What a Culture Catalyst Can Learn from a Master Gardener

I love gardening almost as much as I love coaching. In reality it’s not much of a stretch to see similarities between the two. 

This spring I planted dahlias in large pots on my patio. The plants grew with nice, strong stems and leaves but no blooms. Needless to say, I was disappointed. I had been fertilizing the plants regularly and was baffled that despite my efforts, they hadn’t reached their full potential. I consulted a master gardener at the nursery who taught me the difference between various fertilizers. She pointed out that if I wanted blooms, I needed to switch fertilizers and that one size doesn’t fit all when trying to promote growth. 

Once I made the switch, I was rewarded with big, beautiful blooms. This got me thinking about how leadership is like gardening. Leaders need to be observative to pick up when someone isn’t growing and developing to their full potential. From there, a good leader will investigate to learn what is needed to spur growth and make the necessary adjustments. 

Much like gardening, when it comes to coaching and leadership, one size doesn’t fit all. Do you know how to coach to your employees’ unique strengths? Is your recognition approach the same for everyone? If so, you could be missing crucial opportunities to help your staff bloom where they’re planted. 

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