My Early Career

My career journey began as a software engineer, navigating the intricacies of coding and programming. As I honed my technical skills, I yearned to contribute to projects in a more holistic manner. My career trajectory evolved as I transitioned into project management.

Project management exposed me to the complexities of team dynamics and interpersonal relationships. Motivating a diverse team, mediating conflicts, and aligning individual goals with project objectives became integral aspects of my role. It was during this phase that I stumbled upon the concept of coaching, initially as a tool to enhance team performance.

Coaching, as I discovered, is not merely a set of techniques; it is a transformative approach to personal and professional development through thought-provoking conversations, active listening, and a commitment to fostering self-awareness. The more I delved into coaching, the more I realized its profound implications for both individuals and organizations.

Integrating Coaching

Armed with newfound knowledge and skills, I began to integrate coaching into my project management approach. This shift in mindset proved to be a game-changer.

  • Coaching encouraged a more collaborative and empowering leadership style. Instead of providing solutions, I started asking questions that prompted team members to reflect on their challenges and devise their own solutions.
  • Coaching not only fostered a sense of ownership but also unleashed creative problem-solving capabilities within the team.
  • Coaching became a tool for building stronger interpersonal relationships. The result was a more motivated and cohesive team, with each member feeling valued and understood.

Coaching Change My Life 

The integration of coaching into my leadership style began to show a ripple effect.

  1. Impact on Project ResultsĀ 

    Project outcomes began to reflect a positive shift. Team members were not only meeting deadlines but also surpassing them, and the quality of work exhibited a notable improvement.

    One notable project stood out. Faced with a tight deadline and complex requirements, the team was overwhelmed. Instead of resorting to traditional managerial directives, I conducted a series of coaching sessions to unpack the challenges and explore potential solutions collaboratively. The result was not only a successful project delivery but also a team that grew stronger through the shared experience of overcoming challenges.

    2. Impact on My Leadership

    I noticed a parallel evolution in my own leadership style. The traditional hierarchical model of leadership, characterized by top-down decision-making, gave way to a more inclusive and participatory approach. I found a tool that allowed me to lead with empathy and authenticity.  Furthermore, coaching served as a catalyst for my continuous improvement. Through regular feedback sessions and coaching conversations, I identified areas for my own growth and development as a leader.

    3. Impact Beyond My Workplace

    Coaching became a lens through which I viewed challenges and opportunities, both within and outside the professional realm. The power of thoughtful questioning, active listening, and fostering self-awareness became guiding principles in my interactions with friends and family. In the context of personal relationships, coaching principles became a guiding compass, enhancing communication and understanding. The alignment in my personal and professional growth contributed to a more balanced and fulfilling life.

    4. Impact on My Contribution to the Community

    Beyond my immediate circle, the effect of coaching manifested in unexpected ways. In community engagement and volunteer initiatives, coaching principles served as a bridge for effective collaboration. The principles of empowerment and growth extend beyond the confines of individual coaching, creating a positive ripple throughout various spheres of influence. In my ongoing quest for personal excellence and fulfilment, I decided to pursue ICF coaching certification course with Corporate Coach Academy (CCA) in Malaysia, which is the Top 3 ICF Coaching School in the world. In retrospect, my journey from software engineer to project manager and, ultimately, to a coaching-oriented leader has been a remarkable odyssey.

    Written by:
    Celine Grace James
    Certified Professional Coach (CPC)
    Delivery Manager, Roche Services (Asia Pacific) Sdn Bhd

    Corporate Coach Academy (CCA) has groomed thousands of global coaches since 2003. It offers four coaching programs accredited by International Coaching Federation (ICF); Certified Associate Coach, Certified Professional Coach, Certified Master Coach and Group & Team Coaching.

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