Global Leader Tips

Focus on the whole person

The second cornerstone of four cornerstones in co-active model is “Focus on the whole person”. People are usually focus on solving issues that they are facing, not only in the business but also in usual life. Especially in the business, leaders and managers have to focus on the problems or issues that they should solve realizing the required outcome. Under enormous pressure, first task they take on is to identify the problem to be solved. This is quite understandable, and of course solving problem is important. However, leaders manage people, not just problem. Developing talent and creating a more resourceful and effective organization accomplishes sustainable results, long after the presenting problem is solved. Even under organization stress, this whole-person mind set sees opportunity not to be overlooked.
The person does have a problem to solve: a change to make, a dream to fulfill, a task to accomplish, a goal to reach. All of these are true. But this person is more than the problem at hand, or the dream, the task, the goal. This is a whole person: heart, mind, body, and spirit. And this issue, whatever it is, is not neatly isolated. It is inexorably entwined in the person’s whole life.   
The “focus” here should be a soft and broad focus, an attentive focus that includes the whole person and the whole life, listening on many levels. It is not a hard, tight and concentrated focus on the whole person. We should not be focusing on heart, mind, body, and spirit as independent elements. Then a coach or anyone in a co-active conversation ought to be tuned in to the influences that are present in these different dimensions.
Obviously, a focus on the whole person also means that we are aware of all the ways the issue or topic before us is interwoven in the person’s life. The key is increased awareness that the single and narrow subject should be connected to the possible broader or deeper conversations for the person’s whole life. Although a  coach or a leader can work with someone on a very narrow topic, in the co-active way there is a larger picture of the whole person and the person’s whole life.

Global Leader Tips

NCRW

NCRW stands for “People are Naturally Creative, Resourceful, and Whole”, and is the most essential and characteristic fundamental belief of Co-Active Way and Model. NCRW is the first cornerstone of four cornerstones that represent the fundamental beliefs of co-active way of being in relationship and conversation at the deepest level. The co-active model rests on the four cornerstones, declarations, including NCRW. Four cornerstones have structured to provide the fundamental nature in order for engaged and empowered relationship, then for evoked drastic and bold transformation.
NCRW means that all of the people are capable: capable of finding answers, capable of choosing, capable of taking actions, capable of recovering when they meet with difficulties, and, especially, capable of learning. In the co-active model, it is more than a belief; it is a stand we take.
If we are in the alternative belief that people are fragile and dependent. With that belief, the job of coach or leader would be to guide the coachee or subordinate to the safest possible outcome. The differences are quite obvious. When we take a stand for other people’s creativity and resourcefulness, we feel some kind of respect and honor on their behalf, not overanxiety or care. Besides, when we assume that others are creative and resourceful, we can be curious and open to their enormous possibilities.  
The keyword here is naturally. Human beings are fairly creative and resourceful enough, when they were born as babies. On the way of growing up to adult through children, people have various experiences in the real life each by each. Although, sometimes the brightness of creativity and resourcefulness might be clouded in their circumstances, the natural capabilities are still existing inside themselves. So, if we believe their natural capabilities inside, we can dig them out certainly. 
Then final keyword is whole, wholeness. The wholeness here means that we can believe and accept all of their capabilities regardless of each character; good and bad, bright and dark, big and small, generous and delicate, white and black, etc. The structured total NCRW provides the infinite, limitless and eternal possibilities to show their capabilities getting their desired outcome and happy life. 

