The Importance of Management Coaching


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When you think of coach­ing, what comes to mind? Most likely, you auto­mat­i­cally think of some­one lead­ing their sports team to a cham­pi­onship, right? Now, while a coach is some­one we often asso­ciate with sports, coaches are also man­agers and men­tors in the work­place, guid­ing us to our own pro­fes­sional victory.

Coach­ing is one of the great­est things a man­ager can do for his or her employ­ees, yet it’s often over­looked. The rea­son for this is that many man­agers may feel like they do not have time to coach, or that their employ­ees are doing fine, so there’s no need to coach. While this may seem log­i­cal, the truth is that there is always a need for coaching.

To put it into per­spec­tive, think about your favorite sports team for a minute. Where would that team be if they did not have their coach? What would they do if they didn’t have their coach encour­ag­ing and direct­ing them? For starters, the team, even though each mem­ber is tal­ented, would prob­a­bly feel a lit­tle lost or mis­di­rected. They would prob­a­bly just do what­ever they thought was right, because no one was around to tell them any dif­fer­ent. This is exactly what hap­pens when there’s a team or depart­ment at work with­out a man­ager coach­ing them.

Coach­ing is vital to the suc­cess of the com­pany and to each team or depart­ment. It is through coach­ing that man­agers con­nect with their employ­ees, because it is through coach­ing that they show how much they care. Man­agers show they care by prais­ing employ­ees for what they do right, and they show they care by help­ing employ­ees get on the right track when their per­for­mance is not up to par.

Coach­ing isn’t easy, but it is essen­tial. When it comes to coach­ing, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Praise good work often and use pos­i­tive language.
  • Coach as soon as you see or hear the behav­ior tak­ing place.
  • Give spe­cific feed­back on behav­ior and performance.
  • Treat all employ­ees fairly.
  • Lead by example.
  • Let your employ­ees know that you care.
  • Make coach­ing a priority.

Since find­ing the time seems to be a com­mon obsta­cle to good coach­ing, it’s impor­tant that man­agers don’t view coach­ing as an addi­tion to their job. In real­ity, coach­ing is their job. With man­agers being in very vis­i­ble and influ­en­tial posi­tions, they have the abil­ity to lead their teams to vic­tory, or let their teams fall. No mat­ter how big or small a team may be, the prac­tice of man­age­ment coach­ing is critical.

Coach­ing Tip

It’s a good idea for man­agers to keep track of how often they praise their employ­ees. One way to do this is to start each week with a tally sheet con­tain­ing each employee’s name. This will make it easy for man­agers to note—with a sim­ple tick or tally mark—each time they praise an employee through­out the week. At the end of the week, this infor­mal “praise report” will yield valu­able data about the manager’s coach­ing efforts. This tally sheet will also help to make prais­ing become a habit!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Vasudha Deming
Vasudha Deming is a consultant and author lucky enough to get paid for doing something she loves: helping businesses to thrive by putting values into action. She also organizes athletic races, service projects, community events, and anything else she can get her hands on. When it all gets too stressful, she heads out the door for a long-distance run.


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