Who’s in your inner team? Are you choosing the best team members for your coaching practice?
Inside each of us are many different players – our inner team. It’s a rare individual that is exactly the same in every environment with every type of person. In fact, you could argue that life would be pretty boring if we were. Certainly as a coach it might limit your flexibility as to the ‘type’ of individual you might be best able to work with. Getting to know who’s in your team can be really powerful and offers you greater choice. Throughout your life so far you’ll have met most of your inner team, you just may not have thought about them in this way before. You may have thought about your personality and how you are in different environments with different people, but just not considered those personality traits as something you have any control over, or as a team you can call upon consciously.
A common time when the inner team becomes clear is when we are saying “On one hand, I want to do x, and on the other I want to do y.” It may be that the really social part of you wants to go to that networking event, but the nurturing part wants to head home to family. If you were one dimensional, life would be rather flat. Knowing the characters in your team that you’ve got available, all the different sides of your personality, gives you greater choice and makes your behaviour conscious. For your coaching practice, deciding who on your team to send to that networking event could make the difference between making a new connection or sale – or not. Equally you may have other parts of you, like the inner guru for instance, that could be even better to put at the lead of the team.
If, in a work environment, you were tasked with pulling together the best co-workers to deliver on a project, the first thing you’re going to need to do is know who you’ve got to choose from. Then you’ll want to know more about them, things like their strengths and weaknesses, their motivations and drivers as well as their needs and wants. To get the best mix for the team you’d need to get to know them well. This is exactly the same with our inner team – it’s just we’ve never been sent on a course to learn about managing our own personalities and facets!
Whether you want to grow your coaching practice, make it more targeted to a particular industry, or do more in depth work with clients, it’s a useful to begin consciously choosing who you send into key conversations and meetings. Here’s a fun exercise that can start you down the road of better inner team management.
Who’s on your team?
Have fun with this exercise. Take yourself to an environment where you can allow your mind to wander. It could be the local park, the ocean, in your garden, or a quiet spot at work. Wherever it is, make certain to relax and enjoy the exploration:
Once you’ve got your sub-personalities on paper, you now have greater knowledge of who’s on your team. Now you can pair them up, choose specific characters for certain situations, or simply enjoy knowing they are there. Whatever you choose to do, you have a greater self awareness and that means more choices.
Executive coach Sarah Lane is the author of ‘Choices: from confusion to clarity’, which aims to support business owners and leaders with supporting their people in creating the careers and lives they want. For more information about Sarah Lane, visit http://www.coachinglane.co.uk/.