We provide two quite distinct services under coaching - We help managers to become better coaches and we coach individual managers to either address particular issues or to realize their potential.
Coaching Role of Manager
A well researched and documented fact is that talented people leave managers and not organisations. Therefore managers are increasingly expected to have a coaching style of leadership. What good people managers have always done is know their people and coach them to become more skilled, more experienced, more able, more productive, and more marketable. This is now being expected of all managers as the people resource and what people do at work is now one of the key competitive differentiators.
Coaching Skills for Managers
So we provide coaching skills development for managers to enable them to become better coaching style leaders and are able to develop and release the innate competence in their people.
We find that a key learning point for managers is understanding that the solution must come from the person being coached and the manager must avoid the temptation to give the solution. Managers often understand coaching as giving guidance and it is a major point of insight for them that their role is to use questioning techniques to help the coachee arrive at the solution themselves. This has the tremendous power of building the coachees own capability which he or she can then apply to other things as well. (refer to outline)
The Coaching Mirror
We have developed a practical tool for giving managers feedback from those around them experiencing their coaching behaviour.
It can be applied in either a 180° or 360° format. Our instrument measures behaviour in the following dimensions:
- Skills – the right questions, probing and paraphrasing.
- Empathy – is concerned about me, understands my world.
- Trust – discretion and conversations are confidential to us.
- Expertise – rich experience, knows our company, professional functional knowledge.
- Space – makes time, important conversations without time pressure.
- Solutions – helps me see what I need to do.
We help individual leaders and managers address a particular challenge or develop and implement an action plan to realize their business leadership potential.
Our international coaches in the network are skilled at working with individual leaders to help them overcome blind spots and gap areas or to develop and execute a broad personal development plan.
Critical steps are:
- Contracting and chemistry fit check – agreeing the scope and confirming the coach fits.
- Needs analysis and personal action plan – facilitating the person identifying the issues to be addressed often with the help of psychometric or other feedback instruments to bring objective understanding and building a practical plan.
- Plan Implementation and follow-up – supporting the person as needed and agreeing key review milestones with appropriate indicators of progress.
Coaching and Mentoring
These are often understood as meaning the same thing by managers and leaders and are used interchangeably. But for us there is a clear distinction to be made.
Coaching is about helping another person find their own solution to a problem or issue. It is about asking the right questions to trigger the other person to think for themselves and see new insights. It is not about giving them a solution.
Mentoring is about giving another person the benefit of our own experience by sharing stories and examples of how we have tackled particular problems and issues. It is usually from a more experienced and senior manager to a less experienced and junior manager. But not always as more senior and business experienced managers are finding value in being mentored these days on technology and social media use by younger and more junior managers.