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San Francisco, CA
Executive Coach & Instructor @ Stanford Graduate School of Business
Interests: Executive coaching, leadership, change management
Recent Activity
This Spring I'll be teaching a new course at the Stanford Graduate School of Business entitled The Art of Self-Coaching. Today I talked about the course with a few interested students, and above is a condensed set of my slides.... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Ed Batista
A revised edition of the HBR Guide to Coaching Employees is now available, and although I'm hardly an objective critic I think it's a substantial improvement on the original. I wrote the Introduction, Why Coach?, as well as Giving Feedback... Continue reading
Posted Jan 7, 2015 at Ed Batista
Careers involve numerous transitions when we “step up” into a new role, typically one with greater rewards, bigger responsibilities, and higher stakes. We’re well aware that these opportunities come as the result of effort and diligence in our previous role,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2015 at Ed Batista
Why is change so difficult? Why do we resist it? Why do we fail to adapt even when our current methods aren't working? My work with clients in my coaching practice and MBAs at Stanford often involves helping people implement,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2014 at Ed Batista
Sadly but inevitably, a common issue in my coaching practice is helping leaders decide whether or not to fire a senior team member. These decisions are always difficult ones--the clear-cut situations resolve themselves and tend not to take up time... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2014 at Ed Batista
Dr. Sonja Lyubomirsky's work on happiness and fulfillment has had a significant impact on my approach to coaching (and my own life) since I first read her book The How of Happiness shortly after its publication in 2009. (She's continued... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2014 at Ed Batista
Thanks, Roy--I appreciate the feedback!
Toggle Commented Dec 19, 2014 on The Five Stages of Procrastination at Ed Batista
Thanks, Wenjie. I fully agree that asking a question is often the best way to advance a dialogue, and yet it takes practice to be able to come up with an effective question in the midst of a difficult discussion. Happily, life offers us many such opportunities to practice.
Toggle Commented Oct 6, 2014 on My Favorite Piece of Advice... at Ed Batista
As adults we face a version of the marshmallow test nearly every waking minute of every day. We’re not tempted by sugary treats, but by our browser tabs, phones, tablets, and (soon) our watches—all the devices that connect us to... Continue reading
Posted Sep 15, 2014 at Ed Batista
Thanks, Jeff. I think we're in agreement: As a species we evolved a negativity bias, so we often tend to assume the worst. In addition, when we're emotionally aroused or triggered in some way, our ability to take in and process information accurately is diminished. Put those two dynamics together, and it's easy to see how we can misinterpret someone's motive for providing disconfirming or critical feedback. This is why I think it's so important for us to work on making feedback less stressful.
Over the past year I've been doing a series of video-conferences with a distributed management team on topics related to communication, feedback, leadership, and coaching, and last week we wrapped up with a session on self-coaching and organizational culture. The... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2014 at Ed Batista
...comes from the wonderfully cantankerous early 20th century actor W.C. Fields: I don't have to attend every argument I'm invited to. We're so quick to assume that if someone has an issue or a dispute or wants to pick a... Continue reading
Posted Sep 10, 2014 at Ed Batista
The communication funnel is a concept I regularly discuss with coaching clients, most of whom are senior leaders in constant contact with their direct reports and/or managing virtual teams. We prioritize immediacy and convenience in our communication, so we start... Continue reading
Posted Sep 8, 2014 at Ed Batista
At least once a month an ambitious and hard-working person in their 20s asks me, “Should I get an MBA?” I earned my MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business in 2000, and since 2007 I’ve been an Instructor and... Continue reading
Posted Sep 4, 2014 at Ed Batista
In "Bouncing Back," a profoundly thought-provoking book that draws upon concepts from philosophy, psychology and neuroscience to promote resilience and well being, therapist Linda Graham relates the following story from Buddhist tradition: A master monk is meditating in a temple... Continue reading
Posted Aug 26, 2014 at Ed Batista
Last week I conducted a workshop in San Francisco on Team Effectiveness with a group of senior managers at a technology company. They were able to acknowledge right from the start that their communication as a team could be improved,... Continue reading
Posted Aug 25, 2014 at Ed Batista
My latest post at HBR: The Most Productive People Know Who to Ignore A coaching client of mine is managing partner at a very large law firm, and one of the issues we’ve been working on is how to cope... Continue reading
Posted Aug 20, 2014 at Ed Batista
Much of my work as a coach involves helping leaders determine how they can most effectively wield power to best meet the needs of their organizations. And note that by power I mean not only the directive authority invested in... Continue reading
Posted Aug 16, 2014 at Ed Batista
My latest post at HBR: Make Getting Feedback Less Stressful Much of my work as an executive coach and an instructor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business involves helping people improve their abilities to deliver feedback more effectively. It’s a... Continue reading
Posted Aug 8, 2014 at Ed Batista
Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston's Graduate School of Social Work, and she's dedicated her career to the study of such topics as vulnerability, empathy, courage and shame. Her 2010 TEDxHouston talk on The Power... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2014 at Ed Batista
Last week I volunteered to facilitate the fourth workshop in an ongoing series on Startup Communication aimed at helping co-founders 1) communicate more effectively with each other, 2) establish group norms in the company that support better communication and 3)... Continue reading
Posted Jul 31, 2014 at Ed Batista
Thanks, Dan--I appreciate the kind words and the food for thought. I definitely think about the importance of helping our students self-coach after graduation. I actually first became interested in the concept about 5 years ago when a second-year student said to me, "I've benefited a lot from all the coaching I've received while I've been in school, but I'm not going to be afford a coach immediately after graduation; how do I coach myself?" It occurred to me that I'd essentially been writing on just that topic for the previous 5 years, which led me to organize roughly 100 pages of blog posts into a set of "self-coaching guides" on topics such as Communication and Leadership. I think you raise an important question about how we should decide where to focus our energy when it comes to self-coaching, particularly given our tendency to address our weaknesses, when, at a certain point in our lives and our careers, we're probably better served by building on our strengths. My understanding of recent research and my work with clients and students have provided some clarity here--for example, I've been using the acronym MESS-E to highlight the importance of Mindfulness, Exercise, Sleep hygiene, Stress reduction and Emotion management as practices that are core to any self-coaching regimen. That said, I also believe it's critical for each of us to choose for ourselves how we'll benefit most from these efforts, and I'm going to have to find the right balance between recommending certain practices while avoiding a formulaic approach.
A recent conversation with my GSB colleague Collins Dobbs helped clarify my thoughts on how we teach leadership at Stanford and why, and it motivated me to lay out that philosophy more explicitly--to plant a flag, so to speak. I'm... Continue reading
Posted Jul 24, 2014 at Ed Batista
On Friday I facilitated a workshop on Startup Communication aimed at helping an early-stage company's employees work together more effectively. I feel privileged to work with all my clients, but in this case it's fair to say that it was... Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2014 at Ed Batista
My latest post at HBR: The Art of Saying a Professional Goodbye Saying "goodbye" is one of those activities that seems so simple it hardly requires advance thought--and so endings creep up on us and catch us unprepared. We tend... Continue reading
Posted May 7, 2014 at Ed Batista