- You could accelerate your goal achievement and reach the next level in your business and/or personal life in a time frame you never thought possible?
- You could employ a secret weapon to help you win more in all areas of your life?
- You could become the better leader, parent, spouse, etc. you’ve always wanted to be?
I told you that you could find the help you need in achieving all that by making one simple decision:
To become more coachable!
Rate Your Coachability
On a scale of 1 to 10, where would you rate yourself on how coachable you are? Answering these two questions may help you understand more accurately where you are on that scale:
- How much have you invested in yourself in the last year to be better?
- How many hours have you intentionally invested in yourself in the last twelve months?
[Exercise: Take a look at your phone right now and count how many audiobooks you have in your library. How many books are on your Kindle or other book readers, how many podcasts have you marked, and how many learning notes do you have from past events? This should tell you something.]
Coaching is a force multiplier; it’s a powerful tool used by too few. Why are so many people not being coached? Perhaps it’s because they’re not as coachable as they could be and they don’t proactively and strategically seek advice. Perhaps it’s because they know coaching matters, yet they have a tendency to put it off; they don’t think they have the time. It’s a blind spot for many.
If you’re ready for it, coaching is a powerful secret weapon. When new clients come to our RESULTS Center (our think tank), I take note of how they learn.
- Do they ask questions, or just listen?
- Do they take notes?
- Do they engage or just absorb?
- Are they committed to taking action on the strategic plan we’re developing?
I get so excited when I’m around people who are passionate about learning and thus truly coachable.
Ten Qualities of Being Coachable
Over the more than three decades I’ve been coaching, I’ve observed the qualities of the people who seem to respond best to receiving learning—the ones who really get it, internalize what they’ve learned, and immediately begin to put it to work in their lives so they can get even better results. They take action, and they execute. I’ve been blessed to coach many who were already excelling (that’s who I work with) and help them go to another level of their game. (Whether they lead a small, medium, or large-sized organization is not the differentiator; it’s who they really are.)
As we share these qualities with you, I encourage you to take a careful look at yourself and see how they apply to you. At the end of this article, we’ve included a simple instrument for you to rate yourself on each of these qualities.
- Strong self-esteem: People with strong self-esteem don’t have to defend their position. In fact, they exhibit a measure of humility and are open to asking themselves, Am I wrong? Can I improve? What am I not seeing? They have the confidence to say, I can invest a little of my time, energy, and money to be better. Those who are not strong often seem to feel like they always need to be right. They perhaps have not built up enough of an emotional bank account to say, I could be wrong.
- Open. How often do you seek insights and perspectives from a mentor, a trusted colleague, your banker, your financial planner, and maybe even your kids or other people who are part of your life?
- Curious. Dr. Denis Waitley and I were invited to join Zig Ziglar in making his last video before he passed. The three of us were interviewed in Zig’s studio by Gerhard Gerschwandtner, founder of Selling Power magazine. At one point during the interview, I reversed the question to Gerhard: “What do you think is the keyword that is most valuable in seeking sales/success?” He surprised me with his response: “Curiosity.” He suggested that curiosity drives a person to ask questions, including the why’s, and eventually get into some really great kernels of information. At that moment, I realized how powerful the trait of curiosity really is, and that revelation has impacted my life in a huge way. A person who is very curious is very coachable.
- Hungry to discover best practices. When you’re hungry, you’re eager to learn from everyone you meet, and you wake up every day asking, What can I learn today? You will be open to the best practices your coach shares with you and model part or all of them to grow your effectiveness.
- Willing to be wrong. This is a cousin to having strong self-esteem. Many people aren’t willing to accept when they’re wrong, whether they’re seeing something the wrong way or they’re not as efficient or as effective as they could be. Those who are coachable will have the habit of asking themselves many times a day, Am I right? Am I using my time wisely? Am I eating the best? Then they will be open to the fact that they could be wrong and be willing to pivot to what’s better.
- Understanding you have Blind Spots. This is in the same family as being willing to be wrong. What are you not seeing that a coach could help you uncover? For example, maybe you’re making hiring choices that aren’t as good as they could be because you don’t have the ideal system for hiring the right people.
- Willing to invest in yourself and your team. Do you put money toward books and videos that will make you and your team smarter? And are you open to investing in a coach—the right coach—to make yourself and/or your team better? Do you think of coaching as spending or as investing in yourself, your people, and/or your family?
- Sold out on learning. Have you determined that you will be a lifetime learner and glean every bit of information you can every day? Having the consistent mindset of a student makes you very coachable. I’m not sold out on school; yet I am sold out on learning. I believe the more you learn, the more you earn. Learning from audios, podcasts, books, webinars, seminars, workshops, and masterminding aligns with being coached.
- Self-aware. Are you fully aware of your strengths and weaknesses? How about the values that define your life? When is the last time you used a discovery tool like 360, SWOT analysis, etc. to assess how you relate to others and what your key motivations, habits, challenges, and weaknesses are? Have you sought mentors who will challenge you to improve?
- Willing to take ownership. A coachable person is willing to own up to the mistakes he/she has made and learn from them. Being accountable in this way is a choice you make and defines you as a person who doesn’t make excuses, manages expectations, and controls your thoughts and emotions.
These ten qualities obviously overlap to some extent. The list could be longer. However, I think it gets the job done, as it should help you answer the question, Am I coachable?
Rate yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 in the assessment below and tally up your coachable scorecard. (100 is the best score.)
|1.||Strong self-esteem||No need to defend your position. Humbly ask yourself, What am I not seeing?|
|2.||Open||Often seek insights and perspectives from others.|
|3.||Curious||Have a strong sense of curiosity that drives you to ask questions, including the why’s.|
|4.||Open to discovering best practices||Eager to learn from everyone you meet; open to best practices your coach shares with you.|
|5.||Willing to be wrong||Accept when you’re wrong. In fact, often seek to discover if you’re wrong so you can be better.|
|6.||Understand you have blind spots||Eager for your coach to uncover the things you can’t see.|
|7.||Willing to invest in yourself and your team||Willing to put money toward things that will make you and your team smarter and more effective—including books, videos, and the right coach. Think invest vs. spend.|
|8.||Sold out on learning||Eager lifetime learner. Invest hours every week to be better.|
|9.||Self-aware||Aware of your strengths, weaknesses, values, key motivations, habits, etc. and assess yourself often.|
|10.||Willing to take ownership||Accountable to own up to your mistakes without making excuses.|
How did you do?
If you’re not as coachable as you thought you were or want to be, then work on those areas you’re not strong in. Decide today to become more coachable so you can take full advantage of this powerful force multiplier that can change your life and bring you extraordinary success and results.
This concept of Are you coachable? comes from one of our newest books that helps winners win more. If you are interested in this topic and want to learn more, be on the lookout. When it gets officially published, we will have it available in our online store.
Geoffrey Wexler Orthodontist says
Tony, Thanks For this,
I believe you are spot-on in all those points.
I don’t know how to rate myself on the answers, but agreed strongly with all the tenets