When it comes to coaching, most managers usually stick with two coaching types, one-on-one and group coaching. Both of these are highly effective coaching methods and can be used to get great results. They focus on one to two topics, and use structured activities that complement the targeted areas and challenge the employees. However, using the same few coaching methods over and over can be boring and repetitive. By using a variety of coaching methods, your employees will be more engaged and more accepting of the new information.
Attitudes can impact an employee’s ability to learn and work well with others as well as their customers. That’s why it’s important for managers to focus on developing the right attitude through employee coaching. Attitude is a choice. You cannot change someone’s attitude or instill a positive attitude onto someone who has a negative one, but you can make an impact. Organizations want to develop a culture of positive attitudes, but it is often the missing piece for many organizations and not addressed until they become negative.
Coaching uses questions all the time. Questions are a great way to learn what your employee is thinking and how they would handle certain situations. As a coach, your goal is to lead the employee towards learning, progress, and solutions, while letting the employee discover these solutions for themselves. Questions are a great way to steer employees in the right directions without giving them answers directly.
Employee connectivity is generally overlooked when it comes to coaching. A lot managers may not understand the importance connectivity has, or maybe they just assume that employees develop it all on their own. Some employees will be able to form strong connections in all four categories without any coaching, but connections also need to be maintained. Connectivity is fragile, it can be there one day and gone the next. It is important for managers to continually coach to building and maintaining connectivity. Managers need to coach to connect, meaning they should be mindful of their employees connectivity in each level and how it is improving.
Self-development can be a frustrating subject for coaches. Ultimately, the amount of self-development that an employee does is up to them. What employees might not know is that any self-development they do benefits the entire company. Your job as a coach is to inspire employees to pursue self-development. This is where WIFT comes in.
One question you may ask yourself is, "Why should I coach my employees?" or "Why should my company invest in a coaching culture?"
Coaching your employees to be motivated can be difficult. Motivation comes from within, so its not a surprise when a manager saying, "everyone needs to be more motivated" doesn't help increase motivation at all. Motivation is tricky, not everyone is motivated by the same thing or in the same way, but when everyone is motivated, the results include progress, engagement, and success.
The purpose of coaching is progress. We coach to help employees progress toward their goals and eventually achieve them. Coaching is the means to a successful end. Progress can be seen in many aspects of an employee and their work. Motivation, attitude, engagement, effort, relationships, etc. all show how an employee is progressing, and each of those aspects is developed by coaching. Progress develops from good coaching techniques. Here are 7 coaching techniques to help increase progress.
You attend a workshop with a group of salespeople and at the six hour mark somebody raises their hand to say "Is any way we can keep going this is exhilarating" - gosh I hope you're laughing? One of the toughest areas of talent development are sales teams. They are in a constant battle of achieving results while developing their own talent for revenue as well as career aspirations. What can organizations do to help salespeople achieve their personal goals as well as enable them to produce growing careers? Here's a list of specific suggestions when developing sales teams:
I have found great success in developing salespeople through what we call peer-to-peer coaching. As a manager, you may have two salespeople on your team that need development of a particular sales skill or knowledge around a product that they are selling.
Sales people can have bad years but they need to be honest with themselves. When asking a sales person why they had a down year the typical response is the economy was bad or our marketing was subpar or our industry was in a downturn. You rarely hear “I was not very good at needs-based selling and my negotiation skills are terrible”. Gosh I hope you are laughing! But guess what good sales people sell in tough situations and economies. Here are the three questions you should ask a sales person who is struggling or coming off a down year:
- What are you willing to do to improve in specific areas that will enable you to drive your numbers upward? If they stall you may have an employee NOT vested in getting better and time is now a question whether to invest in them.
- What are the two specific skill or knowledge areas that if improved you feel would elevate your sales to another level. If they cannot answer they are not aware and not even looking in the mirror. This will start the coaching relationship.
- What is something that you were specifically doing at this point on your own that will allow yourself to improve? It’s critical sales people are reading or reviewing material all the time to improve and if not it speaks volumes about their true investment in themselves and their careers.
These questions go to the element of Will and Skill. All too often we tend to throw training at sales staff when underperforming or provide them with mandates to raise their numbers; nevertheless, it does not work. Sales people have to practice consistently and on a scheduled basis for performance to improve that enable numbers to consistently improve.
Your thoughts? Suggestions?
We talk often about coaching employees and constantly helping to develop them into superstar top performers. However, as we have all experienced at one time or another, sometimes it’s not what you say, but how you say it. If not done in a friendly and open way, employees, or anyone for that matter, could become defensive and closed off.