Our thanks to Materurbium (link to his blog to the right) for telling us about a column in a recent issue of The New Yorker. Entitled “Personal Best: Top athletes and singers have coaches. Should you?” it’s an account by a surgeon of his experience using a personal coach, a retired surgeon who had been one of his teachers. In the article, the author notes that coaching has become a fad in recent years. “Self-improvement has always found a ready market, and most of what’s on offer is simply one-on-one instruction to get amateurs through the essentials. It’s teaching with a trendier name.” But he does give the process glowing reviews and credits his coach with helping him improve his “craft.”
As early as 2004 we found that having people join a team of like-minded people could help everyone on the team assess and, if needed, modify their performance to help the individuals and the team move toward their goals. If that is coaching, then so be it.
Why the article by the surgeon touches a nerve (pun intended!) is his recognition at middle-age that he could reach out and trust someone to give him honest feedback about his work. That to us at Team Powered Success is what teams are all about. It’s not that someone has hung out a shingle identifying themselves as a coach and a willingness (for a fee) to work with coachees. It’s the realization that a team of hardworking, like-minded and honest people may do more to further their own and the team’s efforts because they all have something to gain — or to lose.
And what has been your experience with coaches and coaching?