Archives for category: Executive Coaching

This week we’ve been talking about gratitude. Part of the magic of gratitude is that it creates a direct path to acceptance. And acceptance is one of the most important steps in achieving harmony with the world abound you. I thought it was so important, it’s the first thing addressed in my book (co-authored with Ann Depta) “A Coaching Alphabet.”


Accept them for who they are. Before you start coaching your employees, it’s important to accept them for who they are. Remember they are not wired the same way you are, and thus, they need to be coached in a way that works for them, not you.

Check out the book, available at!

With the release of my new book, I’ve been thinking about, and frequently discussing coaching, what it means to be a successful coach and what it means to be successfully coached. While researching business coaching, information on athletic coaching will often come up, though when examined, the advice could just as easily apply to either type of coaching. See for yourself…

vinveandbarttstarr.jpg bart starr and vince lombardi

Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work. – Vince Lombardi

It is a fine thing to have ability, but the ability to discover ability in others is the true test.  – Lou Holtz

Happiness begins where selfishness ends. – John Wooden

Finding good players is easy. Getting them to play as a team is another story. – Casey Stengel

The secret is to work less as individuals and more as a team. As a coach, I play not my eleven best, but my best eleven. – Knute Rockne

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. – Darrell Royal

What are some of the truths you’ve come to understand about coaching? About teamwork?

From my book with Ann Depta, “A Coaching Alphabet:”

“M is for Mirroring: Learn to match the body language of a person when you are coaching. This creates rapport, which will help your employees be more comfortable in a coaching session.”

This concept is also known as “matching and pacing,” and its usefulness goes far beyond coaching situations. It allows you better footing to communicate with just about anyone in just about any situation.

Have you ever felt that someone just “isn’t meeting you where you are?” Or they just don’t seem to be listening, or for some reason you can’t put your finger on, they don’t seem to be relating to you. This could be all about body language, energy and pacing.

Try to remember this next time you’re dealing with someone – how can you mirror their body language? Match their pace and energy. Does it help your communication? Does it set them at ease? Does it set YOU at ease?

Coaching, like any such endeavor, can be complicated. One of the reasons I’m thrilled about our new book is that it simplifies many of the basics of a complex system. To learn more, check it out on Amazon!

Be well.

I’m delighted and humbled by this wonderful testimonial for my new book with Ann Depta, “A Coaching Alphabet.”
“A Coaching Alphabet is a very useful and easy to use tool, particularly for managers that are new to coaching in the workplace.  It contains the fundamental principles we all need to become successful coaches, but in a simple, bite size format.  A Coaching Alphabet makes coaching approachable for the reader by emphasizing basic concepts and productive behaviors rather than lofty techniques and jargon.  I’ve even found it to be a useful tool for myself and my senior managers as we seek to refresh our skills and boost coaching effectiveness.  Our company now plans to incorporate A Coaching Alphabet into our Leadership Development program.”
Jim Perry
SVP – Retail Banking Manager
Peoples Bank

Ann Depta founded Meridian Consulting Group, an executive coaching business, two decades ago. She’s an amazing, energetic woman and a good friend. We have worked together frequently, primarily through her business.

Between the two of us, we’ve been coaching for 45 years in a variety of settings:  private, corporate, not for profit, large and small.  Along the way we have coached the most seasoned managers to the ones who have just been promoted into management positions.  These managers express frustration with the same issues:  “what do you say and how do you say it when you’re trying to get the best out of people and you don’t know how to get them there?”

Increasingly in today’s workforce, people who are coaching are working managers and doing their best to attain their own aggressive goals while managing the work of others.  There are fewer resources and more to get done in any given day.  Additionally, managers are working across geographical distances, across generational boundaries and in organizations that are changing at the speed of light.  What generally gets sacrificed is coaching time.  Most managers we’ve coached have the best of intentions – to be that coach that they’ve appreciated along the way, but how do you find coaching time and how do you use it?

We set out to provide a “quick reference guide” to the 26 principles we found the most thematic in our work.  To this end, we wrote “A Coaching Alphabet.”

Coaching is paradoxically as easy as it sounds and as hard as it sounds:  easy in that the principles contained in this book are simple and straightforward; and hard in that it takes time to connect with people, perhaps even more when the stakes are so high.

Our goal is to make the lives of managers easier and to give them a tool that is useful, relevant, applicable, and “real time”.   Studies continue to support the fact that happy and productive employees have one thing in common, regardless of the organizational setting:  they report having managers who spend time with them and communicate clearly what needs to be done and that it matters.

Good coaching is at the heart of what helps organizations run effectively and providing a satisfied and engaged workforce.

A Coaching Alphabet by Ann Depta and Susan Hewitt is now available at