Executive leadership has been a moving target in recent years. There's an old profit-at-any-cost consciousness that is widely considered the only "reality" there is and it has been taught at all the big MBA programs as the norm. Consequently, most executive mentoring has relied on lessons learned in a paradigm that's crumbling because it has set new benchmarks on the scale of failure.
What's emerging is a new definition of executive leadership - a new consciousness with regard to who leaders need to be in order to reach excellence. In fact, excellence itself is being redefined in the field of coaching executives. No longer is it enough to just produce healthy profits. There is a growing sensibility about how profits are earned - about what happened to and among all the people who are stakeholders and about what price the Earth paid for profits made.
While executive leadership training has not kept up with the evolution of leadership concepts, there are excellent leadership programs and executive management training that takes executive business coaching to the next level. CEO coaching can no longer rely on standardized executive leadership training. We know that in order to develop the most robust business, executive coaching has to take a deeper cut. Executive leadership programs that create the necessary transformation take the time to drill down to core values in order to raise up true vision and the pathway toward realizing it.
Coaches are a mixed bag - they come out of an uncommonly wide variey of backgrounds. You're the expert in your business - there's no evidence that a coach who shares your expertise is going to get your anywhere. Find someone who has an uncommon depth and breadth of experience and knowledge because that's what it takes to develop vision and the wherewithal to turn your vision to reality.
Don't settle for executive business coaching that's formulaic - just because it's been done the same way in a lot places doesn't mean it's the right executive leadership program for you. Coaching executives is like coaching Olympians - there's no singular formula for getting to the gold. It's a uniquely individual process that combines what comes from the best executive coaching courses with the experience and "nose" of a seasoned success professional who has been coaching executives in many sectors over many years.
In these days of downsizing, many newly jobless people are offering executive coaching services without ever having gone through executive coaching training. In fact, anyone can put up a shingle, whether or not they even take an executive coaching course, and call themselves a coach. If they have the natural "nose" for identifying core issues and reaching solutions they can be pretty good. If they sat in a similar chair you sit in, it can help but it can also limit their own scope for truly effective business executive coaching. But if the coach, him/herself has experience with the deep diving necessary for truly meaningful transformation and development, you have a much better shot at getting the work done that supports great leadership.