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Coaching in the Eye of the Storm

A Gingold International Journal of Coaching in Organizations 2009

The author, who has spent the last ten years coaching senior executives in the financial services area, shares insights on what it was like to observe firsthand how leaders reacted when most of what they thought was sacrosanct and within their control came crashing down around their ears. In what became a brighter and more expansive spotlight, their reactions and behaviors were watched not only by those inside the walls of the firms they managed, but even more extensively by an angry and critical world at large. Many of the behaviors that emerged are discussed and critiqued. In this time of turmoil and fear, the challenges and opportunities for a coach to step up and provide the kind of guidance and support were never more in evidence, and examples of how that was addressed are reviewed and analyzed. Now that the worst seems to be over, and a semblance of a recovery is beginning to materialize, what are some of the lessons that have been learned, and what are the potential hazards that leaders will still need to anticipate and deal with? It was a time for learning as well as hurting, and only time will tell us who has really been listening and learning.

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