Effective Leadership Coaching: A Way out of Recession for Corporate Nigeria


Israel Diekola
As the economic recession bites harder and more corporate concerns desperately seek ways out of the protracted downturn, a corporate coaching expert and former management executive in leading Nigeria’s blue chip companies, Mrs. Joke Coker has proffered effective coaching of corporations top manpower as a major panacea for the tasking economic challenge.

During a recent teleconference with Business journalists, Mrs. Coker who is Nigeria’s Chief Executive Officer of Constellation (formerly INL), an international coaching, training and consulting firm with presence in the USA, affirmed that top level manpower must be on top of their game, by accessing world class leadership coaching to help them succeed especially in the current terrain.

“Now more than ever, business leaders, require the support of world class coaches to enhance their ability to Clarify, Focus and Execute the corporate vision and successfully navigate the current economic tempest.” As the year draws to a close and many organisations are busy preparing their plans for the new financial year, leaders must provide direction even in the midst of many uncertainties.”

Leadership coaching is a process where we essentially help individuals to clarify, focus and execute their goals. A leadership coach helps senior executives to be the best that they can, be it in the work environment or private life. On the need for leadership Coaching at a time like this, Mrs. Coker explained: ”The simple answer is that every executive needs somebody to talk to. Such Executives need a trustworthy, confidential listening ear that is non – judgmental, attached to the right skills, exposure and experience to help you think through the options in your mind and come up with the best possible choices in order to achieve better results or outcomes. That person is a coach.”

She went further: “Typically, the outcomes we achieve in work, life or play depends a lot on the choices made. Wouldn’t you like to learn how to make better choices and get better outcomes out of your interaction with others at yourself? Most of us are accustomed to the concept of coaching in this application to athletics/sports. If you take a moment to think about it, we are simply referring to superior performance.

High performing athletes achieve successful outcomes in their sport and thereby earn money, fame, and the type of positioning they seek in their community. You know, this concept of high performance is now available for all of us not only sportsmen. Leadership Coaching is a powerful tool that applies that concept of consistent high-performance in our Board rooms, our open plan office spaces and even in our personal lives.

“Essentially, what a leadership coach does is help leaders to achieve that high-performance in every aspect of their lives. Remember that we are all leaders in some context of life.

For example, a managing director leads the business initiatives of his organisation, a chairman leads the deliberations of a board meeting, a parent leads in the home, while a teacher leads in the class room environment. A president and other political leaders lead a country, making choices that affect people’s lives. The ability to achieve consistent high-performance in any one of these leadership areas is certainly desirable in my view and is in the interest of the greater good.”

Like journalists, all good coaches ask a lot of questions. We help bring up questions that help people unpeel their choices to the point of recognising intentions. Once you get to understand (clarify) the intention of your actions, you will be able to focus on that underlying intention while making other better choices in the future. This invariably leads to better outcomes.”

Harping further on why staff require coaching at a time like this, Mrs. Coker noted: “Workers in organisations need clarity and direction. Leaders face more challenges in the uncharted terrain fraught with uncertainties. As we prepare for the New Year, it’s not just about having the typical annual strategy session with your top management team. Something has to be different. Each organisation that wants to stand itself out has to draw out the best in their people. Tight headcount budgets require Directors touse fewer hands to achieve greater business results. This requires effectiveness and clarity.

“Everyone that wants to excel in this evolving socio-economic environment and ever shrinking global world needs a coach. Around the world large global companies in industries as diverse as Telecommunications, Technology, Oil and Gas and Banking currently have elaborate Corporate Coaching structures in place. Companies like Google, Microsoft, Coca-Cola, UPS and the CEOs thereof have embraced the concept of coaching for quite a while now.

“Individuals, who also wish to up their game, both in their professional and personal lives now need a coach more than ever. With the intensity of competition out there for the available scarce resources, individuals need to be at their best and put their best feet forward to stand out in the crowd.”

The Constellation CEO gave kudos to some companies in Nigeria who are visionary enough to quickly appreciate the fact that they need to consistently sharpen the skills of their manpower, particularly in times of economic downturn such as Nigeria has found itself.

“From our research, many of these companies have availed themselves of the services of world class coaching consultancy such as ours and they are the better for it. The participating top employees on completion of such training are excited about the quantum of knowledge acquired and new business skills impacted.

Knowledge is power. In times of recession, a company’s top manpower requires all the knowledge on global finance, global best practices, HR management, Advanced Negotiations etc. These and more are needed to steer a corporate entity on to consistent success.

Constellation’s International Nigeria specific offerings include: Executive Coaching, Advanced Negotiation Training, Sales Force NLP Training, NLP Practitioner License, Life Coaching, Employee Motivation, Self-mastery, NLP Masters Practitioner License, NLP Coach Training, Team Coaching and Coaching Foundations.

The coaching firm clientele base cut across Board Executives, Management Teams, Financial Institutions, H.R Practitioners, Companies with women’s Health workers, Sales Team, Experienced Trainers, Professional Associations, among others.

The Constellation boss posited that an added advantage of bringing Constellation to Nigeria at this critical point is its ability to help conserve scarce foreign exchange.
She noted that a number of corporations, especially the multinational, who are desirous of world class coaching often go offshore to avail themselves of such services with all its implications for the nation’s scarce foreign exchange. Now that Constellation has brought the same service to our shores, “such services can be paid for locally thereby conserving our hard earned foreign exchange, even while still acquiring the same skills and knowledge.”

To give Constellation Nigeria the stamp of global approval and international recognition, it deserves, the certificates for its NLP Practitioner License Programmes are signed by both the Lead Coach in Nigeria, Mrs. Coker, and by Dr. Richard Bandler, (the co-creator of NPL worldwide).

“This”, Mrs. Coker said “ensures that the qualifications received are international in nature and delivered to the highest global standards.”
For some management experts, Constellation unique selling point is the fact that consulting is driven by a Lead Coach who combines a world class coaching certifications acquired from one of the best coaching gurus in the world with years of successful experience in corporate management at the director level in both local and international organisations.

These include companies such as GTB, MTN, MoneyGram International and Constellation Coaching Group LLC USA.

Mrs. Coker, Constellation’s Lead Coach is a highly accomplished global Executive with more than 25 years experience in banking, finance, telecommunications and now Coaching. An International executive Coach, Mrs. Coker is also a thought leader in Team Coaching and a Licensed Master Practitioner of NLP and Licensed Trainer of International NLP Coaches.

“With such diverse and rich background,” remarked a management expert, “you can see why corporate Nigeria needs no longer to look beyond Nigeria for world class coaching. We have it here now.”