Season 1 | episode 5
Welcome to the Coaching Studio Podcast
This podcast features fun, lively conversations with masterful coaches who are creating an impact. Get to know them, their journey into coaching, and discover what wisdom they would offer you about being a better coach.
the Coaching Studio Guest
I am very excited to welcome Jane Adshead Grant, MCC to the Coaching Studio.
- Host: Lyssa deHart, LICSW, MCC
- Music: Frolic by Harrison Amer
- Production Editing: Lyssa deHart
- Social Media and Communications: Michele Logan
About This Episode
Read this episode of the Coaching Studio Podcast:
|Lyssa deHart||Welcome, I’m your host, Lyssa deHart and I am so privileged today to introduce Jane Adshead-Grant. Jane, welcome to the show. I’m really glad to have you here.|
|Jane Adshead-Grant||Thank you for inviting me, thrilled to be here with you and your listeners.|
I’m very happy to have you. I want to read Jane’s bio really quickly. Um, Jane’s purpose is in creating the environment and leadership that enables growth and fulfillment. She does this through listening, listening to ignite the best thinking ideas and solutions, and others in her executive coach and facilitator roles. She supports individuals and teams to develop person-centric leadership and cultures where everybody matters, generating people and business growth in a space of harmony. Jane is an MCC and a mentor coach with the ICF. And an emerging faculty member with time to think Jane has over 30 years of experience with people-focused roles in professional and financial services.
Jane’s experience includes being the director of her own coaching practice as well as HR executives and HR executive within a within European and U. S. Investment banks and international law firms where she has been responsible for strategy and implementation of resourcing and development of people across the front line of business James work is underpinned with postgraduate diplomas and human resource management and psychological coaching. So again Jane welcome so much. I was really excited by your book.
And Janes’ book is, Are You Listening, or Just Waiting to Speak? – The secret to propelling your business relationships. And I want to read a little quote that I thought was so useful about your book. “This little book had a big impact on me. It got me thinking more deeply about how I listen and left me clearer about the habits and assumptions that get in my way. It also got me noticing how well others listen to me, ironically it made me more understanding of other people’s barriers. The author packs a lot in. She doesn’t just describe what good listening looks like. She says why it matters and what gets in the way. Great for leaders, Workmates, parents, partners or anyone. “
So Jane. What a great book review of your book and what a fascinating thing. Right? This idea of listening. So it really brings me really to my first question because it’s so much of what coaching is. But what brought you into coaching?
Mm Oh wow. Um so you know when I look back on my journey into coaching, it wasn’t something that was proactive to be honest, it was I’ve spent 15 years in the corporate environment as you kindly readout in my bio, and Back in the year 2000, just as the dot. com bubble burst and collapsed, so did the desk in my back and I found myself Lyssa, flat on the floor of the boardroom wondering whether anybody would come and help me quite frankly get up.
Um and generously one of the team members at the time I was working there did and help me out. And that experience led me to some real deep thinking about the leadership, leadership in the organization I’d worked in and actually more broadly leadership in the organizations um and cultures I was working within and it wasn’t until later did I discern that actually what I wanted to do was to really help people think about their leadership in a way that would not leave people flat on the floor on the boardroom. I’m not proud of that experience. It was through lack of self-care and just continuing to work super long hours.
And um, and so, and what I realized was, you know, what was, what were the leaders paying attention to? And the people around them during this particularly challenging time of going through a merger and moving on. And so, um, what got me into coaching is, you know, that that was a very, that moment in my life was just as, in fact, I began to leave the corporate environment, um, not just because of that experience, we were being acquired and I didn’t want to go to the organization, we were being acquired by, and at that same time I, or just after that I fell pregnant. And I was very blessed, you know, to then become a mom. And seven months later it was my choice and decision to be made about what I was going to do next. And so one thing I knew was that I wanted to remain in a people-focused role.