Global Leader Tips

Intuition

Intuition is one of the most essential but characteristic resources in Co-Active way. And it is also utilized in the business decision making same as co-active coaching or conversations, especially it could be striking in the senior executives or leaders.
Then, let’s think about what is intuition here. Maybe we’ve had the experiences like this: In the first walking trek trail, when someone comes to two paths branch without sign, instinctively turn to the right, trusting his sense of direction. Or this may have happened: In the book shop, taking a book casually from the bookshelf, then meet with the article by chance that have been looked for long time. He doesn’t have any idea, it’s a kind of unexpected encounter. We might call it a gut feeling.
Gut feelings also happen in the business. Imagine the scenario like this: He has an important position to fill, and has three candidates. On paper, one candidate stands out for the job experiences and skills, but it just doesn’t feel right to him. His instinct tells him the right choice is the third candidate he interviewed. He actually has strong feeling he trust, but it also means he will need to have a convincing rationale for his instinct. How will he justify his gut feeling to HR and his boss? 
They are typical cases with intuition: in the moment it feels more reliable than the data, the analysis, and all the usual pros and cons. It comes as an impulse that is often ignored or discredited because it’s not logical and therefore not viewed as credible. Nevertheless, intuition can be critically valuable as a powerful, additional channel for information, which is why it is defined as one of five contexts in the Co-Active Model. When that channel is available and open, intuition has the potential accelerating a process and deepen the conversations in ways that are sometimes surprising. So, we can simply add this additional and powerful option with a shortcut possibly to our usual analysis, evaluation and a structured process for addressing an issue.
Although we have words to define intuition, the actual experience is sometimes hard to explain. We usually don’t understand the real source of intuition, and many people face the difficulty of verifying that is real. Sometimes there’s no observable evidence for the conclusion, additionally in some cases, the conclusions from their intuition could be actually contrary to observable evidence.
Someone who thinks that it’s difficult to believe intuition, he frequently treats as guessing or being lucky. He doesn’t understand, trust or believe in intuition. And these kind of people like logical thinking and mind as a common process of critical decision making.
In addition to them, intuition is recognized too weird or unprofessional, so people are sometimes shy about admitting they have used their intuition. They also refrain from using intuition actively. It looks like quite wasting of powerful and effective resource or channel of information.
Both a rational mind and an intuitive gut feeling are quite important for the business as well as daily choices in the life. Neither information source is the right or wrong. They provide information from different source. Therefore, we should utilize both of them situationally with the most creative and effective combination in both business and life generally.
When people find out the most appropriate answer to the question, he can access to some different sources; memory, logical mind, history and intuition. Besides, intuition always forwards the action and deepens learning in spite of right or wrong.

Global Leader Tips

Effective Listening

Listening is one of the critical contexts not only for coaching, but also for building up the collaborative relationship in business. Actually, to be truly listened to is a striking experience, partly because it is so rare. When another person is totally with someone, then leaning in, interested in every word, eager to empathize, he must feel seen and understood. People open up when they know they are really being listened to, then they expand and have more presence. They feel safer and more secure as well, and trust deepens. A true commitment to listening well is quite important in any conversation, especially critical to effective coaching.

Although everyone has listening capability as one of the talents, listening is also a skill that people can learn and develop through training and practice. Masterful professional coaches have taken their abundant gift and brought it to a high level of proficiency. They use it with the same unconscious grace same as an athlete uses in a sport or a musician in a performance. 
Most people do not listen at a very deep level. In everyday listening people listen mostly to the words. The focus is only on the words in the conversations. People usually start a conversation but within seconds they’ve disconnected to process the words internally or to pay attention to one of hundred other distractions whether they are also important, just attractive, or simple nagging. They seem to live in a mostly wireless world where they connect and disconnect internally and invisibly, and same things happen in the usual conversations.
The absence of real listening is especially prevalent at work. Under pressure to get the job done. The workers listen for the minimum of what they need to know so they can move on the next subject as soon as possible. It’s no wonder people feel like mere functions in a whirling machine, not human beings. It’s no wonder that employee engagement is a serious issue in organization today. Although everyone’s talking, no one’s listening.
In the effective coaching, effective listening is one of the most critical factors. The outstanding listeners know how to maximize the listening interaction. The effective interaction creates the series of actions in listening, definitely not passive hearing.

There are two aspects of listening in a co-active context. One is awareness, and the other one is impact.
Awareness includes the information that they receive in what hear with their ears, but they also listen with all of their senses and with their intuition. They hear, see, and experience sounds, words, images, feelings and energy. They listen not only to the person but, simultaneously, to everything else that is happening in the space.
The second aspect, impact, points to the effect of listening on others. To be an effective listener, they need to be conscious not only of what they are listening to, but also of the impact they have when they act on their awareness. Most of the time, this consciousness occurs just below the surface while the attention is still on the other person.

