The way we lead our organizations is going through a revolution. A dramatic and wide-reaching change is taking place in the way leadership is being practiced. As social and emotional intelligence practices inform current thinking, leaders are shifting away from the command-and-control leadership of the past and breaking down the hierarchical barriers that were established way back during the industrial revolution.
Leadership is shifting from command-and-control to coaching.
As organizations realize the importance of employee engagement, they are looking towards new ways of inspiring and motivating their staff. Two strategic areas that are having a tremendous impact directly involve coaching: managers are becoming coaching leaders, and coaching as a practice is being scaled across organizations.
Without coaching, it’s difficult to ask employees to set flexible goals, revise them often, and ‘stretch’ within their jobs. As leaders are demanding their employees assume greater responsibility, function more autonomously, develop more expertise, and make better judgments, they will need to provide frequent and routine coaching.
Benefits of Coaching
If leaders truly want to motivate their workforce, build an organization of high performers, and attract and retain millennials, they will need to invest in coaching. Leadership coaches are becoming more common and they are no longer retained just for “fixing” leaders who need help. Successful leaders are improving their effectiveness by working with coaches and are becoming more mindful empathetic coaches themselves.
If organizations invest in coaching, then they are more likely to implement practices that will motivate their workforce and encourage high performance.
Working with a coach is a powerful way to make behavioral changes. Employees will benefit from 2 types of coaching: scheduled and on-the-spot. Both are critical, and when combined, have been shown to increase effectiveness as much as 30-50%.
In one coaching study, training alone increased productivity by 22%–but when training was paired with coaching, productivity increased by 88%. A study by Metrix Global on a Fortune 500 firm found that executive coaching resulted in an ROI of 529%. A second study by the International Coaching Federation reported that the median return was seven times the initial investment.
Well-coached clients know when they are performing well and when they are not, and will make necessary adjustments independently of the coach. They will also continually try to find ways to improve, by practicing more, by watching others, or by learning something new. As leaders develop a talent for fostering positive behaviors in their direct reports, the individuals they lead will have living breathing models of effective behavior.
Are You a Coaching Leader?
coaching (verb): a thought-provoking, creative partnership that inspires maximum potential
leader (noun): a person who motivates others to achieve purposeful outcomes
Questions to Deepen Thinking
How is coaching working in your organization?
What will becoming a coaching leader get you?
What are the consequences of not becoming a coaching leader?