A mid-stage fintech startup was growing quickly. They recognized that managers were a lynchpin to organizational success, but often lacked the experience to strategically guide the business and effectively lead teams. Their aim was to upskill a cohort of emerging leaders.
To tackle their needs, we developed a two-fold approach: a coaching program that would allow for individual attention while simultaneously developing a group of next-level leaders at scale.
How We Did It
We strove to maximize professional development, impact, and participation — while acknowledging the benefits of economies of scale. We created a cohort coaching program in which leaders were matched with an experienced executive coach to define and advance individual professional goals.
The coaching sessions focused on moving toward these stated goals. By asking powerful and sometimes challenging questions, the coach helped the leader to explore and expand on their own challenges. The role of the coach was to help the leader discover their own path while getting an instructive outside perspective.
Each coach brings a different perspective and set of tools for the leader to use. They range from simple journaling to standard business tools and sometimes the pair co-created their own new methods that matched the goals and styles of the leader.
Coaches concurrently worked with multiple managers. In the process, they identified areas that were preventing managers from stepping into broader leadership roles. Leaders learned how to improve presence, tackle communications challenges, and overcome obstacles to achieving business goals.
Managers had the benefit of individualized coaching. But our client won out too: the company benefited from identifying areas to address that would have maximum impact on these leaders and the business.
The teams saw a range of benefits as well. Feedback told us that the work yielded greater clarity of purpose and direction. This allowed teams to work faster and more collaboratively, while freeing managers to focus more strategically.
By sharing these themes with leadership, our client gained a better understanding of the personal and organizational challenges facing leaders at the manager level.