1-3-4-Coaching and Counseling
Read Genesis 49:8-10
People who are leaders stand out. They don’t necessarily look or act a certain way until the need for their action is apparent. Among their skills our outspokenness, decisiveness, action, and control! These skills can be used for great good or great evil. Judah was a natural leaders.
Strengths and accomplishments
Was a natural leader – outspoken and decisive.
Thought clearly and took action in high-pressure situations.
Was willing to stand by his word and put himself on the line when necessary.
Lessons from his life
God is in control, far beyond the immediate situation.
Procrastination often makes matters worse.
Coaching and Counseling
Effective leaders know how to train and how to counsel trainees. Even more important they understand the differences between these skills and where to use each. Following are brief definitions of training and counseling.
Counseling: A supportive process by a leader to help trainee define and work through personal problems.
Training: A directive process by a trainer to train and orient a trainee to the realities of life and to remove barriers to spiritual growth.
Counseling and coaching share many of the same skills. At times they may seem to overlap.
The Benefits of Training.
Makes peoples lives easier when trainees build their skill levels.
Enables greater delegation so you can have more time to truly lead.
Builds your reputation as a “people developer.”
Develops sharing of leadership responsibilities.
Increases spiritual growth when trainees know what the goals are and how to achieve them.
Positive recognition and feedback increases trainee motivation and initiative.
Increases likelihood of tasks being completed in a quality way.
Increases creativity and innovation of trainees as they feel safe to take risks.
The Benefits of Counseling
Improves spiritual growth when trainees feel listened to and supported.
Reduces tension when trainees feel they can vent their thoughts and feelings and deal with problems openly and constructively.
Reduces team conflict and preserves self esteem when parties having conflict are really listened to.
Helps you solve problems before they occur.
Improves your decision – making when everyone’s ideas are heard and trainee’s strengths and abilities are complimented.
Improves your leadership opportunities when you are known as a leader who can motivate trainees and build constructive working relationships.
Increases self-knowledge and personal satisfaction.
Improves your self-confidence.
Leaders understand how important feedback is. They also known, to be effective. It must be specific. It should als convey your true feelings. When delivering critical messages, it is especially important to let your trainee know exactly how you feel about the situation.
You must identify what you are feeling as specifically as possible.
Leaders sometimes feel frustration or disappointment and respond with anger. Expressing anger can work for you or against you, depending on how you express it and with whom.
Use anger to gain attention and make a point if you normally handle situations coolly and professionally and if you are acting from conviction for something significant.
Following are some techniques for expressing anger productively and effectively.
Admit your angry feelings to yourself.
Take deep breaths to calm yourself.
If you begin to lose control, “drop” your pen (or some similar momentary actions) and as you bend over to get it, regain your composure.
Take a break and do something physically vigorous or highly creative. When you engage in physical or mental exercise, you help dissipate your anger.
Prepare to confront the person or situation that caused you to feel angry.
Leaders often feel stress. Leaders are particularly vulnerable because they often carry heavy work loads. Use the following “stress-busters” whenever you feel your stress level rising.
Be present. You can only live in the moment. Worrying about the past or future is not pleasing to God. When you concentrate on God, you don’t allow time for stressful fretting.
Grow or let go. When you are criticized, don’t take it personally. Does the criticism repeat criticism you have heard previously? If so, perhaps it is valid and points out an area that needs work. If not, and if you believe the criticism is unjust, let it go. You can’t change some people’s minds if they choose to be unfair.
Do your personal best and don’t compare your performance with others. Trust yourself and your abilities.
Don’t let tensions build up inside until you feel like bursting. Get another person’s opinion to help you put the situation in perspective.
Your life isn’t the future. When your life take a turn for the worst, rely on God and your future in heaven to bolster you.
Expand your world. Exercise take up a hobby, go to a movie, plan regular evenings out with a friend or loved one.
Tips to Overcome Stress
Take short breaks
Add variety to your duties
Develop a support system
Keep yourself detached
Develop positive work habits
Encourage positive feed back
Develop leisure interests,
Maintain personal relationships
Leave your work at the office
Keep physically fit
Talk and play with loved ones
Encourage open communication
There are five basic approaches to conflict resolution. They are summarized below:
Avoidance – Non-confrontational. Ignores or passes over issues. Denies issues area problem.
Accommodating Agreeable, non-assertive behavior. Cooperative even at the expense of personal goals.
Win/Lose – Confrontational, assertive and aggressive. Must win at any cost.
Compromising – Important all parties achieve basic goals and maintain good relationships. Aggressive but cooperative.
Problem Solving – Needs of both parties are legitimate and important. High respect for mutual support. Assertive and cooperative.
