In their recent Training Unleashed podcast, Evan Hackel and his guest Steve Lishansky jumped right into a discussion of a question that should be on the mind of every effective leader . . .

How can the results of coaches be maximized?

You will hear big and important ideas from the first moment until the last when you watch. Until you do, we want to share some excerpts of their talk.

Why Do Companies Hire Coaches?

 Evan asked Steve, “Why do companies want to bring in coaches? Why can’t they just figure it all out themselves?”

Steve answered, “Well, that would be wonderful if we could do that. But Einstein said that great genius often comes with great limitations. In my experience the smartest, the best, the most successful are always challenging themselves to get better.”

A Powerful Tool Steve Created to Help Top Performers Get Even Better

“I created something I call the Nonfinancial Balance Sheet because if you look at anybody, even the highest performers, you will see that there are assets, capabilities, resources – but there are also limitations . . . So let’s get really clear and focused and understand each other. What are our assets? What are our liabilities as an individual, as a team? When I work with leaders, I say, let’s leverage the assets, let’s limit and mitigate the liabilities, so we can zoom beyond what most people are used to experiencing.”

Why One of the Most Common Approaches to Coaching Is Wrong

Steve and Evan both agreed that most companies bring in a coach when someone is underperforming. And that coach is supposed to correct the problem.

One example? Steve said, “You’ve got a good performer, but he’s a pain in the butt. How do you save him before you have to fire him? That kind of coaching is remediation. I don’t do that. I only do the other kind of coaching, which is what I call developmental coaching. It answers the questions of how do you take your best, most talented, highest potential, highest achieving people and help them even do better?

“That’s your best application of coaching. I’ve always said to every corporation, investing in your best gives the greatest return on investment.”

A Lesson in Excellence from NBA Great Larry Bird

Since both Evan and Steve are from New England, they started to talk about Larry Bird, one of the greatest basketball players to ever wear a Celtics jersey. After the Celtics won the championship in 1986, Larry Bird was named the MVP of the series.

“I heard a reporter ask Larry what he was going to do after winning that championship,” Steve said. “I thought he was going to say that he was going back to Indiana to drink beer. But no, Larry said, `I am going to Indiana to practice. I am going to shoot hoops.’

“I’ll never forget that moment. That’s mastery. That’s excellence personified. That’s what the best of the best are always thinking. So even if you are the best of the best, you can always get better.”

The Meaning of Training and Coaching

“I look at coaching as about being more effective,” Steve summed up. “You might have the skills, you might have the knowledge, but you might not have the ability to effectuate that within an organization the way you would like. You can’t, without coaching. I know that’s what coaching did for me.”

A Special Offer from Steve Lishansky 

To thank the Training Unleashed community for watching, Steve is offering a chance to read the first section of his new book Leadership Starts Here. CLICK HERE to learn more.

“And if people want more, they can always have more!” Steve says. “You can find me at I am happy to answer any questions for any member of your audience.”

About Our Guest Steve Lishansky

Steve Lishansky is a Senior Executive Coach with Executive Coaching Network, Inc. (EXCN). He brings his clients extensive real-world experience and insight from 18 years as a corporate executive and entrepreneur, and more than two decades as a coach, consultant, and facilitator to the C-Suite, leaders, and leadership teams from over 40 countries.

Steve brings his clients extensive experience from years of hands-on experience as a CEO, and coaching and consulting to C-level leaders from many industries and countries dealing with all manner of issues, opportunities, and challenges. Bringing together that level of insight and experience with his deep study of neuroscience, human dynamics, neuro-linguistic programming, and the art and science of communications, he works with clients to find ways to access their strengths and capabilities faster, deal with limitations more effectively, and engage with others far more successfully. He also helps clients gain deeper insights into themselves as one of the most powerful vehicles for delivering more and better results for their organization.

Steve’s books include The Ultimate Sales Revolution and Leadership Starts Here.