A business leader will need to mentor and train the people in his team to become successful
Business leaders would agree that coaching an employee, let alone an entire team, can be a daunting obligation. Individual and collective personalities may become too complicated to deal with, and in any coaching situation, there are several ways things can go wrong.
However, depending on how you look at it, coaching is a necessary evil. For a team to succeed, its leader must know how to effectively guide and train his people to regulate their performance and to strengthen their motivation to work. The most effective coaches streamline the coaching process into smaller goals and then focus on achieving them while following a 90-day plan.
I myself am a Business Coach, and I know how important it is to be systematic and methodical in achieving goals in order to help my clients become better business leaders, which also makes them better coaches. Below, I’ve listed the essentials to coaching effectively.
Begin by cultivating a genuine relationship with your team
The professional relationship between a manager and an employee only becomes genuine when both parties are motivated to achieve a collective goal, while at the same time helping each other become better people. Anytime a leader’s actions don’t clearly manifest a sense of camaraderie and teamwork, there’s bound to be a disaster.
Of course, trust is the most essential element in a coaching relationship. If trust isn’t established right from the start, making an impact on your employee’s future performance and behavior will be almost impossible. The thing about trust is that it needs to be earned; one should never assume that his title automatically commands trust. Obviously, to build a foundation of trust, you need to have real interest in knowing your team individually and as a group, which leads to the next part.
Lend an ear and save your speeches for later
Some business leaders tend to immediately go into diagnostic mode and try to ‘troubleshoot’ their employees as soon as the coaching sessions starts. If you’re more into prescriptions instead of listening first, you’ll only end up giving feedback that lacks contextual insight.
If you choose to listen — and I mean really listen — first before anything else, you will not only show your team that you care and want to hear from them, but it also reinforces the relationship you’ve built with them. They’ll see your willingness to take into account their sentiments and opinions, and they will, in turn, be willing to work with you to make things better.
If you can, try to concentrate on the positive things and aim for a few goals at a time
Don’t make coaching a ‘roasting’ session where you pick on your employee by only talking about the things he does wrong. A great coach is a great encourager. The foundation of every coaching conversation should be positive in nature. Things will not always be pleasant to talk about, but there’s always something you can say or discuss that promotes encouragement instead of demotivation.
Another key is for the business leader to focus their sights on one goal for each team member at a time. It’s going to be easier for you to assess one’s performance when there’s a singular target laid out, rather than evaluating one person based on unreasonably numerous metrics.
Being genuine is critical. Just because you’re supposed to share positivity doesn’t mean you’re going to have to sugarcoat just to make everything pleasant. You need to be honest and sincere in giving feedback, while maintaining a good balance of positive and negative reinforcement.
Be consistent and stick to your principles
If you really want to make an impact on your team through coaching, you’ve got to maintain a consistent presence that upholds everything you’re trying to instill in them. In business, the mantra “do what I say, not what I do” doesn’t really hold true. Your team needs to see for themselves that you actually believe in the things you’re saying to them when they’re being coached.
It can be easy to move people through words and encouragement, but as soon as they see you doing something that’s not consistent with the philosophies you claim to advocate, it will also be easy for them to forget about everything. Walk the walk.
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