The Progress Coaching Blog

30 Second Coaching

August 5, 2013 Posted by : Tim Hagen
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30 Second Coaching Works!

30 Second coaching is designed to be short positive reinforcement, direct, high energy approach to building and sustaining change with repeatable, short bursts.  No new concepts are taught, this is strictly used as positive reinforcement to encourage progress.  Keys to successfully accomplishing this approach are to be specific to the issue that prompted the coaching feedback, do NOT mix messages, and use a positive adjective like “fantastic” or “great”.  For example if an employee just had a great customer call, stop by his desk and say: “Bob, you did a great job of really listening to that customer’s issues.  Keep it up”.  Once you have delivered the coaching feedback just walk away. Don’t confuse the message by standing around and chatting about other topics.  Remember 30 seconds is positive reinforcement of effort or progress that encourages continued effort and progress.

A client recently told me "Tim, the 30 second coaching technique REALLY works”. The client was needless to say thrilled but it’s funny because it’s such a simple technique but its impact can be tremendous.


This technique essentially teaches someone to provide very specific feedback within 30 seconds that is positive, uses a positive adjective, and feeds the employee's mind with positive reinforcement. Its purpose is to recognize and reward a job well done by an employee.


This client was amazed how the employee walked faster, smiled more, and really engaged with her employees more successfully. I ask the manager "What did you learn from this"? And he said "I obviously do not do this enough".


This is NOT bad or wrong, rather this is every manager's opportunity to get better!

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About Author

Tim Hagen
Tim Hagen

Tim Hagen founded Progress Coaching, a Training Reinforcement Partner Company, in 1997. His entrepreneurial career began in college leading to positions in sales, sales management, and sales training for small and large corporations, and eventually ownership of several training companies. Tim is often a keynote speaker at companies teaching the value of coaching and conversations in the workplace. He possesses a unique combination of hands-on experience, academics, and innovative insight to solve the industry’s most common challenges specific to workplace performance. Tim holds a bachelor’s degree in Adult Education and Training from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.

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