Clearly, listening is not passive, especially in the coaching relationship. Then the listening context in the coaching model can be utilized for business conversations and collaborative relationship.

Global Leader Tips

Coaching Space

Building up the collaborative relationship between leader, manager and member, subordinate, the mood of the conversational space is critically important for them. In co-active coaching, coaching space has to be two critical characteristics as an effective coaching environment. One is safe enough for coachee to take risks they need to take. And the another one is a courageous place where coachees are able to approach their lives and the choice they make with motivation, creativity and commitment. And additionally, safe does not mean comfortable. Sometimes they need straight and severe conversations to find out the way that coachee really desiring.
To make the safe and courageous space for the positive and constructive conversations, the several characteristics are essential for them. One is confidentiality. Confidentiality means that the coach must not disclose any information he has known in the coaching conversations at all without coachee’s agreement. Especially the conversation in the business organization or team, this is critically important for the safe feeling to address real, frank but exciting subjects, sometime including quite personal factors. Second one is trust. An agreement to hold the coaching conversation confidential is one key component in building trust. Trust is also built over time as both coachee and coach learn they can be counted on and the coachee learns that the relationship delivers clear result. Third one is speaking the truth. Building up the real environment where the coachee can tell the whole truth about what they have done, and not done, the coaching space should be without evaluation and judgement. Because the truth carries no consequence other than learning, discovery and new insight to them. Then, fourth one is openness and spaciousness. This is a space where coachees can breathe, experiment, fantasize and strategize without imitation. It is also a place which they can vent their anger, troubles, spite, fear and regrets.
Based on these elements of the relationship between coach and coachee, it is quite important for them intentionally and consciously design their working relationship. In addition to this, they need redesign their relationship continuously, when their relationship is going to need any new elements for their deeper and more credible one.
For leaders, managers and supervisors, the “design” of the working relationship will not be structured, but the essence of the coaching space above is quite referential. It is certainly not doing coaching on team members or direct reports. The context for coaching in an informal organization or leadership situation is a commitment to support and development. This commitment to personal development is the essence of the business case for coaching as a leadership and management competency.

Global Leader Tips

Coaching Relationship

The relationship in the co-active coaching provides the great and essential hint to build up the collaborative relationship in the business. Although there will be significant differences in each situation, all coaching focuses on the context of intentional relationship. The professional coach starts with the deep understanding of the coachee, the person being coached, who is in the unique life and work situation, with unique goals and desire for change, unique abilities, unique interests and even unique habits of sabotage. Then he is able to have the series of conversation with pure curiosity, about the theme that the coachee addressing, like life style shift, career change, leadership, performance improvement, health and well being issues. Through these conversations, there is no common guidelines, blueprints or templates. Coaching is inherently dynamic and personal that creates a unique, empowered relationship for desiring change.
Especially in co-active coaching, the peer relationship is emphasized. Coach and coachee have equal, though different, roles. They are co-active in the relationship, so they are collaborators, working together for the benefit of the coachee. In this peer relationship, the mentality of the coach must make the shift from “I’m powerful” to “the coaching relationship is powerful”, then all the power of the relationship between coach and coachee will make a maximum contribution only for the ultimate transformation that coachee desiring. The essence of these co-active relationship is sure to be the great reference or hint when they implement the collaborative relationship in to the business, like conversations between leader, manager and member, subordinate. 

