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Executive Coaching with Backbone and Heart: A Systems Approach to Engaging Leaders with Their Challenges Hardcover – 24 Aug 2007


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; 2nd Edition edition (24 Aug. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787986399
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787986391
  • Product Dimensions: 16 x 3.8 x 23.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 170,408 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

From the Inside Flap

Executive Coaching with Backbone and Heart

Coaching high–powered executives requires something extra. Executive coaches must become partners whose emotional investment in business outcomes equals that of their clients. They must have the strength and courage to face

an organizational leader in a time of crisis and speak the unvarnished truth. They must be a force to be reckoned with. They have to have backbone and heart.

When it was first published in 2000, Mary Beth O′Neill′s book Executive Coaching with Backbone and Heart helped to define the field of coaching at the senior and executive level. This second edition of O′Neill′s groundbreaking book shares the secrets of O′Neill′s success and details the techniques she′s developed and refined over the course of her exceptional career. This edition has been thoroughly revised and expanded to include

  • Three Key Factors methodology for setting up client goals and the measures for those goals
  • Iinformation about how to involve the client′s boss in the coaching contract

  • More extensive material on live action coaching

  • Commentary on the use of assessment tools and instruments

  • A method to work with clients on the systemic patterns they want to change

  • An entirely new chapter devoted solely?to calculating the ROI of coaching work with the client

  • And more illustrative stories

O′Neill teaches coaches how to deal with clients in terms of the "force fields" they create and react to, that is, the political and emotional climates within organizations that can ensnare both executive and coach and make for faulty decision making. O′Neill reinforces her observations on coach self–management and her systems perspective with a sound four–phase methodology for implementing both, a methodology that covers contracting, planning, live action intervening, and debriefing.

Executive Coaching with Backbone and Heart is written for anyone, no matter what their discipline or background, who is interested in helping leaders work through their dilemmas so they can transform their learning directly into results for their organizations.

From the Back Cover

Praise for Executive Coaching with Backbone and Heart

"In this book, O′Neill brings form and structure to the art of executive coaching. Novices are provided a path while seasoned practitioners will find affirmation."
Daryl R. Conner, CEO and president, ODR–USA, Inc.

"Mary Beth O′Neill′s executive coaching gave me the tools and clarity to become a far more effective leader and change agent. The bottom line was that we succeeded with a monumental organizational turnaround that had seemed impossible to accomplish."
Eric Stevens, former CEO, Courage Center

"O′Neill writes in a way that allows you to see this experienced coach in action. What a wonderful way to learn!"
Geoff Bellman, consultant and author, The Consultant′s Calling

"Mary Beth brings a keen business focus to coaching by not just contributing insights but through helping me and my team gain the insights that we need to solve our own problems. She has the ability to see through the sometimes chaotic dialogue and personalities in order to help a team focus on the real issues and dynamics that can impede organizations from achieving their goals."
John C. Nicol, general manager, MSN Media Network

"Effective leaders require courage, compassion, and initiative. O′Neill′s systems–based coaching serves as a guide for both coaches and executives to better enable good decisions and good decision–makers."
Paul D. Purcell, president, Beacon Development Group

"With Mary Beth O′Neill′s coaching, I′ve become the kind of leader who balances both the needs to get results and to develop great working relationships.?Since I started working with her, I′ve won accolades as the Top Innovator for my company, and as Professional of the Year for my industry.?More important, I′ve been able to scope my job in a way that allows me to learn and contribute at the same time, all the while delivering great results to the bottom line."
Lynann Bradbury, vice president, Waggener Edstrom


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Brian Carney VINE VOICE on 19 May 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of the best coaching books that I have read. It has a refreshing commercial reality, which reflects O'Neill's practical experience and applies coaching theories in a sensible and realistic way. She addresses the issue of how to combine 'clean' coaching with mentoring (bordering on consultancy) without compromising the quality of either. She recognises the slightly 'harder edge', which one often needs when coaching busy executives, balancing some tough challenging with an underlying supportive positioning - as per the title of the book. A very good read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John Blakey on 21 Jun. 2012
Format: Hardcover
In my own training and study of executive coaching Mary Beth O'Neill's book was the first that I came across that was written with a strong focus upon the organisational context of executive coaching. Whereas many other texts have a life coaching bias, this book is rooted firmly in the organisational world and therefore immediately gets stuck into the challenging topics of contracting, adopting a systems perspective and the crucial idea of developing a 'backbone' as well as a 'heart' to our coaching presence. Without a strong 'backbone' a coach working at senior levels in business risks drifting into the 'cosy club' of semi-therapeutic conversations which do not deliver bottom line results. This book greatly helps in avoiding that risk. The writing style is clear, well structured and with plenty of practical examples. The appendices are particularly useful including a self-assessment questionnaire that allows the reader to assess their current coaching style. All in all, this remains an original and thought provoking contribution which I have found myself referring to many times over the years.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By SHR on 9 Dec. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bit repetitive but that makes sure you've got it. Lots of practical tips will keep it as a reference source for many years.
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By Melys Phinnemore on 15 Aug. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great book with loads of helpful new perspective on Executive Coaching
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By Rohan on 23 May 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
a very boring book this.

I an an author myself and would really never provide a bad review to a fellow brother or sister and so this isn't. a oersonal attack at all. I don't know the author but was pointed towards reading it and was just so bored the moment I began reading it.

It lacks a experiential engagement completely and somehow I feel it is misses the whole point about 'Coaching'.
It tries hard to get the method right and perhaps it is meant for a certain reader but for me,it just fails the primary test...it lacks juice and spirit.
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