What I WAS Expecting

I was excited to experience it for myself! Leadership Through Coaching. Leader’s Imago’s newest public offering is the brainchild of a colleague of mine, Chip White. We have partnered to bring it to Leader’s Imago clients and beyond.

We decided to beta-test the program. Chip and I invited a selection of his connections and Leader’s Imago clients to be our “guinea pigs”. I, too, sat in as a participant. I figured I might learn a little something to sharpen my own coaching skills, but mostly I was participating to learn how to facilitate the course going forward.


Recall that IMAGO is the last stage of metamorphosis of a butterfly. The difficult changes of transformation occur in the cocoon, and then IMAGO! The butterfly emerges from the cocoon having achieved its fully mature state, it’s potential!

My own IMAGO experience occurred during Leadership Through Coaching. I have been coaching for many years, and teaching leaders how to effectively coach others. But during the course, I learned a new concept that created a type of epiphany moment – Energy Levels. I’d read the book, Energy Leadership by Bruce Schneider, a few years ago and it piqued my interest. But seeing how the concept applied while coaching others helped me synthesize earlier concepts I’d learned in an entirely NEW LIGHT! My understanding of personality and situational leadership and motivation theory began to make even more sense. It was a bit of a “jaw drop” moment. EUREKA!!

But that wasn’t my IMAGO experience.

What I Wasn’t Expecting

It’s one thing to learn a new concept. It’s an entirely different thing to PRACTICE a new concept. And here it was – my own IMAGO experience. I honestly struggled when it came to role playing and practicing the new concept. I doubted my ability. There were moments I felt frustrated and annoyed. I messed up. I WAS TOTALLY IN THE COCOON, Y’ALL – squirming and contorting, wanting to really “get it right”!  I kept at it during class. I self-reflected, I got feedback, I tried some more, and I improved. All the while, I was growing in confidence and competence. And I have been intentionally keeping at it since, practicing my new coaching posture with a couple of clients lately. I continue to improve and get more comfortable using this new concept. My new skills will certainly benefit my clients (and perhaps some of my personal relationships as well!).

Don’t get me wrong! I wouldn’t say I’ve emerged just yet from the cocoon in my “fully mature form”. But in hindsight, I realize how important the struggle for transformation was inside of that cocoon of Leadership Through Coaching! I am a better coach today than I was before the program. And I am even more excited than ever to bring Leadership Through Coaching to others so they can become better coaches, too!

It is transformational, Leadership Through Coaching – in a way that wasn’t what I was expecting. It became my own IMAGO experience.