Each of us operates from a unique perspective. Even if everyone has agreed on a goal or decision, disagreements can arise. When this happens it is essential to know how to resolve a conflict if you plan to be an effective leader. Strong leaders need to be proficient at conflict resolution. Here are seven steps to help you resolve conflicts:
Schedule a meeting with the other party to discuss the situation.
When you meet, initiate a discussion that acknowledges there is a conflict.
Use “I” statements to avoid accusations. Encourage the other party to use “I” statements too.
Ask direct questions that require the other party to talk about the situation.
Repeat what you are hearing. “Based on what you’ve told me, this is a good way to confirm that you understand what you are hearing.
Tell the other party what you want as an outcome and ask what they want.
Agree to work toward a resolution and schedule a meeting if required, to follow-up on the situation.
Leading Difficult People
Difficult people are everywhere. They can be negative, irritating, seemingly impossible to lead, and create stress for everyone around them.
Sometimes it seems easier to avoid or “work around” difficult people, but this is never a good long-term solution. If you learn to assess the person’s behavior and listen with genuine interest, it is possible to effectively manage every difficult person. Good leaders never avoid difficult leadership situations.
Following are seven difficult personality types:
Behavior: Attackers assert their viewpoint forcefully. They requ7ire people to listen to what they say. They need room and time to blow off steam.
Your Action: Address the attacker by name and quietly but firmly. Ask him or her to sit. Then listen carefully to what the attacker has to say. Once calmed, the attacker usually becomes reasonable and may suggest valuable solutions. The worst coping behavior on your part would be to return the attack.
Behavior: Egotists also assert themselves, but unlike attackers, they may be subject experts.
Your Action: Show honest respect for their knowledge, but don’t become intimidated by it. Instead, capitalize on what they know by asking questions. Compliment them when they provide helpful information but make sure they know you are the leader.
Behavior: Sneaks take “potshots” and often use sarcasm as a weapon.
Your Action: Confront sneaks with direct questions and let them know you do not appreciate their sarcasm. Use positive reinforcement when possible to steer them toward becoming more of a team player.
Behavior: Victims see everything negatively. They act powerless and defeated, often whining about everyone and everything.
Your Action: Ask them for suggestions to improve the situation. Have them state the negatives and address each logically and positively.
Behavior: Negators are usually suspicious of these in authority and believe that their ways of doing things is the only way.
Your Action: Let negators use their negative “ammunition” in a group meeting, then let co-attenders express their views about possible solutions. They will usually try to “enlighten” negators that better solutions exist.
6. Super-Agreeable people
Behavior: Super-agreeable people have such a strong need to be liked that they do whatever you request at the expense of their own needs. They will over commit and often disappoint and frustrate everyone.
Your Action: Monitor assignment to make sure they are not overworked.
7. Unresponsive people
Behavior: Unresponsive people are the most difficult people to lead. They are seemingly impossible to draw out.
Your Action: Use open-ended questions that require more than a “Yes” or “No” answer. Wait for a response. Resist the urge to finish sentences for them. Follow up on actions assigned to them and give them assignments to present at future meetings.
With whom do you have or have had a conflict?
What is or was the essence of the conflict?
Describe the conflict resolution style which have been most effective in the conflict you identified?
Then review the strategies for each type of difficult person and summarize how you can more effectively approach each of these people in the future.
Does God guide? Yes. Most times, I believe, he guides in subtle ways, by feeding ideas into our minds, speaking through a nagging sensation of dissatisfaction, inspiring us to choose better than we otherwise would have done, bringing to the surface hidden dangers of temptation, and perhaps by rearranging certain circumstances.
…Sociologist Bronislaw Malinowski suggested a distinction between magic and religion. Magic, he said, is when we manipulate the deities so that they perform our wishes; religion is when we subject ourselves to the will of the deities. True guidance cannot resemble magic, a way for God to give us shortcuts and genie bottles. It must, rather, fall under Malinowski’s definition of religion. If so, it will occur in the context of a committed relationship between a Christian and God.
…A picture is being painted, for me, for all who are called the sons and daughters of God. Yet it does not take shape until enough time passes for me to stand up and look back on what colors and designs have been laid down. If I saw the pattern in advance, a sort of schema for “paint-by-numbers,” that would leave no room for faith. And, besides, God does not paint numbers .
(From Guidance: Making Sense of God’s Direction by Phillip Yancey)
When we follow God’s guidance, we please him. Although his plan may not always be clear to us, we must follow. How easily do you change direction? Are you willing to adapt to God’s will? Ask God to make his plans for you clear and to move you toward his will for the future.