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The Weekly Coaching Conversation

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The Weekly Coaching Conversation

A Business Fable About Taking Your Team’s Performance – and Your Career – to the Next Level


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Sound team leadership requires great coaching: Give your team members a lot, and you’ll get a lot in return.

Editorial Rating



  • Applicable
  • Well Structured


Great coaches lead the most productive corporate work teams. These special managers guide their team members to superior performance by conducting regular “coaching conversations” and consistently providing developmental feedback. Drawing from more than five years of research involving 2,000 managers and employees, performance improvement specialist Brian Souza teaches leaders how to engage in regular, constructive discussions with their team members. He believes managers can consistently get more out of their teams if they adopt the right approach. Souza uses a popular business book device – the fable – to create two entertaining, recognizable characters who convey his ideas in a readable, instructive way. All words of wisdom – and silliness – come from the characters, not the author’s direct instruction. getAbstract recommends Souza’s pragmatic advice to aspiring leaders, newly promoted managers and experienced executives – in short, any leader who seeks to elevate team performance.


A Fable

Managers should establish “constructive coaching” as an ongoing process that provides developmental feedback to their team members. Brad Hutchinson’s experiences demonstrate why and how. Hutchinson is a sales manager who thinks he knows it all until he starts to work with Mick Donnelly, a former football coach still known affectionately as “Coach” to his friends and the people he mentors. Coach teaches Brad what effective team leadership demands.

Hutchinson works at NPC, a Fortune 500 firm, which has just named him Sales Leader of the Year. The CEO soon plans to honor Brad at a black-tie corporate event, but Brad wants to celebrate right away, so he heads out to Halftime, a popular local sports bar.

Hutchinson habitually focuses just on himself and his ambitions: “more money, a bigger title and greater prestige.” Only a few employees applauded when an NPC executive announced that Hutchinson had won the company’s big award. Actually, noticeable grumbling filled the room, and his colleagues seemed stunned. Hutchinson’s team was especially surprised. In fact, Hutchinson never paid much attention to the team members’ personal feelings. Still he...

About the Author

Brian Souza is the founder and president of ProductivityDrivers, a corporate training company that specializes in improving employee performance and organizational productivity.

Comment on this summary

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    J. M. 6 months ago
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    S. S. 4 years ago
    Awesome and on point summary that made me self reflect and consider changing my management style despite having been using some of the elements already in the material but to using more of the information which is stipulated in this book summary.
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    K. D. 5 years ago
    I really enjoyed this summary. What resonated for me the most is how Coach offered to help if the Supervisor was willing to help others and how it changed the Supervisors perspective entirely. It shows that as a leader , you have to be committed to the development of your people and not just talk about it, but be about it.

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