Mentors and Coaches, “No Successful Person Does It Alone”

By Greg A. Pestinger

Last month, we talked about the importance of knowing what you want with absolute clarity. We talked about having a positive mindset, finding balance and identifying your major definite purpose, that one goal that when achieved will have the greatest impact on your life.

This month, I want to talk about putting an accountability system in place to actually “get it done.” I have found that allowing people to coast through life undermines the organization, destroys a person’s self-esteem and in turn creates a system of dependence, blame, excuses and entitlement that negatively impacts all involved.

In my 30+ years of high performance results for fortune 500 companies and mentoring based nonprofits, it has been “accountability” that has insured success. For my teams, “accountability” was the best way a manager could show that “what we did mattered.” Accountability says that “who we are matters” and when we matter, self-confidence and the courage to push the limits for goal achievement are in reach. Accountability creates a culture of belonging in which employees act like owners and do what it takes to win in the marketplace.

So, what’s the first step to ensure that you are getting the guidance and being held accountable for reaching your full potential?

Surround Yourself with People Who Believe in You – Who have you chosen to surround yourself with? Review your networks, the organizations that you belong to, your friends and family. Who have you chosen to emulate as role models? Make sure they bring energy and optimism to your relationship? Make sure they encourage you, connect you, teach you and hold you accountable for the goals you have set for yourself. Are they honest with you; willing to share the good, the bad and the ugly to make you better? Now here is the hard part, if they aren’t, are you willing to walk away and find someone who is?

Find A Mentor – I have been fortunate to have had incredible mentors throughout my life. Men and women who settled for nothing less than my best. Mentors who played a very important role in my success, happiness and the rewarding life that followed. Mentors are incredible people, successful in their own right, who want to share that success with others. Mentors can be from every walk of life; your family, your church, community leaders, teachers and at work. Mentors get great joy in sharing their success so ask them for their support. You will be surprised how honored they will be for the opportunity.

Mentors can also come from relationships where you least expect it. These are very special mentors that come to you through the good deeds that you provide to other people. For me that has been the young men that I have had the honor of serving as a mentor myself or the incredible work teams that I have lead as a manager. Somewhere in the relationships things begin to change, the teacher becomes the student and in so doing personal growth becomes a two-way street. Some of my greatest learning in life has come through young people that started out as employees, students and mentees.

Hire a Personal or Professional Coach – By now, you most likely know that I am a Certified FocalPoint Coach and that I have chosen to dedicate my career to helping businesses and high performing people help themselves realize their full potential. This has led me down a wonderful path of meeting incredibly courageous business owners and individuals who are already successful but know that they can be even greater. Through self-awareness, they have taken the first step to do just that. A professional coach might be the answer if option one and two above do not help you get where you want to go. Hiring a coach is a big commitment of time and money so doing your due diligence is a critical first step in finding a great coach that is:

  1. a good fit for you or your organization – You are going to be spending a lot of time with each other, so you better get along. Great coaches ensure they are working with the right clients for fit and don’t accept business that doesn’t. Great coaches have a desire to help other people. You will also be sharing a lot personal information so honesty, trust, confidentiality and the ability to provide non-judgmental questions to help you uncover opportunities is critical.
  2. competent with a proven process – Your coach should have experience solving problems, working with people and a record of success. They should also have a proven system to lead you through the coaching process vs. “winging it” along the way. Great coaches are curious and continuous learners themselves, often hiring their own personal coaches to help with their own personal growth.
  3. client focused, finding “clarity”– First and foremost, you have to have a burning desire to improve yourself or your company. A need that you have identified but haven’t been able to solve. A good coach’s first priority is to help you get from where you are to where you want to go. Sometimes that is personal growth and a balanced life, more times than not it centers around making more money, finding more time, building a better team or creating a plan for the future that improves your life.

It has been said that “we are the company we keep”. Nothing could be truer and “surrounding yourself with people who believe in you” is one of the greatest joys in life and key to ensuring that each of us reaches our full potential.

For me, they have been the foundations on which all success has been built. I am grateful for their support. Thank you, Mom, Dad, Grandma D, Donna, Father K, Dennis, Ron, Tom P, Dean, Margie, Tom K, Ann, Margaret, Steve, Sean, Austin, Brad, Ryan, Jake G, Wyatt, Joey, Ben, Jake B, and the Men on the Quest to Greece.

Join us next month as we explore and add “prioritizing your time” to the equation for a happy and successful life. Time is our most precious resource and when used correctly, ensures that we are working on the right things to achieve our goals and deliver on our greatest dreams.

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