There’s a New Coach in the House
You can tell someone is called to a profession when, without much formal training, they are able to hold their own with the best in the field. Harte Logan, a member of our CultureSync team, and in full disclosure my wife of 10 years, is one of those people in the field of leadership coaching.
When Steve Zaffron and I were writing The Three Laws of Performance, we had some tough, long days. We’d meet all day at my home in Los Angeles or Steve’s in Miami. We’d spend hours looking at text on a big screen and edit it, often getting in long debates about the best way to translate an idea into words on a page. When we worked in Los Angeles, Steve’s refrain would often be: “Let’s see if Harte thinks it’s any good.”
Harte would come home from her job at Sargent & Berman and would drop her stuff at the door and read what was on our big screen television. She’d know almost instantly if our ideas would work or not. She was always diplomatic in her answers, but also firm in her dedication to making the book the best it could be. I know I speak for Steve also when I say that the book would not have worked out nearly as well without her unique gift of just “knowing what works,” as Steve and I called it.
As the lead writer for Tribal Leadership, I’d show the earliest drafts to Harte. She saw the great gifts of the authors, and helped align them with the approach to the book. I think that’s what great coaches do: align great gifts with life roles, especially those that involve leading other people.
In the past year, she decided to take this advice herself, and align her great gifts with her role. She’d been coaching for years (and doing it very well), but wanted the best formal training available. Warren Bennis suggested the Hudson Institute in Santa Barbara, for which I’ve had enormous respect after a dinner meeting with their CEO Pam McClean, author of The Completely Revised Handbook of Coaching, over a decade ago.
It was so fun to see Harte go through this program. Having watched Harte do her MBA, and learn new roles at Activision, Disney, and NBC, this was far more intense. Part of the intensity was the work, but a great part was the realization that Harte was fully aligning her great gift with her career role. She told me once that the study felt like “coming home.” I’ve heard that line many times in my decades of working with coaches.
I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of the best coaches of our age. Phil Harkins at Linkage; John King, my co-author on Tribal Leadership; Henry and Karen Kimsey-House of CTI and co-authors of Co-Active Coaching; Thomas Leonard, who founded Coach U; and Werner Erhard, the founder of est. At CultureSync, we take pride in our own coaches. Our CEO Carrie Kish is an excellent coach, especially during periods of intense and rapid change. Deirdre Gruendler, our COO, is great at spotting blind spots using WordMapping and uses it with executives, business development giants, and their teams to rapidly improve performance. And now Harte Logan, our Chief Marketing Officer, has joined their ranks.
I’m happy to report we have a new coach in the house, and she’s one of the great ones.