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FEBRUARY 2018 HR MAGAZINE 19
morning). Instead of jumping to a
negative conclusion when you learn
of a problem or confict, ask yourself
questions like “What else could be
Ask open, empowering questions.
Stay away from yes or no questions.
Instead, make inquiries that begin
with “what” or “how.” For example,
instead of “Do you like your job?,” ask
“What do you like about your job?”
The answers you receive will be much
richer with information and insights
that you can use to move the company forward.
Read articles or take an online
course. A search for “coaching”
on www.coursera.org turns up 149
courses, most of which you can audit
online for free. If you really want
to get serious, check out a formal
coaching program. There are literally
hundreds of them available. And as
long as you’re spending the time and
money, I recommend those accredited through the International Coach
BUILD A COACHING CULTURE
Traditionally, many businesses
have been characterized by a com-mand-and-control style of management that is rapidly becoming less
relevant—and less efective—in the
21st century workplace. Managers
notoriously tell staf what to do
instead of asking how they can help
their direct reports achieve their
goals. Here’s the problem with that
approach: Although employees know
what the business wants, the best
way how to achieve that difers for
each person, says Beth Healy, sales
coach and president of Beth Healy
Consulting in Milwaukee.
“When you have a coaching culture, you are investing in your employees in a way that is about them,”
she says. Coaching allows people
to do their jobs in a way that feels
authentic for them—which makes
them more excited about projects
and thus more likely to successfully
“What works well for one person
doesn’t necessarily work well for the
entire team,” Healy says. For example, let’s say you have an outgoing
salesperson who achieves a goal of
selling 100 widgets by cold-call-ing and knocking on doors. This
approach comes naturally to her.
But if you instruct a more reserved
employee to achieve the same goal
in the same way, he may not be
comfortable with this technique and
won’t be intrinsically motivated.
He will tackle the assignment with
about as much enthusiasm as my
daughter has when eating broccoli.
By coaching each person to fnd
the right approach for them, individual diferences shine through so
that the whole company succeeds.
The resulting formula goes something like this: the company what +
the individual how = an increase in
productivity and revenue.
If you motivate managers by
coaching them, they will feel validated, accepted, challenged and
relieved that they are fnally moving
forward with their teams. The coach
is, in efect, providing an example
for how these leaders can make
their stafs feel the same way. Given
enough time, the domino efect
will continue and employees will
start validating and moving clients,
customers and colleagues forward
as well. And—voilà!—a coaching
culture is born.
Jennifer Currence, SHRM-SCP, is a Tampa, Fla.-based certified professional coach (CPC), HR advisor and SHRM
instructor and the author of the SHRM Competency Series
of books, which includes Applying Critical Evaluation and
Developing Business Acumen.