Today, I’m interviewing Dr Keith Webb, author of The COACH Model for Christian Leaders. Keith is a coaching and leadership expert, running leading workshops around the world.
Keith is offering exclusive bonuses when you order his book. Check out the book and the bonuses here.
How did you get your start in Coaching?
I lived in Asia for 20 years. During this time I observed many different leadership and teaching styles. It caused me to reflect on how people learn, grow, and change. I had given up trying to tell people what to do and looked for something different. The coaching style of drawing out from people, fits my paradigm of “what we discover we own.”
What is the “Role” of a coach?
Coaching is personalized learning. And a coach is someone who facilitates a process for that learning. Notice I’m not saying teaching, but learning. Teachers put in, coaches draw out. What makes the coaching role so powerful is that together, the coach and coachee can learn something that neither of them knew before. You can create knowledge, not just share it.
Today you have personally trained more than 10,000 people to be coaches. What would you say are the top 3 things that make a great coach?
1) Belief in the coachee. They can figure it out. They can do it. The coach doesn’t need to do it for them. They just need some help thinking more deeply.
2) Curiosity. Coaches who think they know, aren’t curious, they don’t notice or ask. They are busy guiding the coachee to their way of thinking, which isn’t coaching at all.
3) Humility. It’s not about the coach, it’s about the coachee. Their thinking, ideas, learning, and actions.
You have heard me share that for most of my career I was a “Benevolent Dictator.” My only paradigm of leadership was that “Leaders, while using ‘Please’ and ‘Thank-You’ needed to kindly direct their staff (i.e. “Tell”) on what they needed to do!” Keith, what are the advantages for a leader who uses “Coaching Skills” to lead her/his staff?
Using coaching skills with your staff at appropriate times will draw on their creativity, ingenuity, and gifting. They will take more responsibility and work harder, because they are personally invested in their work. Having coaching style conversations, rather than micromanaging, communicates respect and humanity. You’ll see your staff grow and increase their capacity because you’ve modeled how they can figure things out.
Keith you are a great leader! What is your “Secret Sauce”? i.e. what are the 3–5 leadership principles that you have discovered and executed that have contributed to your success?
You used the word “executed,” that’s my secret sauce. Execution. Ideas are easy, executing is extremely difficult. To execute well you have to know what you’re trying to accomplish, have high standards, do the nitty-gritty details, keep going when you want to quit, and get your produce or service out.
What has been your greatest failure? And what did you learn from it?
There was a period when 3 colleagues experienced difficult job, health, and personal challenges. I didn’t know how to respond, so I didn’t say or do much. Later, I found out how hurtful my lack of response was to each of them. I learned the importance of communicating empathy (without necessarily agreeing), having conversations about painful topics, and that in hard times silence is usually interpreted as judgement.
What is the Greatest Question you have ever been asked?
I was 7 years old: “Would you like two scoops?” Ha! More recently, it’s: “Who is God calling you to become?” So challenging. It’s not what is God calling me to do, but become.
What are your favorite questions to ask those you lead?
What progress have you made? (That’s execution coming out.) What did you learn about yourself from doing it?
As you know Keith – I work in Leadership Development – Developing the Next Generation of Leaders for Cru. What do you think are the Keys to developing the next generation of leaders for any organization?
That’s a big topic. The same things the older generations needed (and still need): Understanding that each person has calling regarding their actions and inner life (being and doing). Having good models to ask questions, listen to their answers, and help them wisely sort out all the information and opportunities they are bombarded with. Offer a wide variety of experiences and don’t allow them to narrow their focus too early and miss out on developing themselves more holistically.
You have released a new updated edition of The Coach Model for Christian Leaders. Can you please whet our appetite by sharing a few of the new tasty morsels that all of us who have been fans of your first edition will find in your new updated edition?
The book teaches how Christian leaders can create powerful conversations to assist others to solve their own problems, reach goals, and develop their own leadership skills in the process. The new edition has more focus on integrating coaching skills into day-to-day leadership roles, while not losing the role of coach in the process. Over the years, we’ve found more effective ways of teaching fundamental coaching skills and I include them in this edition.
Final Question: What questions are you asking yourself lately?
It’s a deep one: How do I need to learn, grow, and change? It’s a further refining of my understanding of what I’m called to do, and how I’m called to be. I now have more opportunities and open doors than ever before. Yet, I feel the need to be more and more focused. How do I need to learn, grow, and change? I ask myself this question more than ever before.
Dr Keith Webb, PCC, is the founder and President of Creative Results Management, a global training organization focused on equipping Christian leaders. For 20 years, Keith lived in Japan, Indonesia, and Singapore. These experiences led him to question conventional leadership practices. In 2004, Keith created the COACH Model® and since then, a series of International Coach Federation (ICF) approved coaching training programs. In the revised and expanded edition of The COACH Model for Christian Leaders, Keith shares the process that he taught more than 10,000 leaders around the world use to solve problems, reach goals, and develop people. Keith blogs at keithwebb.com.
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