A Gallup survey discovered that, instead of directing their employees, great managers weekly coach them to higher performance.
Coaching benefits the employees, the managers, and the organization. Coaching is collaborative, building stronger relationships between the managers and their employees. The manager gives the employees guidance, authority, and resources to perform at their potential. The employees accept responsibility for their performance and know they will be held accountable. The organization benefits from higher employee engagement, productivity, and results.
Managers need to know how to engage and guide employees to achieve their potential.
Unfortunately, many managers don’t coach for many reasons, including:
(1) they were never coached themselves, so they don’t have a model of what to do;
(2) they don’t understand the value of coaching, preferring a different management style.
(3) they don’t feel they have the time, since it takes more time to coach than to simply tell an employee what to do and how to do it;
(4) they were never taught how to coach; and
(5) they have never had the opportunity to practice and become comfortable with coaching.
The solution is training and experience with coaching. The managers need a model, support for the value of coaching, and practice so that they see the time invested is worthwhile.
A peer learning group that focuses on coaching can provide just-in-time training, practice, reinforcement, and support. In the first session, the managers can learn why coaching is important and how to do it. Since this is a collaborative learning process, the members can then coach each other.
The next step is immediately using what they have learned. They can experiment by practicing using coaching techniques with their employees for a month, with the weekly support, encouragement, and reinforcement from the other group members. The members can also hold each other accountable for testing coaching as a management style.
When the peer learning group reconvenes after that month, the members can debrief their experience, learn from the other members’ experiences, and come to some conclusions regarding the value of coaching and the best way to coach going forward.
Managers can’t achieve their program goals without highly engaged and productive employees. As the Gallup survey showed, coaching is the best way to do this.
If your managers aren’t coaching, help them by contacting Deborah Laurel at The Peer Learning Institute: email@example.com.
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