The Secret To Successful Coaching

SeminarBusiness coaching has gone from fad to fundamental. In reality, few managers know how to make coaching work.

To improve the quality and impact of your coaching efforts, start by giving your individual managers tangible information about how to coach their direct reports. For coaching to be effective, they need to understand why they are coaching and what specific actions they need to take.

Coaching concentrates on helping another person learn in ways that let him or her keep growing afterward. It is based on asking rather than telling, on provoking thought rather than giving directions and on holding a person accountable for his or her goals.

Baseding on the 2010 Executive Coaching Survey, conducted by Conference Board, 63 % of organizations use some form of internal coaching, and half of the rest plan to. Coaching is a small part of the job description for most managers. Nearly half spend lower than 10 % of their time coaching others.

Generally speaking, the purpose is to increase effectiveness, broaden thinking, identify strengths and development needs and set and achieve challenging goals. Research from the Center for Creative Leadership has boiled down the skills managers need to coach others into five categories:

Effective coaching is about achieving goals. The coach helps the employee set meaningful ones and identify specific behaviors or steps for meeting them.

Challenging reasoning and beliefs. Thinking about thinking is an important part of the coaching process. Coaches ask open-ended questions, push for alternative solutions to problems and encourage reasonable risk-taking.

Sustaining and motivating. As partners in learning, coaches listen carefully, are open to the perspectives of others and allow employees to vent emotions without judgment. They encourage employees to make progress toward their goals, and they recognize their successes.

As your coaching processes and goals become more consistent and more highly valued, in-house coaching will take root.

According to the 2010 Executive Coaching Survey, conducted by the Conference Board, 63 % of organizations use some form of internal coaching, and half of the rest plan to. For coaching to be effective, they need to understand why they are coaching and what specific actions they need to take.

Helping others to gain self-awareness and insight is a key job for a coach. You provide timely feedback and help clarify the behaviors that an employee would like to change.

Building the relationship. It’s easier to learn from someone you trust. Coaches must effectively establish boundaries and build trust by being clear about the learning and development objectives they set, showing good judgment, being patient and following through on any promises and agreements they make.

It’s not surprising that managers feel they don’t have enough time for coaching. Even if you make learning and coaching explicit priorities, time is tight for everyone. As your coaching processes and goals become more consistent and more highly valued, in-house coaching will take root.

Always link the purpose and results of coaching to the business. Managers have to know the business case for coaching and developing others if they’re to value it and use it effectively. Set strategic coaching goals, tactics and measures for the organization as well as including coaching as an individual metric.

All managers need some guidance on the whys and hows of coaching, but most organizations can’t afford to train them on a large scale, so the least you can do is make an effort to create a culture of coaching. Set strategic coaching goals, tactics and measures for the organization as well as including coaching as an individual metric.

When you select the right people and spend for their development and position them as coaching advocates, you plant the seeds for expanding coaching well beyond the individual manager-direct report relationship. Your good example demonstrate effective coaching both formally and informally, and they help motivate others to use and improve their own coaching capabilities.

You should seed your organization with coaching role models. All managers need some guidance on the whys and hows of coaching, but most organizations can’t afford to train them on a large scale, so the least you can do is make an effort to create a culture of coaching. The key is to create a pool of manager-coaches who can be good example, supporters and sustainers of a coaching mindset.

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