Posted tagged ‘coaching’

New articles on business in Jerusalem and mentoring

March 1, 2013

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Michael Horesh


When a business coach takes on “the analyser”

October 9, 2011

All mentors have listened to the scenario several times.

The client delivers a detailed and accurate analysis of their own commercial situation. The issues are exhaustively listed at great length. And, usually with a sense of triumph, they eventually finish their final sentence with a smile.

A smile? As if to say: “you see, I do know what I am talking about”.

What can the coach do? The facts cannot be disputed. The client is a very capable person. The delivery has been well thought out. All is fine…until the mentor remembers that the company is leaking money. Or that sales targets are not being met. Or the staff are revolting. Or…, well whatever it is, the client has got it very wrong.

I was once on the receiving end of all of this. Asked to comment on an aspect of my life, I ended up writing a very long report. I verified the contents with family members. I excitedly delivered my results. Then, to my surprise, I found myself mumbling: “so what?”

And that’s the point. “So what?”

Analyses are great if they deliver a solution. If not, they are effectively covering up the problem. They can be more dangerous than useless in the long run.

Only last week, I ended up on two separate occasions listening to very erudite people. And each time, within a few seconds, I guessed that the “sw” phrase would be my reaction. Bingo!

Actually, I felt a touch guilty. Because I am effectively popping their balloon of hope. True, because that balloon is filled with hot air, and very little else.

The clients have since returned to earth with a very nasty bump, but they are now better prepared to restart their commercial journey. As for the analyses, like all good things of taste, they need to be used in moderation, only.

Sea waves, rabbis and mentors

August 24, 2010

So my rabbi was trying to be “cool” and connect his weekly sermon to the holiday season.

It turns out that Rabbi Lior Engelman was at the seaside last week, when he started contemplating the waves. Yup – some of them roll in with “whites” on the top, an expression of anger. And Lior reflected how the way people deal with waves (and their anger) is similar to how we can deal with life. He pointed out 4 situations.

  1. Some people just let the waves hit them. They take in a mouth full of unwanted salt water and are often pushed back to the beach where they do not want to be. But they do not try for anything else. For whatever, they do not try to control the issue.
  2. In contrast, some people are clever and heroic. They watch the tall wave approach, judge it carefully and try to go through it head-on with minimal “fall out”.
  3. Most of us turn our backs on the wave. We try to ignore it or pretend that it is not so bad..if fact anything so long as it will leave us alone. The problem will pass us by, won’t it?
  4. And a few clever people say “please hold my hand and let’s jump this together”. They look for support.

Now, I could take this far and deep, but I will concentrate on the last point. So long as we are not talking about Hawaiin or Australian beaches, jumping waves can be fun. Yet amazingly not everyone likes to do it by themselves, and few of this group reach out for help.

In the world of sport, there is hardly a top personality that does not have their own trainer. However, when it comes to the world of commerce and business, few take on a mentor or consultant. 

Ask yourself why is that? And then contemplate how many companies you know could do so much better with an external person looking in, offering a few words of guidance. You never know; the added value generated might encourage the boss to give the staff an extra day off at the beach.