One Minute Coaching: A leaders guide to overcome performance fear.

Good morning chief, this afternoon I have a client call and a training at the same time. What should I do?  

Sorry boss, I won’t be able to finish the presentation before the deadline, can you help me?

Are you familiar with these remarks of the people you work with? If so, this article may provide you with the necessary information to practically never have to deal with these moments again.

Over the past two decades, I have been coaching and training leaders from diverse industries. I have been able to help many of them overcome a common problem by applying the principles I developed as a former professional sports coach. During one-minute time-outs in matches, I focused on the players’ mental state, as it was the key element in winning the match.

Imagine having the equivalent of this one minute coaching as a leader, where your teammembers take full responsibility for their work and start winning matches.

One of the chiefs I spoke to recently said: ‘From the moment I gave them these tangible results and they agreed to commit to them, their attention shifted. In fact it now seems very normal for them to deliver the results they feel responsible for’.

But there’s more to this then simply have their focus shifted. Once someone feels fully responsible it’s clear another stumbling block in the winning process appears: performance fear. It’s human nature to avoid fear. That pit in the stomach which takes up headspace and lead to negative self-talk, such as: ‘Am I good enough?’ ‘What if I’m unable to achieve the required results?’ ‘What will happen with me if my boss thinks I’m not fit for the job?’

Crucial question: How to coach fear in such a way that the team member goes on pursuing their victory? My suggestion is that you take the one minute time-out strategy as a starting point and use the do’s and don’ts I’ve summed up below to crumble their fear and build up their resilience.

The DO’s, how to crumble the fear one minute at a time?
Teach your teammembers to take small step actions and use external parameters as a measurement of personal growth.
Teach teammembers to embrace their fear. Know that if being exposed to results, fear arises. Learn them that feeling discomfort is a good sign, this will raise their resilience.
Use ‘you and I’ instead of ‘we’. By changing the word ‘we’ in ‘you and I’- you help your team member to take ownership for their own mental state.
Teach your teammembers not to believe their own excuses. Mirror them and make them aware that there is always a reason why things didn’t work out.
Teach your teammembers to detach from their past experiences. Let them invent a new self.
Teach your teammembers to be autonomous in their pursuit of happiness. So, challenge them to step out of the warm bath of a cozy team and create the guts to be isolated now and then.
What are the DON’TS in one-minute coaching?
Don’t try to investigate what the reason of the fear is. By asking ‘What is the reason of your fear?’ you amplify the fear by focusing to much on it.
Don’t try to take the fear away by saying ‘You don’t need to worry about it. That isn’t necessary’. Learn them that fear is part of the learning process.
Don’t believe the excuses your people tend to make up once they’re stuck in their fear. ‘I wasn’t able to call the customer. There were too many other things to do’.
Don’t talk about the excuse itself. ‘When do you have time to call the customer?’
Don’t ignore the fear, by simple stating that it isn’t there. ‘This isn’t fear at all. I just have to do this’.

These brief moments may lead to greater motivation, productivity, and job satisfaction. Of course you will have some longer one-on-ones now and then. However, if you frequently use your one minute moments of coaching it will save you a lot of time for strategical topics. I recommend trying this approach for a month and let me know if you find it helpful.

One Minute Coaching
Victor Mion

#mental resilience #performance #fear #oneminutecoaching

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