Updated: Jul 12
Marcelo Benzaquen, a senior manager in the field of software engineering in the Tech industry, dreamed of facilitating workshops about building and flying model airplanes in his spare time. He did not imagine that one question would "kick" him even higher.
First of all, I would like to start with a required statement appropriate for our time: this article was not written by any artificial intelligence. It is me, Perry, who is now sitting in front of the computer screen in my clinic and writing Marcelo's story from my personal point of view. Like in the old days, when everything was more authentic and simple.
Marcelo first came to me when I was conducting coaching sessions for employees for the hi-tech company F5 in Tel Aviv. As in any coaching process, Marcelo and I talked about the different spaces of life, his aspirations, and of course, the gaps that naturally exist between them and everyday reality.
In that initial conversation, I asked Marcelo:
- What is your dream?
Marcelo smiled and said:
- "I want to teach people how to assemble and fly model airplanes. I always dreamed of facilitating workshops in this field.
Marcelo's eyes opened when he talked about his dream. I saw how the same innocent question, which we were all asked when we were little, stirred something in him. We continued to talk about Marcelo's dream and his great love for this field. The more we talked, the more I realized that it might not just be a dream for him. That it could be something bigger, which is hidden by limiting phrases like: "Be realistic".
So I decided to ask another question that I call an "anchor question". An "anchor question" is a question that is more significant in the sense that the answer to this question has the potential to change the internal discourse of the coachee and create a springboard for thinking a little differently than usual. Can you guess what the question was?
I asked Marcelo:
- And what is your fantasy?
Boom!!! This time Marcelo's eyes opened wide, and he shifted in his chair and laughed out loud.
- "I want to be a pilot!" He said and beamed.
In the next ten weeks, I carefully and determinedly laid at Marcelo's feet the infrastructure that would later help him realize himself and his dreams and live in an authentic way while strengthening his inner dialogue and changing his perspective on things in his life. In one of the sessions, we met with an IDF pilot, who shared his own journey to become a pilot. I believe that in this stage Marcelo's belief has shifted.
About two weeks ago Marcelo sent me a WhatsApp message in the following language:
- "Hey, what's going on? I'm sharing with you that yesterday I passed the last test for a private pilot, and I'm a certified pilot. I want to thank you because you were a significant part of my decision to set off to make my dreams come true. Thank you very much, Perry.
Marcelo attached this photo to the text:
He doesn't know, but at that moment I was extremely excited because I remembered the path Marcelo took to reach this day. I was excited because I knew all the difficulties he experienced. I was excited because he chose to share this significant event with me.
At night before I went to sleep, I looked out the window towards the open sky and said to myself: "What a champion!".
Keep making your dreams come true Marcelo, you already know the way!
Coaching processes for employees and managers do not have to be business-focused. Breakthroughs that employees make in their private lives have been shown to significantly contribute to their performance in the workplace. A balance between life and work is not only limited to the correct division of time between home and office but can also be reflected in the realization of the employee's personal ambitions.
In the same coaching project in which Marcelo took part, five other workers participated and were given the opportunity to make significant breakthroughs in their private lives. The same trend of improved work performance was reported by all those employees.
Corporate Coach for employee engagement and diversity and inclusion