How to Deliver more Results by Coaching Others
Management’s greatest challenge is delivering results through others.
Average managers manage processes; great managers manage people.
You’ll go further if you spend less time focused on what you want and more time focusing on how to get there.
Cultivating your coaching skills enables you to deliver more results through others by focusing on execution.
The shift to coach
Coaching conversations, whether spontaneous or planned, engage employees and enhance performance. Engaged employees deliver results.
- Employee engagement begins when you stop giving answer and start asking questions. Your knowledge is dangerous when it motivates others look to you for answers. Your knowledge, on the other hand, enables you to craft wise questions that lead others to find their own insights. You heighten engagement by engaging others.
- Coaching shifts you from focusing on problems and opportunities to thinking about the way others think. Coaching-managers realize people not processes and procedures deliver results. Focus on them while they focus on issues.
- You decide less they decide more. Manager-coaches help people think their own way through challenges, choices, and opportunities.
- Stop listening to solve. Manager-coaches give responsibility rather than taking it.
- The greatest quality of a manger-coach is curiosity expressed in open ended questions.
The shift to coaching is deceptively easy to explain but counter intuitive to execute. The authors of, “Coaching for Engagement,” believe shifting from listening to solve to listening to ask questions is the hardest challenge you face.
Four wins for manager-coaches.
- Better working relationships.
- Creative ideas and innovation.
- Less work for you as employees take initiative.
- Opportunity to invest in the development and growth of others.
This post is inspired by and based on my conversation with Bob Hancox and Russell Hunter.
What have you learned about effectively coaching employees?
I agree that asking write questions actually force you to seek solutions. So, it is the questions and not the solutions that make system and organization effective. Today, the most important thing in the organization, managers need to do is to create awareness about the vision and mission of the organization. People in most of the cases do not know about it. Even they think that this is not their job. It is the job of top level management. So,creating awareness is first part. Secondly, managers should inculcate a feelings of togetherness. Employees should not feel that they are inferior to anyone. So, the feeling of brother wood is very much required to bring effectiveness and loyalty.
Secondly, I have seen, that employees do not get their benefits and rights in time. This is very critical and affect the motivation level of employees. So, efficient process to deal with employees benefits and perks should be sound and timely. This plays a major role to make organization effective.
The thrust of this post – do ask don’t tell – is maybe the best advice you could give. It’s axiomatic in manufacturing that the solution is usually within 10 feet of the problem, meaning the people working closest to it already know what should change.
I make it a practice to walk through the plants every day, and to try to talk to each of my 120 or so employees at least once a week. I’ll ask them their opinions about things I’m working on, and I’m often surprised as the good input I get.
Conversely, I make it a point to limit my structured interaction with the supervisors who work for me to once a day. They have unlimited access by e-mail, phone, or walking in. This gives them all the freedom they choose to use, based on the coaching I gave early in the day. My coaching method: similar to the 5 whys, I keep asking questions, gathering information, and usually in the process of organizing the information they arrive at a solution. Often they know when they ask, but they want validation, or maybe just permission. But I repeatedly tell them I don’t know their area as well as they do, so I can’t give an answer but I can help find one.
Nice lean play on the phrase Greg!
Very cool that you have Gemba walk going on too…even that visual presence is an element of coaching/leading.
Never underestimate the power of a well-placed question. “Aha” moments are the precursor to incredible advancement.
I wholeheartedly agree with this post. We can all be coach when the situation calls for it.
“Coaching conversations, whether spontaneous or planned”…how bout ‘planned spontaneity’–in that you know there will be moments coaching where you know you will have opportunities to improv, that is part of your work, so you actually think about that person or the process in advance, but don’t necessarily bring it up. That means you are engaged in that person’s success even when you are not in a face to face interaction.
Again, a good post to spread positivity and motivate a go-getter to become an effective leader. .
Effective coaching bring desired results and to remain effective one has to be people-centric. Seek new ideas before deciding, allow greater freedom to operate and build a winning team are some of the good ways to ensure fine performance and growth.
A coach carries the basic responsibility of delivering results by exemplary teachings, constant motivation, toughest discipline and bringing a winning spirit for all under him. He shall carry the respect of his followers if he is fair and transparent in his approach. He is a pathfinder and makes people believe in their capabilities to break their earlier records to touch newer heights.
I have to disagree that great managers “manage people”. Controlling managers manage people (or at least delude themselves that they do!) Great managers manage resources so that people can be freed to do great things. The purpose of coaching therefore is to use your coaching skils to create the space for your people to soar. John Whitmore talks about coaching as the process of raising awareness and responsibility within the coachee. A good coach-manager will do both.
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“A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.” Lao Tzu