I am excited to be going through the LEAP Program with Ellison Partners and welcomed the opportunity to speak about my journey here in this column. Just to explain what the program is to all those who are not familiar, LEAP is a different type of leadership program that features monthly, half-day skill-building workshops, individualized personal coaching and confidential peer interaction. The LEAP groups consist of 8-12 people and members receive comprehensive materials, high-energy and experiential curriculum, leadership skill integration and expert coaching all designed to ensure return on investment. This is a great format as it provides training from a number of different directions. You aren’t just learning from an instructor and you’re not just getting coaching. You’re actually interacting and getting to know others who are going through the same process and who you can grow with over the course of the 12 months. Not only is this invaluable in getting feedback, but it’s also so fun to watch the other group members develop and I really feel like many of us are becoming friends.

My fifth session was this month, and I am surprised at how comfortable I already feel with the other group members. Talking about our challenges and weaknesses just puts you on a different level than with most people in your life and makes for a more intense and fulfilling relationship. I look forward to seeing how each of my group-mates changes and grows over the next few months!

In this session, we spoke about effective communication. I know this has always been a struggle in my own business and I learned that most of the others in the group were experiencing the same issues. One of my goals has always been to get my team to perform at their optimum levels and to have each other them soar with their strengths. This week’s session made me see that this is not possible without effective communication and that this is something we all need to work on. It is really the foundation of any business, no matter if you have two employees or two thousand and whether you are selling cars or an attorney in a law firm.

Another goal of mine that came out of this session was to make clear what my expectations are to my team, set goals for achieving those results and follow through. Again, this all comes back to communication. It’s so easy for small business owners to get overwhelmed by their huge to-do lists and forget that when communication breaks down, the entire organization suffers.

I am very excited to continue on this journey with my fellow LEAP participants and build on the progress we have already made. Stay tuned to learn what we focus on in next month’s LEAP session!

For more information on LEAP, please visit www.EllisonPartners.com.

If you would like more information on LEAP, please contact Nikki Ellison, Certified Executive Coach at Nikki@EllisonPartners.com or 402.884.7300. Or visit them online at www.EllisonPartners.com