Global Leader Tips

Coaching in the Business

Taking the Co-Active like collaborative communication in to the business, coaching method may be one of the simple first step. Although the co-active coaching model has a lot of components and tools totally, several parts can utilize in the real business situation as easy and practical implementation. Shifting from the traditional top to down business protocol to the collaborative one, starting to believe the capabilities of the member is essential. Empowering the member means to believe the member’s potential capabilities, then to find them out creatively and effectively. So, the coaching method can utilize as powerful, helpful hints and tips.
In the coaching type relationship, the being of the coach or leader has to be quite important. They must be present: respect, openness, compassion, empathy, and a sincere commitment to speaking the truth. They assume strength and capability, not weakness, helplessness, or dependence. They assume a deep desire to give the best and pursue potential. The most critical belief for the coach or leader is that every situation has possibilities and that people really do have the power of choice. It shifts the conversation from simply analyzing and problem solving to working together more effectively and learning to be more resourceful so that future issues are actually easier to address because the relationship is resilient and creative.

Global Leader Tips

Co-Active way in the Business

     
     
In the unprecedented paradigm shift, leadership or management style had to be changed from legacy top to down to a new cooperation with the partnership.
Co-Active is a kind of coined word developed and promoted by CTI: Co-Active Training Institute in US, as a coaching method over the 20 years. In the long and global implementation of the model, Co-Active has been not only for coaching method, but also has been utilized as a co-active based conversations, relationship, leadership or partnership. They all look through the lens of the co-active way. Then the co-active way is a way of effectively empowering people to find their own answers, encouraging and supporting them on the path as they continue to make important choices collaboratively.
Let’s imagine the typical example in the mission-critical project situation. The team leader has many ways to have the conversation. One way is a kind of the traditional one. Asking for a report, analyze the situation, and then provide work direction. Then here’s a different way, a way that is more co-active, collaborative. For the team leader it involves empowering the team member who may be much closer to the actual issues, possibly brainstorming alternative action steps and agreeing on a course of action. In this way the nature of relationship shifts, the context for the conversation is more inclusive and more empowering. It is a kind of invitation to see there is a choice and each has a different impact. There is a wider range of leadership responses available. In this fast-paced world of work, the pressure is on to create more engaged, more proactive, and more empowered members. Waiting for a higher authority or escalating decision making impedes teams that need the agility to respond to chaotic and complex situation. Creating and supporting a co-active way of working together delivers on the imperative and creates a culture of resilience and resourcefulness.

Global Leader Tips

Empowered Leadership

     

In the traditional pyramided organization, the typical leadership used to be depended to the top to down oriented one-way communication, like a legacy leadership. It could be very fast and strict control for the simple business execution.
However, the business environment has been drastically changed. The business requires the faster, flatten, borderless and flexible operations based on the extraordinary evolved IT and Network environment. In addition to this, the critical success factor of the business also has been dramatically changing in the continuous paradigm shift. Then the leadership style has to be changed boldly and adaptively as well as the way of communications in the organization and the virtual team in the various networks. Moreover, in the diversified team, the leadership style with the tolerant communication has to be critically related with the team performance.
The empowerment of the leader can reveal the talent more of each member, can be respected each other, then maximize the creativity and the synergy of the diversified values. In the empowered team, there’s no control, no restriction, no precedent, no formula. There’s free, flexible, creative and future oriented energy and harmony. The essential role of the leader there, is just orchestrate the team same as a conductor in the orchestra. 

Global Leader Tips

Cultural Skill

For the effective management of the diversified global team, Cultural Skill is one of the crucial capabilities that the global leaders have to provide. Cultural Skill is a kind of capability that utilizes the culture actively. Cultural Skill is made up of four components, cultural due diligence, style switching, cultural dialogue and cultural mentoring. Cultural due diligence is the series of the understanding processes of the cultural tendency and characteristics of himself and his partners or colleagues. To understand distinction of himself and others is critically fundamental for making the strategy how to manage the cultural gap in the series of conversations and deepening the relationships. Style switching is one of the effective skills that can minimize the cultural gaps then making the closer and deeper relationship beyond the different styles in their cultures. Cultural Dialogue is a kind of the tactical preparations for the smoother and less stressful conversations between the people with different cultural backgrounds. Then, Cultural Mentoring is getting the sound and valid suggestions how to handle the practical situation with the cultural differences. As a wise cultural mentee, we should find someone who deeply understands the cultural difference and has some series of experiences in the real field with diversity. Anyway, Cultural Skill is the critically essential for the global leaders from now on.