Stephen Gribben joined me in this podcast episode to discuss his career of over 30 years as an executive coach. He has coached numerous C-Level executives and explains how, as a new coach, you can win new clients; how do you position yourself and of course, how do you become more successful as a person and C-Level executive. He has a background in psychology and Emotional Intelligence. His two main fascinations are people and business. One of his revelations was that when coaching, he got paid for doing something he enjoyed, which made him passionate about executive coaching.
Stephen defines success as being who you are, and doing what you want. He says that’s the stage when you do things on purpose and you find a drive and motivation that he describes as success. He uses an analogy that there are weddings and marriages. Weddings are events, but the long term goal are the marriages. We discuss whether money means success, and he says that money is never enough for people who earn more and more, and it is a by-product of achievement.
Whenever coaching someone, you must find out how their client is defining their success, from a coaching session or in life. He describes how clients light up, and I have to agree, when speaking to C-Level executives, and their eyes light up and you can see their passion, you know you are doing a good job.
As a bestselling author of Key Coaching Principles, over 24,000 hours of professional coaching, Stephen doesn’t define himself as an author but a hard working coach who also is an author. He discusses his struggles to write the book until he defined the right reasons, the right why, and he then finished it very quickly. This is a story of success in itself.
Talking about his upbringing from a broken home, he describes one of his many models he developed over the years: You have return on investment (ROI) on the vertical axis and self-confidence on the horizontal one; denial is the bottom box, then moving into fight; the third box is the ‘use’ box, where he started believing that he will be successful because of what happened to him in the past. So instead of resisting experience, you are channeling it, reframing it and using it for success. This in itself is a free coaching session for executive, non executives and CEOs, so listen in how he explains that transition. It is a great model, defining a positive purpose.
Emotional Intelligence, EQ, for Stephen is a constant, something that is always there. Right emotions, right situation, towards the desired outcome. We discuss Conversational Intelligence, and again, it is all about connecting to your C-Level first, before you can influence. I enjoyed Stephen being very practical and down to earth in terms of the basics of coaching. The conversation leads to us discussing a lot of tools we can use with our executive clients.
We then discuss how to build a coaching business with the challenge that nowadays there are many people who are qualified to be coaches, yet they don’t have the experience to do it well. People are buying and committing to you being their coach, when you inspire them and listen to them; that decision is made face to face, not face too many. On the back of my recent videos we speak about the best practise for marketing for coaches, and it is all about meeting with the right people, and discussing the ‘end in mind’, defining the goal!
I also ask Stephen how to motivate a football team of 10 year olds. His advice was brilliant, and it did work! He defines being an expert means to consistently producing good results, researching your topic, being a role model; you approach things from a coaching perspective and you live and breathe it. And making a living from coaching leads it to be a profession.
I absolutely enjoyed the conversation with Stephen which was super great, and I am confident you will enjoy the chat too; but also the advice on becoming a coach. He is launching his own academy soon, and you can find out more about him on his website or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Volker Ballueder is an executive and productivity coach, and works with executives, C-Level, boards, and leadership teams in order to evaluate strategies, improve performance and get the most out of their people. For more information please visit Ballueder Partners’ website, or contact him on Linkedin. He hosts this podcast about success and published a best selling book on Principles for Success. Volker is a also qualified meditation and mindfulness trainer.