The culture of coaching as a basis for career growth

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The culture of coaching as a basis for career growth

Nowadays many companies lack qualified professionals. While some companies lure them by promises of high wages and/or great working conditions, others prefer to grow their own personnel. However, in both cases, it is necessary to provide employees with professional growth and to clearly outline their individual perspectives.

Selecting a method of employee management is an individual process. Here everything depends on the features of the company, its financial capacity, and even on top managers’ personal preferences. Various certification, MBO, and activities aimed at the development of corporate culture and increasing of loyalty (training, team building, team integration programs, coaching, etc.) are only a part of what modern companies use. The following discussion focuses on coaching – the invention that is as effective as it is ambiguous.

What’s so unusual about it?

“We consider coaching to be another fashionable instrument of employee development. This position is not quite correct, moreover, it is associated with a certain risk. Perceiving coaching only as a knowledge management system, a kind of panacea, we are bound to get disappointed. Scientific evidence and research suggest that people tend to put their own ideas into practice more effectively and efficiently than somebody else’s. Therefore, we believe that coaching is the tool that allows you to reveal the potential of employees in their daily work. In short, coaching is a series of questions to the employee that will lead him or her to an independent solution of the problem. Often coaching helps the person to go beyond the habitual thinking and eventually take on more complex tasks, “- says Richard Williams, personnel development manager at “NestLead”.

Coaching conversation can be described as a sequence of actions, which is denoted by the acronym GROW:

Goal – setting the goal;

Reality – the study of reality, assessment of the situation;

Options – looking for opportunities for solving the problem;

What’s next – what comes next.

In reality, this often looks like a normal conversation between a manager and a subordinate, during which the manager does not provide ready-made solutions, and asks the employee what he or she would do to solve some problem. There is also such a thing as group coaching. In this case, the management sets the goal aims and the coach (in which case he or she is called a facilitator) develops and implements a session where the whole team comes to a solution. This way, there is a mutual agreement between the members of the team a shared responsibility for the results.

Implementation of coaching traditionally happens in several steps.

If the management decides that this kind of standard is required in the company, then the process begins with the definition of the tasks that will be solved with the help of coaching. Even at the early stages, managers should have some experience in coaching. They can easily get it with coaching training. 

At the second stage, you would form the list of business processes that are to be changed in connection with the introduction of the coaching system. All innovations are consistent with your company’s HR-processes. At this point, the majority of managers must have experience in coaching sessions, especially if it is required to implement the whole coaching culture and not its individual elements.

The third stage is training top managers in conducting coaching sessions with their subordinates. That is what distinguishes coaching from a simple working relationship.

Next, it is important for the knowledge gained during the training to become a working tool that any manager can use. To do this, you must think through and implement the system of maintenance of coaching culture in each individual unit, with the support of the HR department.

As a result, the company significantly improves the quality of communication, increases staff’s motivation and the level of mutual assistance in both professional and personal matters. People who share the philosophy of coaching are comfortable and fun to work with; they are more likely to do their best, are focused on career development, and are more committed to business values.

The final fifth stage is aimed at maintaining the coaching management system. At this point, it should be 100% integrated into the core business processes of the company and operate without external support.

According to the Building a Coaching Culture 2014 study, the average annual revenue growth in companies with a strong coaching culture at the end of 2013 was higher than in the ones with traditional types of management organizations (60% vs. 40%). Moreover, the companies that practice coaching have a higher level of employee involvement – approximately 13% more.

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