Let’s Just Get On With It !

“Let’s do it” were the last words of convicted murderer Gary Gilmore as he stood in front of a firing squad in Utah in 1977. Appeals had failed and it was time to get on with the grisly task of execution. People spend too much time these days thinking about what to do and how to do it instead of just getting on with the job.

The prevalence of prevarication and self doubt creates opportunities for life and business coaches. They make your fears and self-criticism seem more credible and then step in (expensively) to “help you understand yourself”.

I go rigid reading the lavish promises made by coaches who offer to help you “gain empowerment to find all solutions to life’s problems within yourself”.

It would be absolutely marvellous to discover I have all the solutions to all life’s problems within myself but I don’t, none of us does.

Personal coaching is a business riddled with the worst kind of jargon and when I see language like that then warning bells ring.

I sense a parasite seeking to live off other people’s natural insecurities. As a lawyer I object to the fact that these vague promises lack any measurable quality.

The makers of Coleman’s Mustard boasted that they made millions from what people left on the edge of their plate. I consider coaching a mustard business, and I think a proper cost- benefit analysis would lead most people to that conclusion.

Coaching seems a field ripe for anyone who wants to set themselves up. Yes, there will be some good individuals but judging by some of the people who claim to be coaches , I wouldn’t ask them for directions to the toilet.

I feel the same about personal coaches as I do about personal trainers. A high powered athlete needs one, the rest of the country just needs to get off the sofa. Me included. A personal trainer is not about being fit, it’s an ego trip.

If my staff asked our firm to pay for coaching I’d share my doubts and try to harness their interest in making changes in a different way.

I believe in personal development but on a less self aware basis. I see approachability as the key essence of good teamwork .I believe we can best help our people  not through coaching but by being available and caring.

There will be some good coaches out there but I believe that they would be equally good if they were running your sales team or in charge of customer care. Business is about good people, full stop.

I never thought I’d side with the sentiments of a murderer but my last words are pretty close to Gary Gilmore’s  forget the coaching- let’s just do it.

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About Donald Reid

Born, raised and educated in Glasgow Donald gained an M.A. and LLB at the University of Glasgow becoming a Partner in Mitchells Roberton in 1978. He is a specialist in property law dealing mainly in commercial transactions, security work and property related company matters. He is listed in the Law Society of Scotland’s approved Directory of Expert Witnesses relative to professional negligence claims. Donald gives evidence in court on instruction of both Pursuers and Defenders. He is also consulted regularly to give formal and informal Opinions in his field of expertise. In January 2005 Donald gained accreditation as a qualified mediator. Mediation offers a speedy and cost effective solution to disputes and has proven to have a high percentage rate of successful settlements. Donald lectured and tutored on the Diploma in Legal Practice for 20 years, he speaks widely at professional seminars and conferences and has contributed articles and chapters to various journals and publications. He has been the Chairman of Mitchells Roberton since 1997 and is much respected by both clients and colleagues alike. Donald is married with two sons and three small grandchildren. He has strong church commitments, being an elder and a wedding celebrant. His nearest claim to fame was making the headlines in 2007 when he was seriously injured in a shipping accident in the Arctic. He is renowned in the firm for his quick and insightful humour which never seems to fail him and brings much laughter to the work place.

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