One of the major challenges for leaders is how to develop their people. Development is all about improvement in someone’s performance. Unfortunately, most leaders don’t know how to do this core function of leadership. Fortunately, it is easy to learn – given a desire to coach and improve others.
Coaching is a key skill for leaders and the sooner they learn how to coach, the faster their people will grow into high performers. In order to coach others you will need to do the following:
First, you must understand the natural strengths and weaknesses of the person or persons that you will be coaching. There are assessments that can give you this information including coaching tips relative to each individual.
Second, you need to have standards of performance for each position that reports to you. In other words, what accountabilities are tied to a job function. What factors are important to lead to a job well done. What does poor performance look like relative to the job or position. Most organizations stop at a job description which is only an outline of activities or tasks for a position. Accountabilities look at outcomes and results that create a return or value relative to the position.
Third, you need some type of performance priority tracking system. This should be web-based so you can access it anytime day or night, work days or weekends to fill in the data points regarding performance. This is a key component. It can be used to track performance over an extended time period – six months to a full year – and provide you with accurate data to rate the performance of your direct reports.
Finally, feedback meetings, coaching sessions, agreed upon performance improvement plans bring the process full circle. Communication about the progress being made by the person being coached puts the final touches on the coaching process. Mutual agreement concerning improvement needs is the cornerstone for success. The top organizations use these techniques and processes to get their people to the next level of performance.
If you need some help or guidance in any of the above steps to coaching, please contact us. We have been successfully coaching people for over a decade. Call me at 901-757-4434 during 9 to 5 central time to discuss your goals or objectives with coaching yourself or others.