management and those in the process of climbing the corporate ladder. The organization you work for has a strategy to meet their goals. So should you. A coach can not only tell you if you’re on the right track given your strengths and weaknesses, but can help develop a complementary career strategy designed to maximize results.
On Developing the Right Skills
Beth Mooney of KeyCorp said, “Acquire the credentials you will need for success. And, go after the ones with the most potential to open the greatest number of doors for you going forward.”
Working with an executive coach can help you identify the credentials you’ll need to ascend to the top, and can free you from one-sized fits all training that makes it difficult to access your full potential. Executive coaching that specifically aligns training with skills, goals, and passions has been proven to increase employee happiness, productivity, and engagement.
As you consider your professional goals, take some time to think about your own career, and what you’ve learned along the way. What has helped you in your advancement? What has hindered you? And how could leadership coaching help you avoid mistakes and fast-track your way to the top? For a detailed answer to this question, contact TurnKey Coaching Solutions and find out what executive coaching can do for you.
Call TurnKey Coaching & Development Solutions at 281-469-4244.