I remember the first time I asked the question.
It was ten years ago. I was sitting in a private conference room with an executive of a large biotech company. (Don’t bother checking my client list; you won’t find this engagement listed there.)
She had engaged me to help her both focus and advance their sustainability strategy, and her role and effectiveness in the company.
A half hour into the conversation, I asked her a question I had never asked a client before, and which I have asked every single client since:
“What are you really here to do?”
“What do you mean,” she responded. “Do you in mean my job?”
I did an unusual thing for a consultant. I kept my mouth shut.
“Do you mean in my career,” she asked? I stayed quiet. “Do you mean in my life? Do you mean… Oh!” And then SHE got quiet.
And then something happened in the room. The space shifted. Like a 3D rack-focus shot—except in real life. And something shifted in us too—something we could feel in our bodies. We dropped into a depth and authenticity we had not encountered before, and it stayed with us. And it provided the basis for a powerful, game-shifting, life-shifting exploration of purpose, commitment, capability, and change.
The “purpose” question is one that I have asked every client ever since that day.
For companies, it takes the form of “what business are you really in?” What is the core value proposition that you offer to your customers? Because what they buy is ultimately more important, more powerful—and much more generative of innovation and opportunity—than what you sell. (And this is at the heart of how we have identified billions of dollars of economic opportunity for hundreds of companies, that have realized hundreds of millions of dollars of tangible benefits.)
For individuals–executives, leaders, managers, entrepreneurs, people looking to advance (or change) their careers–it takes the form of a deep, private, personal, and sometimes confrontive conversation. It’s something different than consulting (where my team and I produce deliverables). It’s a generative conversation – probing your deepest concerns, commitments, goals and strategies; designing strategies to meet those goals, fulfill those commitments, address those concerns; and holding you accountable to your own commitments. (As one recent coaching client just wrote: “Weekly touch points with Gil were the perfect combination of industry knowledge, brainstorming partner and accountability that I needed to reach my targets. Gil is supportive, kind and tough. It was the perfect combination for me.”)
I’m writing today to invite you into that generative conversation. To engage me as your personal coach—on this mission we share—to work with you individually, and perhaps with your entire team, to dramatically advance your effectiveness in your job, in your career, in your life, and in your contribution to “what you’re really here to do.”
You’ll find the mechanics of the process described here– along with a brief form that will help you focus your concerns and help me evaluate whether I can be of value to you.
If you’re at all interested in considering the next step—in your work, your career and your life, please do that today. (Or better yet, call me right now on my mobile: 1-510-435-6346.) I’m offering special end-of-summer pricing right now–for both individuals and teams—but only if you make your commitment before the end of this week.