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Coaching for Success
Coaching is perhaps the most effective method of increasing performance available to managers, team leaders, and colleagues. This article defines coaching and outlines a process for effective coaching. Coaching Defined Coaching is perhaps the most effective method of increasing performance available to managers, team leaders, and colleagues. If you wish to improve the skills of your employees, you must plan to observe them and provide them with feedback. If you’re like most supervisors or managers, you have limited time and are looking for employees to become proficient – and independent – faster. Entelechy’s Coaching Model is designed to help you do just that! The Coaching Model is appropriate for developing the skills of employees if the employee is willing to improve.
Coaching should not be used as a softer, gentler version of corrective action; if a performance problem occurs, you will want to use the Problem Solving model. The Coaching Model is based on several important principles: 1. There are two primary goals to coaching: • To improve performance. • To help employees gain the ability to self-assess. 2.
It is important that the coaching sessions follow a predictable process. This will help the coachees feel more comfortable and relaxed, which will help to ensure they actively participate in these sessions. It is for this reason that we suggest that you share the coaching model with your employees prior to coaching. 3. Coaching is a planned development process and should not be a surprise. 4. The way you open the conversation sets the tone for what will follow. 5. After we open the conversation using our initial probe, we discuss positives first and areas for improvement last. Beginning with positives first is motivational and accomplishes the following: • The goal is to have employees increase their performance.
If they are not in a positive frame of mind, they will not be open to this change. • Reinforces good behavior and ease into the coaching session. • Builds self-esteem. 6. Ending the coaching session with a discussion of areas for development ensures that they are focusing on those areas. 7. Always give the coachee a chance to self-assess before you offer your insights. Encouraging self-assessment is positive for several reasons: • It encourages improvement even when you are not coaching. • It allows you to determine why the employee may not be performing as desired; they may not know that they’re doing something incorrectly. • It builds self-esteem.
• It increases the chances that behavior will change. 8. Reinforce correct self-assessment. 9. Defer or redirect inappropriate or incorrect self-assessment. 10. We focus coaching on only two strengths and two areas for development. Limiting the discussion is important and accomplishes the following: • Increases the coachee’s ability to reach proficiency. • Focuses on the most important issues. • Other issues can be addressed after some progress has been made on the most important issues first.
11. If an employee is not identifying areas that you identified (or has identified them incorrectly), use increasingly specific questions to allow the employee to self-assess if possible. This allows you to determine if the employee doesn’t know what’s expected, doesn’t have the skill, or simply chooses not to demonstrate the skill. The Coaching Model at Work Now let's turn our attention to Entelechy's Coaching Model in practice. Step 1: Open the Conversation The coach opens the conversation with a general question; this helps the coach get a sense for the accuracy of the coachee’s self-assessment. If the coachee responds with, “that was the best call ever” and you thought that the call was poor, you know that you’ll have to adjust your coaching conversation. Step 2: Probe for What Went Well The coach asks the coachee what went particularly well and listens for the responses. By identifying what went well first, a positive tone for the coaching session is set. We want to make sure that the coachee continues doing these things.