And one thing I knew was that I wanted to help individuals decide the kind of leader they wanted to become. And so I moved into the transition first of all, of becoming an outplacement consultant. And it was only through that journey that I discovered the kind of conversations I was having with people that were far deeper and wider than what they needed to do and how they needed to be for their next role. And so I decided to retrain as an executive coach. I was already working. I had been working for a number of years supporting leaders in the business and the teams that I worked with was saying, well when I became a coach they were not surprised because they were saying, well Jane this was your type of leadership anyway, so it’s the most natural thing for you to be specifically focusing on coaching. Creating environments for other people to discover who they are and right to become in order to be their best leader. So that’s that’s how I got indicating in the first place.
|Lyssa deHart||Yeah. And you know, it’s really interesting is I hear you say that you know, there were a couple of things that really showed up which is, this I don’t know if it was actual as well as metaphorical but really being laid out flat on your back because of not taking care of yourself and also leaders not taking care of you. And I wonder in your coaching journey, how you navigated this, this pressure, especially as a solopreneurs and entrepreneur to be able to not a flat on your back again, right, But to how do you embody some of those leadership skills with yourself?|
Oh, what a beautiful question. Well, I think this is all about personal leadership and I think this has been one of the greatest impacts for me around retraining to be a coach and really understanding what it means to be a great coach. And so the journey I went on to become a coach was one of self-discovery, one of self-awareness, one of great learning, one of the new habits, to develop, one of great listening, one of, you know, inviting people to think more deeply than they had before.
And so, You know what enabled me to, to continue my coaching practice, you know, since 2000 I’ve been very fortunate to continue that has been to navigate my life and I will share, it’s not always been easy, there have been some challenges, there have been some depths, there have been some roller coaster rides and I think it is, you know, being coached myself, having a mental coach, having supervision throughout my own journey through those trials and tribulations that have really enabled me to stay true to my profession and to continue learning and developing and mastering my craft. I’m still on the journey.
Yeah, I often, I’m for myself and I often think of MCC isn’t a destination, it’s really just a mile marker, right of a continual path of growth and learning. But you know, I really love that you’re bringing into it that you have your own coach and you’re doing your get, you know mentoring and supervision. I’ve been in supervision for the last gosh, almost going on two years now. And just what an important element to my own coaching reflection has come out of this experience, of what I consider self-care, self-care as a coach, right?
So I really appreciate you bringing that forward. When you were really making that transition from HR and the work that you were doing within organizations and moving into coaching, what was the biggest um misconception that maybe you felt you had around what coaching is, was, was supposed to be I wonder if you if do you remember what that might have been?
Well, do you know, it’s interesting what, I don’t know where that well, I feel that it was less of a misconception from me because I felt very um yeah, blessed by the training I had. So, you know, the school of coaching I was in and then I went on to do a Post Grad in coaching that it was very clear to us, you know, the coaching and the ICF beautifully defined what coaching is.
I would say rather it was the misconception of what others believed coaching was. So some of my corporate clients in my very early days of courting this coaching Lyssa, it was around um you know, come and fix this person. You know, we have a remedial situation here, can you come and help us, you know, and do that. And sometimes it was the leader of the business, was saying, you know, I can’t handle this, can you take it on. Can you make this person different from who they are? Can you make this person the best you can?
|Lyssa deHart||Can you make this person different? I love it, but that’s true, right? That’s what we hear?|
And so that for me was the misconception coupled with sometimes I experience coaching perceived as oh you’ve been there before, so can you give me all the tips and tricks and advice that I should now do in order to be or do this way? And I think that that would be one of them, for me, one of the misconceptions is that um people have developed. And got some fabulous experience in life and business and then they go on to become a coach and for some, many great coaches and individuals don’t think oh okay, this person is going to give me all this advice and therefore I think that’s a huge missed opportunity because I feel that coaching is way more than that. I think coaching enables the individual with the help of the cage to quite literally transform themselves only if they want to be transformed.
