My Thai client was a 38-year-old female working for 7 years as a senior Human Resource Manager. He approached me for an executive coaching session.
Objective: I want to communicate more effectively to my team throughout my daily work.
Desired Outcome: I want to be able to speak in a calming and peaceful manner where I am heard and my emotions are not triggered.
The work issue was that she performs two basic functions as the HR manager; overseeing department functions and managing employees, compensation and benefits, training and development, recruitment and selection.
Dialogue from the client:
“Sometimes it is overwhelming and it is just too much for one person. I need to communicate directly with my subordinates effectively and efficiently tasks, news worthy items and company changes in a professional manner. I feel the pressure to perform at the highest level and I become very demanding with a harsh tone and an aggressive way, which insults my subordinates, and they feel bad.
It is not my intention to bring upset or tears to them. But, sometimes it happens. I think fast and speak fast (not typical Thai), and sometimes it is misinterpreted in an aggressive way. When this issue arises, I feel I have to calm myself down first and then deal with my staff to see whom I unintentionally hurt”.
She wanted to change her behavior around how she spoke to her staff. She always starts with good intentions, but something happens midstream and her attitude changes immediately as if someone takes over. My client mentioned, “as if I were driving my car and all of a sudden someone takes the stirring wheel from me…I become off-centered, tense, stressed, worried and anxious.
Coaching, Insights & Solution
I asked my client to externalize what she felt inside when she lost control of the situation. What voice took over driving her car? Please best describe the energy around this behavior? In her discovery, she had the realization that unlocked some issues from her family dynamics. Growing up in her large family, she learnt to speak loudly to be heard and be pushy if you wanted to get things done. My coaching approach wasn’t therapy at all, but partnering with the client to uncover her blindspots and reveal new awarenesses. She understood where this ingrained behavior came from and she wants to eliminate it from her work/life environment.
Client made the choice to change her behavior from her learnings and reflections.
Become more empathic towards to my staff
Be more outgoing and positive with my staff and me
Stop ordering my staff around and delegate
Speaking with an open heart is acceptable
Acknowledging myself for my good work
Share thanks with my team
Have private face-to-face meeting to build rapport with my team