My Voice

Your Life Experience = Your Leadership Voice

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  • Tuesday, June 03, 2014
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  • Paul Larsen


Recently I was asked:

“How does my life experience prepare me to be an Executive Coach?”

The question should be:

“How can my life experience NOT prepare me to be an Executive Coach?”

In my role as a performance coach, I partner with leaders and teams within organizations to find their Leadership VOICE…which we identify as their unique Values, Outcomes, Influence, Courage and Expression.

To me, it would be impossible to be a successful coach of leaders and not use “life” as our curriculum in which to draw our experiences and lessons from. And while, through our coaching partnership, we always remain focused on the opportunities facing the leaders of today, everything I know and apply as an Executive Coach has manifested directly from my whole life experience:

The mistakes I have made. The successes I have had. My good decisions. My poor decisions. My judgments. My perceptions. My values. My goals. My courage. My history. My family. My friends. My relationships. My journeys. My work. My stage. My feelings. My exclamations. My creativity. My energy. My style. My questions. My answers. My conversations with others…my conversations with myself. My image….my mirror. My communities.

My losses. My gains. My anxieties. My happiness. My generosity. My tantrums. My sadness. My disappointments. My lightness. My darkness. My dreams. My nightmares. My recognition. My opinions. My talk. My action. My inaction. My probing. My digging. My bridging. My facilitating. My training. My participation. My attending. My sleeping. My driving. My flying. My cruising.

My follies. My seriousness. My extroversion. My introversion. My confidence. My feelings of inadequacies. My bullies. My saviors. My lovers. My enemies. My thoughts. My walks. My talks. My pains. My chaos. My confusions. My plans. My planning. My strategies. My results. My actions. My wounds. My passions. My influences. My influencers. My mentors. My teachers. My students. My clients. My parents. My siblings.

My brand. My presence. My expression. My voice. My thirsts. My hungers. My satisfactions. My intentions. My starts. My stops. My continues. My shape. My body. My choices. My journey. My career. My leadership. My management. My strategies. My teams. My peers. My managers. My colleagues. My corporate world. My work. My roles. My positions. My projects. My wins. My losses. My hires. My fires. My performance.

My discipline. My procrastination. My arrogance. My humbleness. My vulnerabilities. My observations. My anger. My discouragements. My behaviors. My hearing. My seeing. My yelling. My breathing. My silence. My listening. My humor. My favoritism. My enlightenments. My enticements. My control. My distrust. My trust. My dishonesty. My honesty. My spending. My taking. My generosity. My giving. My humanness…


And in my role as an Executive Coach, we replace the “My” with “Your”…


So leaders, what has your life taught you?


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