By U Diverse Global
Ouriel Attal - Coaching an international Male leader
Ouriel Attal is no stranger to diversity and multiculturalism. The son of an immigrant family living in Marseille, France, his roots weave their way through Poland, Italy, Turkey and Algeria. Ten years ago he made the move from France to the Netherlands, and now finds himself in a leadership position spanning the Netherlands and Germany.
When I first met Ouriel for coaching, it was to help him with his leadership skills. He wanted to be better positioned to help lead a diverse, multicultural team to success, and knew that there were some gaps to be filled.
The first gap, interestingly enough, was himself.
Know yourself to know others
Ouriel was very aware of a key aspect of leadership that many miss:
You cannot bring out the best in others, until you truly understand yourself.
“The path to helping other people and managing other people begins within yourself.”
Knowing your own strengths and weaknesses allows you to better position yourself as a support for your team. You can identify the places where you can help personally, and where to defer to others.
But also critically, is to have the right mindset. We worked on transitioning Ouriel’s mindset from that of an individual contributor, to that as someone whose work is to support others. This can be a big hurdle for many trying to take up leadership positions — understanding that it is your role to bring out the best in others, not to personally contribute the most or fix everything.
Leading a diverse team
Ouriel currently manages a team of nine, all from different backgrounds.
Having the mindset of helping others is the perfect starting point — but it’s largely theoretical. The reality of actually needing to lead a team, especially one made of members with different social, cultural, and business backgrounds, presents a series of very practical challenges.
Employ the same sort of coaching tactics he experienced during our sessions, in order to navigate the personal needs of his team.
“There’s a lot of listening, a lot of active listening that you need to do; I think that’s the most important tool of all.
An individual is an individual. Diversity is the individual. We are six billion diverse individuals, and not one is similar to another. That’s why you have to listen.”
Advice to others
Ouriel believes the key role of a leader is to find and cultivate the strengths of his team. To do that, they must be appreciated, and they must be allowed to learn and grow on their own.
To be a leader is to help guide your team to improve themselves as individuals, so the whole team will benefit:
“Don’t always come with a solution. If you come with a solution, you’re not helping others. Your manager may come up with a solution on their own, and they will be grateful to themselves for that. They will learn more from that. Approach questions as an opportunity for coaching.”
U Diverse Global is a human resource consulting agency that focuses on talent management in culturally diverse work environments. We operate on a much more sophisticated level than just providing great HR advice. We also partner with your organization to find the best talents for your business projects. We are a tribe of multicultural, multilingual and multi talented professionals connected to a vast number of external coaches, consultants, facilitators and trainers globally.