Some of them will say I don’t want to be transformed, however, I want to move on, I want to make a change in my life and I think that’s the difference when with coaching as opposed to mentoring as opposed to therapy as opposed to counseling all have and are tremendous offerings for people to learn and grow um coaching as distinct as it is, to really tap into the resourcefulness of the human mind in front of us to unlock it to allow it to become who it’s meant to be, the person within, that’s what I see has been the misconception in what coaching is.
|Lyssa deHart||Yeah, I really appreciate that distinction. Um, I think that not only do I “Yes, and you, ” I think that there are a lot of coaches who come into coaching, thinking I’m gonna bring my expertise and in fact, that that shift from expert to novice right, is often, even if we know consciously at the end of our coach training that we’re now the novice and our client is now the expert. That’s a really interesting transitional space for people. And um and so I really appreciate that our clients come with us that way, come to us with those same sorts of expectations around expertise and um you know, we’re gonna solve the problem for them. Which is so ironic given the fact that we don’t live their lives.|
|Jane Adshead-Grant||I think that is a wonderful reflection to I have to just would love to amplify that, you know, and I think what I love about what you’ve just said, it’s our empathy for understanding when our clients come to us and how they show up, um and so part of our role is to educate them in what coaching can do for them if they’re willing to join us on the journey, we want to partner them as they, as they grow and develop for themselves.|
|Lyssa deHart||Yeah, I’m curious if you, you know, as you think about like your development of your listening skills, you’ve clearly done an amazing job of doing it, given that you’ve written a book around listening. And I love this idea. Are you listening for your turn to talk idea? Right? Because I think so often we’re listening for a very narrow window. When you think about listening as a coach, how did you expand your capacity to listen deeply?|
Mm Well, this was the transformation in my life and it was in meeting Nancy Klein. So through my learning and studying um and being taught by Nancy. Nancy is a real pioneer in this world of generative listening. And generative listening is the art of generating the best thinking and expression of feeling in another. And it was through Nancy that I discovered a deep connection with listening to ignite the mind and what that has enabled the generative listening has really enabled me to really quiet in my own mind, moving away from when I first started as a coach and having some performance anxiety around what the client might want and expect of me to actually get.
So present the paradox that of being is that I’m almost invisible. My attention is that of a palpable interest in respect for not only what they’re saying, but what they may go on to say, rather than forming a reply, making a diagnosis, even analyzing or thinking what a solution I might want to bring. And actually, as a coach that was incredibly liberating. And it’s at this depth of listening that you get to connect with the client. And more importantly, the client gets to connect with him or herself way more deeply because they can tell and they notice and they feel the energy from this level of listening.
|Lyssa deHart||Yeah, I really agree. And I mean there’s a habit that I think was in the review. You know, there’s a habit of how we intersect with others, right? We get into a habit of how we hear how we’re listening. Um, I did uh couples work for many years, um in therapy. And I would tell couples when they came into my office. Look, you guys don’t need me to have the argument. You are you can have it all by yourself in your head without anybody else around, right? We get into these habits of thinking and so this really conscious awareness of listening at a deeper level so that we actually become invisible so that we can then really be useful in the way that we ask, and invite curiosity for the client to make meaning. Versus our meaning and our agenda in our value. And so that really leads into the next question. As you moved from beginner coach into an MCC level coach, what were some of the places in your own journey where you had to navigate through your own habits, or ways of being, that we’re showing up for you in that in that journey?|
Mm I think the biggest distinction is was shifting from PCC to MCC. So this kind of professional coach to mastering our craft and continue to be on that journey is this sense of partnership. And this sense of really being alongside our client. To shine the light for them around, you know, “What’s possible for you? What could emerge in our partnership together? “
And so listening generatively was one area that in really practicing that and I continue to practice that every day. Um, is to be so present as I said earlier with our client. It’s also to um for me, I think it’s being able to recognize our role as a listener is to help the client understand for themselves, more of themselves. Is more important than us understanding them.
Um, the other thing I think is asking questions that will enable the client to connect more with themselves to go deeper, to challenge some of their own assumptions. You know, we live in a world of assumptions, some are liberating and some are limiting. And we need to have assumptions because our world is complex, our businesses are complex, our life is complex.
And so it’s natural for us and I think our role as a coach is to help clients revealed for themselves the assumptions that they live with those that limit them. And help them redefine some that liberate them to move on and make breakthroughs for themselves. So I think that developing really deep listening coupled with this mindset of partnership really shifted my journey to, to master to mastery.
That’s beautiful and I and I do, I think that is so important that this idea of partnership, I think for a lot of, I do a lot of mentor coaching also and I think for what I see in coaching conversations, is this idea of partnership as me telling you something you need to hear. Is the mistake. Right?
