Have you ever wondered what makes an athlete a legend? Is it the innate talent they have, or is it simply having the desire and will to do what it takes to get there? “Both”, most would argue. However, there is a success factor that can easily get lost between the lines: Coaching readiness.
“Something that stands out for me every time we train with tennis ledged Rafa Nadal is his coachability. Even after 22 Grand Slams, he still constantly listens and welcomes feedback. I have never seen him practice without a high intensity and purpose— ever,” Says Allistair McCaw, the author of multiple best-selling books, including Champion Minded. Indeed, coachable people openly and humbly listen to honest feedback and willingly apply that feedback to improve their development.
The recipe for coachability
Toni Nadal, uncle and main architect of Nadal’s career, adds to this notion in his book Todo se puede entrenar (Everything is Coachable). He says that training his nephew Rafa Nadal in adverse situations – for example, on courts that were in bad condition, with poor lighting, and with bad quality tennis balls – developed his abilities to the fullest extent. He also adds that he believes winning or losing does not depend as much on physical conditions as on attitude, discipline, and approach.
These wise words pretty much sum up what coaching readiness is – whether it be about a pro athlete or for a pro leader in your organization. Being coachable is having the attitude, discipline, and approach to help you adapt to – and even thrive in – situations that might otherwise be overwhelming. In other words, coachability is the art of ingesting and learning regardless of what your preconceived notions are. And it is key to success.
Isn’t that a mindset your organization can benefit from? Yes. In fact, it is the most important mindset that can generate growth and render it sustainable. Coaching readiness is the first step to transforming your organization into a thriving entity. It is also the best skill-set you can offer your people.
Let’s see how coaching readiness can boost your organization.
Coaching readiness helps develop purpose
Coachable individuals are able to develop a distinct vision for themselves; they become committed to their goals and purposes. They know how to adapt and adjust accordingly, especially in difficult, high-stress situations, simply because they have a clear understanding of the end game. A sense of purpose is a powerful tool; it is stronger than any negative emotion that might arise throughout their professional lives.
Purpose is a link to a goal greater than oneself; it is a self-organizing objective that directs people and infuses even the most challenging activities with value and meaning. Purpose is more than a basic goal or objective since it is long-term and has a deeper significance. Getting your leaders to identify their purpose in life and confirming that they overlap with organizational outcomes will make sure that your time together is worthwhile. It also ensures that their efforts are rewarding on a higher level – a state of mind that boosts engagement and retention.
Coaching readiness promotes learning agility
Learning agility is the ability and willingness to unlearn, learn, and relearn. When you transfer this notion into the workplace, it’s about quickly learning how to be effective in new and often difficult situations. An agile learning mindset provides the leader with a toolset that can solve problems and also support others in navigating such situations.
Transformation is only possible when your leaders and teams adopt an agile learning mindset. A noteworthy point here is to consider learning agility as a mindset, not an ability; it can be acquired. And coaching is a facilitator for that. Coaching is about self-awareness and self-reflection, which includes being aware of your strengths and improvement points and willing to take action to improve. It is also closely linked to being aware of your purpose. Surely, we all have experienced at some point in our lives that it becomes a lot easier to learn something once we understand why we are learning it, in other words, how it serves our purpose.
Coaching readiness fosters trust within the organization
Reaching a level where everyone in the organization is aware of their purpose, equipped with the necessary tools to solve issues, and pacing towards a common goal, creates organizational harmony. By elevating coaching readiness, you create a workforce that is mentally aligned. People who are threatened by having to learn something new or do things differently become a thing of the past, not the present and definitely not the future.
Coachable leaders are willing to recognize their own role in the outcome rather than blaming external conditions or others. This creates an atmosphere where trust can foster and thus brings about countless possibilities that spark growth. There is confidence that everyone is working toward the same objective, and everyone is aware that organizational growth equals success for each and every individual.
Coachable athletes understand that they’re not perfect and that there’s always room to improve. By helping your leaders and teams acquire that mindset, you will be giving them the perfect tool to set the scene for growth.