In the wake of the financial crisis the media spotlight has been increasingly on unethical behaviour in organisations. We’ve seen trust in leaders unravel and a crisis of confidence in institutions of all shapes and sizes. Society is calling for more responsible leadership and demanding that companies and individuals act with integrity.
There has never been a better time to build a stronger, profitable business by being socially and environmentally responsible. A competitive edge and long term success depend on successful relationships; relationships that build loyalty and customer satisfaction, reputation, employee engagement and community trust. It takes a shift of mindset to achieve this; a way of thinking where business decisions consider the interests of the shareholders alongside all the other stakeholders, such as workers, clients, suppliers, the environment, the community and future generations. But making changes is easier said than done, working life can be like running on a treadmill especially in a challenging economic climate.
This is where coaching can help businesses to thrive. Coaching has seen phenomenal growth in popularity and prestige especially in management and leadership development. But up until now most providers of training for coaches focus almost exclusively on individual goals and performance, rather than developing coaches who are committed to inspiring and supporting ethical leadership, or have the skills or depth and breadth of perspective to help clients work effectively within wider networks of relationships.
I believe coaching can play a much more dynamic role in putting integrity, values and emotional intelligence at the heart of business. Helping a leader or manager to become more responsible isn’t about perfection it’s about extending our habitual ‘me’ perspective and making wise decisions that include the wider ‘we’. It’s about making choices to create conditions in which individuals and organisations can flourish. It’s about choosing to make a difference.