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ICF Michigan Newsletter
February 2013
Barb G Dear ICF Michigan Community,

February is a month that pays tribute to Presidents and homage to true love (Valentine's Day). So let's think a bit about the challenge of "leading from the heart". What exactly does that phrase mean and how does it relate to our profession of coaching?

I recently met with the leadership team of a company to review their composite 360 results and to define 2013 Leadership goals. The lowest score the team received on the survey was in relation to the competence of "Empathy". (The definition of Empathy in the survey was "demonstrating an active concern for people and their needs...") Interestingly enough, the team universally questioned the value of this competence in light of all their practical and ambitious goals. "Are we here to worry about feelings or to do a job and do it well?" was the question. The question was apt and generated a great conversation about the relationship between authentically connecting with people as people and providing them the direction and support they need to do the work. It caused us to get specific about what empathy is and what it looks like in the context of company culture and day to day interactions. Despite the initial critical reaction to the feedback, the team concluded that it really is in the best interest of the company and incumbent upon them as leaders to demonstrate authentic care for employees. This takes such simple forms as: eye contact and acknowledgement of the person speaking to you, not interrupting others so you can say your piece, smiling more and being a bit more relaxed and less intense. In other words, engaging the heart in the work of leading others.

Here's the Coaching Question for this month:

In your work as coach, what methods (or practices) have you found helpful in developing empathy?

If you choose to share your thoughts and insights with the rest of us, please simply follow these guidelines:

  1. Submit 1-2 sentences (only) that respond to the Question and sheds light on the subject
  2. Your name, company name and years of coaching experience
  3. Send your response to support@icfmichigan.org

While it won't be possible to post all of your contributions, a selection of your thoughts will be published in the following month's newsletter.

I want to thank those of you who responded to January's Coaching Question that kicked off ICF MI 2013 with the theme of "Engagement". The question was:
What motivates you (or your clients) to become engaged in anything?

Here are 2 responses from ICF MI coaches:

For both my clients and myself, I find that visualizing the desired outcome, beginning with the end in mind, promotes engagement. Using your example, envision that the game has been won and the action steps (last action first) used to win the game, are identified. - Elaine Demps

I am motivated to engage with anyone (or anything)who shares my vision or whose values are in alignment with mine. When the same answer to the question "What's Important?" drives collaborators, engagement happens naturally. - Therese Marie

Your Board is highly engaged in making 2013 a year that brings added value to ICF MI members. Please be sure to check out upcoming events and News & Notes below. We look forward to your participation!

Warm Regards,

Barb Grigsby

2013 ICF Michigan President




The ICF Michigan Training & Education Committee is soliciting proposals from coaches to conduct 1-1.5 hr. tele-classes as a part of a proposed ICF Michigan tele-class program. The goal is to have volunteer presenters provide a learning experience that would allow for the awarding of Core Competency or Resource Development continuing education credits (CCEU's) fromICF Michigan and recognized by the ICF.

If you are interested, please email support@icfmichigan.org and ask to receive a template document to use as well as further instructions.

ICF Michigan Coaches
Come and join us for Collaborative CoachingConversations!
Informal gatherings allowingan opportunity for collaborative coaching conversations around the substantive issues of building a successful coaching business.

Detroit Area: 2nd Friday of the month - 8:30 AM -The Goldfish Tea Cafe at 117 West 4th Street in Downtown Royal Oak- Contact: Susanne Cordes-Hoelterhoff for more information - sch.coaching@gmail.com

AnnArbor Area:
3rd Friday of the month - 9:00 AM -Moonwinks Cafe,5151 Plymouth Road, Ann Arbor.Contact: Deb Nystrom -DebNystrom@Reveln.com

Lansing Area: 2nd Wednesday of the month - 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM at the Kellogg Center in East Lansing for dinner in the State room. For inquiries, please contact Stephanie Maat at stephaniemaat@yahoo.com

West Michigan TeleCafe': 3rd Friday of the month - 9:00 AM - Conference call information: 218-339-4600 PIN: 293548#. If you would like to be added to the West Michigan coaches distribution list please e-mail Dr. Lori Kerlinat lkerlin@progressive-dev.com.