And the partnership that you’re talking about is really going back to that idea of how do we build a relationship in which we amplify the clients’ awareness and insight that they’re having and that our partnership is in our capacity to listen in our capacity to be curious on their behalf.
And, and so I really appreciate that. But it’s one thing that I mean and you may have already shared something, but if there’s one more thing that you think every coach should know? Like there’s some big, I don’t know, maybe not a big aha, but just something you think is important for coaches to hear from other coaches?
Well, thank you for the invitation to say afresh and even amplify it. And again, it’s something that Nancy taught me Nancy Klein and I just love this notion of that our role as a coach, is to free the mind rather than direct it.
And I think that is really important for coaches to really support our clients, tap into their own resourcefulness and to be confident and clear in our role as coaches is to do just that so that individuals can liberate their own mind, free their mind to be open to what’s possible and then make decisions and discern the way forward. Rather than us directing it, as you said earlier on our agenda, what we think they may need always were there to support and help um in ways our client requests of us, but going into a coaching conversation and a relationship with the whole purpose of it being, I’m here to free your mind rather than direct. It is something I think all coaches would benefit from.
|Lyssa deHart||I love that, I love the visual of that also, but it is such powerful intentionality to go into coaching with. I think it’s epically important as we learn to let go of our agenda in order to support our clients to free their minds. I mean I just think that’s beautiful. So what are you up to lately in the world?|
Oh well, no surprise to you that I am currently hosting a 30-day listening to liberate challenge. This is super exciting. I have 32 participants in the challenge um from different parts of the world, some for America from Europe, from the UK. And on this 30-day challenge.
I’m inviting them to step into deepening their listening skills in this idea of generative listening. Listening to others so that they can be and become who they are meant to be. So this is not only great fun but I am so humbled by the experience people are sharing by practicing some of the lessons that I share. It’s on a wonderful technology platform, It’s a bit like a game. It’s an app. It’s sort of a, Um, you know, five minutes a day, five days a week spend on the app to, to share your experiences, learn micro-lessons from me. Little videos of 1-2 minutes, share your gratitude of the day, um, and have a daily inspiration from me too. So this is something I’m really enjoying right now.
|Lyssa deHart||That sounds absolutely fabulous. So this is an app. People can go and well, they need to get a hold of you. So there will be links to your website and to LinkedIn and different things in the, you know, information around the podcast. But, but that sounds brilliant. What fun, what fun, it sounds like you’re just really having a great time out there in the world. That’s wonderful. Anything that you would add as we’re coming to a close here today?|
|Jane Adshead-Grant||I would just say thank you and any of your listeners today, and I would love please do get in touch if there’s anything that is resonated with you that you would love to learn more about in the art of listening coaching, I’d be thrilled to connect with you and learn more from you too. So thank you.|
|Lyssa deHart||Well, I have absolutely enjoyed having this conversation with you today. Thank you so much for being on the coaching studio podcast and to the listeners. Thank you for being here today. Please subscribe, follow like and share as you see fit. Um, it would be really useful for the show and I would really appreciate it greatly. So, thank you, everyone, for being here Jane, thank you so very much for participating in the podcast and having a, you know, being such a warm and welcomed guest today.|
|Jane Adshead-Grant||And thank you, I would love just to complete by appreciating you Lyssa for your beautiful, thoughtful questions that really ignited my mind today, for being able to recount some of my own journey. Which was fun to review and to reflect on. So thank you.|
|Lyssa deHart||Yeah, we all have an interesting journey. It’s a wonderful thing to share with people. So thank you again so much.|
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Lyssa deHart, LICSW, MCC
Lyssa deHart ditched her therapy practice to become a Leadership Confidence Coach. Along the way she discovered a passion for professional coaching and wanted to find ways to share that passion with the world. Come join her in discovering and meeting some of the most amazing professional coaches on the planet. Her goal is to inspire coaches. Lyssa is the author of StoryJacking: Change Your Dialogue, Transform Your Life. She is an ICF PCC Assessor, Certified Mentor Coach, and budding Coach SuperVisor. Lyssa uses her understanding of the ICF Core Competencies, combined with her knowledge of Neuroscience, to work with people to become extraordinary professional coaches. Let's Go!