Abandoned Mine Shafts

Updated: Sep 16, 2020

The other day I was working on a small ranch my wife and I own. The project for the day was to secure, with the help of a wildlife biologist and Parks and Wildlife officer, some abandoned gold and silver mine shafts we had identified on the property, so that animals and humans wouldn’t be injured by falling down these deep holes.

As I thought about my project and Compass Executive Coaching, it occurred to me these mine shafts are an analogy for our life journey and the value of coaching in at least 4 ways:

1. Our ranch is beautiful and without careful scrutiny it is easy to miss the presence of mine shaft openings on the property. Life too, for the most part, is a beautiful thing but there are hazards, “mine shafts,” along the way that are easy to miss until it is too late. Like falling into a mine can at best delay our progress and at worst cause injure or mortally wound us, so too these hazards in our work and personal lives can at best delay us from reaching our potential and our goals or even prevent us from reaching them all together.

2. When walking in an area with mine shafts, it is best to, with the help of someone familiar with the area, chart a course that avoids the mines. So, it is with our personal and professional lives, there are people, projects, departments, teams, and jobs that are best avoided. A coach can be that trusted guide that helps us create a plan that helps us avoid professional and personal hazards.

3. Sometimes avoiding mine shafts is impossible. Despite our best efforts suddenly in front of us is a gaping hole. In this case, it is probably best to mark the spot and come back to the hole with assistance and materials to either fill in the hole or build a barrier around the hole. The same thing is true in life, sometimes we come upon hazards that we didn’t anticipate. Sometimes it is a blind spot, a behavior that hinders us from achieving our goals, in that case a coach can help us change the behavior, in other words fill in the hole. Sometimes it’s a toxic boss or an under-performing team in which case a coach can help us erect safeguards that keep us from falling in the hole and suffering injury.

4. Fourth, in the process of preparing to construct barriers around the mine openings on my ranch I contacted a local mining expert. To my surprise, he identified a mine opening that I was not aware of. A coach can be that individual that helps us locate gaping holes before they adversely affect our journey. Through the use of behavioral and 360 assessment a coach can help us proactively identify areas for improvement and aid us in creating an action plan.

While coaching is not the panacea for every situation, coaching can help us chart a course that avoids hazards that can impede your progress. When we encounter hazards coaches can help us construct barriers to help us avoid falling victim to the hazards or by helping us create an action plan to address personal areas of opportunity. Finally, engaging a coach can help us proactively identify hazards, areas of opportunity and create a plan to eliminate the hazard.

At Compass Executive Coaching we are dedicated to helping you chart and navigate your course so that you can safely arrive at your destination

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