By guest author: Michael has been working in marketing for almost a decade and has worked with a huge range of clients, which has made him knowledgeable on many different subjects. He has recently rediscovered a passion for writing and hopes to make it a daily habit. You can read more of Michael’s work at Qeedle.
In athletics, the role of a coach is extremely valued. However, this belief seldom extends to the workplace. Most people don’t see managers as mentors – only as overseers.
In truth, coaching is just as vital in the workplace as it is in sports. Consistent coaching helps with employee retention, knowledge transfer, and skill improvement. On top of these advantages, it can also improve the performance of the entire team.
This is precisely why more and more of today’s managers are ditching the authoritarian style of leadership in favor of career coaching. Managers who coach workers instead of commanding them are experiencing numerous benefits, with increased performance being the biggest one.
In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at coaching techniques that improve employee performance and build a talented, agile workforce.
Offer Consistent Feedback
For an employee, improving performance can be very difficult without consistent feedback. Therefore, scheduling time to meet with workers individually is essential.
Once you’ve acknowledged areas a particular employee excels in, you can then identify what needs to be improved. Point out the skills that need improvement and encourage the employee to work on them.
Keep in mind that in coaching, the importance of feedback is not one-sided.
The whole team should practice positive feedback. Workers should always be ready to offer guidance or advice when a co-worker is struggling. Slowly but surely, this will create a feeling of mutual respect, and everyone will be rooting for each other to succeed.
Build Employee Confidence
An essential part of coaching employees is building their personal and professional confidence. By rewarding their accomplishments, you’ll be instilling newfound confidence in your workers.
During employee reviews and feedback sessions, always make sure to highlight the good work they’ve done. Personalize your compliments with specific examples.
Point out all the things you liked about how an employee has handled a particular situation. Moreover, never forget to acknowledge when a worker does something that’s not expected of them, going above and beyond their job description.
Boosting employee confidence is crucial. Besides making your employees feel good, it will also keep them motivated to work towards company success.
Welcome Employee Ideas and Opinions
An open line of communication with superiors makes workers feel more appreciated and valued. As a coach, you should always welcome their opinions and ideas.
Ask your employees for their opinions on new projects and recent changes. Be receptive to their concerns or comments by practicing active listening.
However, keep in mind that a working environment where a more light-hearted approach to issues isn’t allowed keeps employees from offering feedback. When they’re not afraid of expressing their opinions in any way they want, workers are far more invested and committed to the company.
Push Workers Outside Their Comfort Zone
While being careful not to put too much pressure on workers, you should also try moving them outside their comfort zones.
Whenever you notice the potential in a worker, challenge them. Do this by putting the employee in charge of a special project or by offering them a more important role.
As a coach, try to capitalize on the team’s past experiences and skillsets. Help workers refine and strengthen both their soft and hard skills by assigning individual tasks.
Just like sports coaches unify team players, managers need to help workers work better together. Use coaching to take things one step further – encourage your staff to collaborate in the workplace.
We all know that every individual worker brings a unique set of skills to the table. When co-workers collaborate on a regular basis, they learn different techniques and approaches. This won’t only strengthen the individuals, but also the team as a whole.
Besides improved performance, team collaboration also builds company morale. Create a more productive and positive working environment by encouraging collaboration and strong relationships.
Accept Failure Once in a While
Failure to discuss failure destroys the culture of growth. While condoning failure certainly isn’t in your best interest, accepting it as a part of life is bound to take the pressure off your workers.
The thing that makes all the difference is how you respond to employee shortcomings. Avoid ridiculing and overreacting at all costs. If you do have to criticize, do it constructively. Make plans on how to avoid future mistakes together.
Never let failures or mistakes go unnoticed, though. You’d be lowering job performance expectations and standards. Instead, acknowledge shortcomings to foster a culture of growth.
Although it takes extra time initially, coaching as a leadership style always brings results that are worth the investment.
When managers are supportive and help workers develop new skills, as well as offer consistent and constructive feedback, employee performance is maximized.