Coaching Model: F U E L

Coaching

A Coaching Model Created by Frank Owiredu-Yeboa
(Business Coach, GHANA)

Introduction

The Collins English dictionary defines fuel as a substance…that provides heat or power when burned. Wikipedia describes fuel as any material that can be made to react with other substances so that it releases energy as heat or to be used for work.

In the corporate world, many employees and business owners are faced with challenges/ obstacles that make achieving and improving on their targets look ‘impossible’.

Some of the causes of these challenges are;

  • Targets are imposed on them.
  • If they are involved in the target setting, it is not for them to make an input regarding the numbers.
  • There are a lot of external factors at play during the year that can impact on achieving the targets. E.g. COVID -19 pandemic causing a disruption in the way we do business.

These challenges tend to demotivate employees and business owners, drain their energies, and make achieving those targets daunting.

The FUEL model is designed to give employees and business owners the necessary energy, power, and clarity to manage their day-to-day activities and focus on achieving and improving on their targets.

Find

If you don’t know where you are going, every road will get you nowhere. – Henry Kissinger

This famous quotation speaks to how many organizations, small business owners, and employees lose it when it comes to target/ goal setting. In Find, one must be clear about what one wants to achieve at the end of the period. Without a clear target and focus, it is difficult to assess or determine if there was an improvement in your performance or not.

For employees in an organization, Find, will mean being involved in setting targets. Even if one is not involved, it will help if the basis for the target is explained and accepted.

For business owners, Find, will be setting a realistic target for the period taking into consideration the previous target.

Typical questions for discussions will include;

  • What is the target you are expected to achieve?
  • What do you think about the targets for the year?
  • What are your concerns about the targets?
  • Based on the prior year, what target will be reasonable?
  • What is your expectation?

Understand

You don’t need strength to let go of something. What you really need is understanding.
Guy Finley

Once the target is set and very clear to all, the next most important thing to do is to understand what it will take to achieve the targets. Without a proper understanding of why one needs to achieve the target, its implementation will suffer.

Understanding the target also means, knowing it is achievable and having a clear strategy to achieving it with in-built contingencies. Typical questions for exploration will include;

  • What will it mean to you to achieve the target?
  • How will achieving the target improve your business, career, etc?
  • What strategies will you employ to achieve the targets?
  • What support will you need to help you achieve the target?
  • Who does what?

Execute

Execution is everything. John Doerr

Execution, as captured by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan with Charles Burch on the cover of their book, is the ‘discipline of getting things done. Now that you have accepted the target as realistic, achievable, and understood what it will take to get it done, you must then put the plan into execution so you can achieve it.

Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, and Jim Huling in the book The 4 Disciplines of Execution identified the following as helpful in the execution of a plan to achieve any goal/ target.

  • Focus on the Wildly important
  • Act on the Lead Measures
  • Keep a compelling scoreboard
  • Create a cadence of accountability

Typical questions to ensure execution will include;

  • What are your steps to achieve the goal?
  • When will you do what?
  • How will you hold yourself accountable?
  • What periods or time have you put aside to compare actuals to target?

Leverage

It is much easier to put existing resources to better use, than to develop resources where they do not exist.― George Soros

The oxford dictionary defines leverage as ‘use (something) to maximum advantage’. After going through the process, the most important outcome is to document insights and find ways to use these insights to improve on other areas of your personal and professional life.

Typical questions for reflection will include;

  • What worked that you need to replicate and improve on?
  • What did not work that you need to do away with or change?
  • What insights have you gotten from the experience?
  • How can you use the insight to improve on the next cycle’s performance?
  • What areas of your personal and professional life can you use the insights to improve?

Conclusion

At the end of the period, the cycle begins, but this time with insights from the prior period. When this is used to improve the process, there will be a consistent improvement in achieving and exceeding the target with the outcome of improving the personal and professional life of the individual and the profitability of the organization.

This process can also be used in other areas of life apart from the corporate environment.

References

Bossidy, L., Charan, R. and Burck, C., 2017. Execution. [Place of publication not identified]: Skillsoft Ireland Limited.

McChesney, C., Covey, S. and Huling, J., n.d. Summary of The 4 disciplines

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