Listening more than you speak encourages others to feel respected and valued as their opinion matters. It shows that you are open-minded and willing to learn from them which can lead to better problem-solving and collaboration.

The number one leadership initiative in any organization today is improved coaching. Coaching empowers employees, empowerment drives engagement, and engagement drives performance. At its core, coaching is about transformation. Leading distributed teams requires transforming how we coach and changing our play calls and playbooks to get things done. As a part of our interview series called “Moving From Command & Control to Coaching & Collaboration; How Leaders and Managers Can Become Better Coaches,” we had the pleasure of interviewing Rudy Mawer.

Rudy Mawer is a leading celebrity marketer and influencer, with over 1 million followers and over 100,000 members, including business partnerships with Floyd Mayweather, Mike Tyson, Jordan Belfort from Wolf of Wallstreet and more. Rudy runs multiple businesses, including a Marketing Capital group with the Original Shark from the TV show “Shark Tank” Kevin Harrington where he’s helped over 50,000 small businesses around the world. For the past 2 years, his main focus was operating large US Ecommerce brands that his two partners Tai Lopez and Alex Mehr acquired with their investment group Retail. He has run teams of 100+ employees for 9 figure brands. He also built one of the world’s largest direct response marketing agencies with celebrity clients including Olympic Gold Medalists, WWE Wrestlers, NFL Super Bowl Champions and iconic figures.

Thank you for joining us to explore a critical inflection point in how we define leadership. Our readers would like to get to know you better. What was a defining moment that shaped who you are as a leader?

A defining moment that shaped who I am as a leader was when I was tasked with leading my first team. It was then that I realized the immense power of people and how working collaboratively towards a shared goal can produce amazing results.

John C. Maxwell is credited with saying, “A leader is someone who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.” How do you embody that quote as a leader?

I embody Maxwell’s quote by showing my team the way, discussing it with them, and demonstrating it in action.

How do you define the differences between a leader as a manager and a leader as a coach?

As a manager, you are responsible for setting performance expectations and enforcing disciplinary policies; as a coach, your job is to be an advisor to help your team reach their full potential — there is far more mentorship involved than just giving out orders.

We started our conversation by noting that improved coaching is the number one leadership initiative in any organization today. What are some essential skills and competencies that leaders must have now to be better coaches?

Some essential skills and competencies that leaders must have now to be better coaches include strong communication capabilities both verbally and non-verbally; they should also possess great listening skills, empathy, trustworthiness, and emotional intelligence (EQ).

We’re all familiar with the adage, “You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” How are you inspiring — rather than mandating — leaders to invest in upskilling and reskilling?

I inspire both my team and future leaders by providing incentives or rewards to those who make an effort — this encourages others to participate as well.

Let’s get more specific. How do you coach someone to do their best work? How can leaders coach for peak performance in our current context? What are your “Top 5 Ways That Leaders and Managers Can Be Effective Coaches?”

To coach someone for peak performance, I advise implementing targeted feedback sessions and setting clear goals that are accurate for their personal objectives yet achievable in the given timeframe. This is only the starting point of becoming a more effective coach. It’s important that they also:

  1. Listen more than you speak.

Listening more than you speak encourages others to feel respected and valued as their opinion matters. It shows that you are open-minded and willing to learn from them which can lead to better problem-solving and collaboration.

2. Respect their boundaries and cultural differences.

Respecting boundaries and cultural differences ensures a sense of comfort among those in the environment. It also allows for an equal playing field where everyone’s voice is heard and respected.

3. Provide timely feedback that is both constructive and helpful.

Providing timely feedback allows for a guidance system for employees to track their progress and make the needed changes or improvements to get the job done in an efficient manner.

4. Create a safe atmosphere for open dialogue and discussion.

Creating a safe atmosphere for open dialogue opens up opportunities for people to express their thoughts without fear of judgment or criticism. People need to feel comfortable in order to be productive and creative.

5. Encourage them to take ownership and responsibility.

Finally, encouraging them to take ownership and responsibility allows individuals to gain a sense of pride in their work. They are more likely to be proactive and motivated if they can see the positive impact their efforts have on the project or task at hand.

We’re leading and coaching in increasingly diverse organizations. And one aspect of workforce diversity on the rise is generational diversity. What advice would you offer about how to effectively coach a multi-generational workforce? And how do you activate the collective potential of a multi-generational workforce?

To effectively coach a multi-generational workforce, it is important to understand the different generations’ strengths, weaknesses, values, and motivations. Appreciate their individual differences while also highlighting their collective potential — use this as an advantage rather than letting these differences become a hindrance to the team’s success.

You’re referring to emotional intelligence, in a sense. What are two steps every leader can take to demonstrate a higher level of emotional intelligence?

Leaders must first recognize their own and other people’s emotions to demonstrate a higher level of emotional intelligence. You can also practice active listening by listening carefully to what others are saying as well as their non-verbal cues during conversations in order to better understand the context of the conversation.

Words matter. And we’re collectively creating a new leadership language right now. What are the most important words for leaders to use now?

The words that leaders must use now include “We” instead of “I”, to emphasize the collaborative nature of their team. They should also focus on using ‘growth-oriented language’ such as “Try this different approach and see how it works for you,” or “Let’s brainstorm together and see if we can come up with a better solution.” Above anything else it’s important to start using powerful words of encouragement and support such as “I believe in you,” or “You have the potential to succeed at this task!”

I keep inspiring quotes on my desk. What’s your favorite “Life Lesson Quote,” and why does it mean so much to you?

My favorite life lesson quote is by author Peter Drucker — “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” This remains a constant reminder for me of the power of vision, courage, and decisiveness. Being a leader requires more than just knowing how to do something — it requires having the foresight to know what must be done for a better tomorrow.

Our readers often like to continue the conversation. What’s the best way for readers to connect with you and to stay current on what you’re discovering?

Readers can stay connected with me on Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. I look forward to hearing from you!

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to experience a leadership master at work. We wish you continued success and good health!