Get leadership coaching but don’t admit you got it.
The best in every field of endeavor gets coaching — that being objective, professional advice and direction. Trust me, whatever field you’re in, your competition is getting outside input right now.
To compete you should too but just don’t tell anyone. Not that it’s a sign of weakness, far from it. But because whatever you do in executing, it’s you executing it’s not the coach.
When Peyton Manning won Super Bowl XX the sports pundits didn’t quip about the great coaching, pointers, guidance, direction or advice he was given. No, they rallied about what a great quarterback he was. And in a locker room interview Manning wisely said it’s his team that made it happen. He didn’t say, “It was due to the great coaching.”
When you similarly win and they say good job, you say, “Yes, I have a great team.” Do not say, “Yes, I had great coaching.”
News anchors on your local television network affiliate are totally scripted and coached as to what, when, and how to report the news. The casual banter is scrolling across the monitor for them to read along with the physical gesture or expression to use that corroborates with the words.
Whether on the athletic field or on television everyone gets coached but the success is in what you do with it — your execution. It’s just not necessary to say it’s due to coaching.
I tell executives that I coach in the business world to take full credit for anything good they did even when I helped with the strategy and approach. I got paid, that’s my thank you. I tell them, “You are the one who did it and that’s why you take credit.”
My long time friend and mentor, Jack Falvey, wrote hundreds of editorials published in the Wall Street Journal. He told me how to get my own byline. I did it and later thanked him. He said, “I’ve told countless people how to do it, but you did it. Don’t thank me, it was all you.”
So that’s why I say: 1) do seek executive coaching (from me preferably!), 2) when you do stellar things, say thank you and own the success. It’s due to you.
Benton is co-author of new book, The Leadership Mind Switch (McGraw-Hill, 2017