““The material on coaching really broke it down so I could understand the process.
I am sure I will be more effective coaching my “second tier” to higher levels of
performance.” ~ William Blanchette, PMP, Booz Allen Hamilton
Business leaders and athletic coaches know the importance of mental health and well
being when it comes to performance of their employees and team. These leaders and
coaches also know the dynamics of groups, the personality differences, can affect
group cohesion, including the personality type of the leader or coach in regards
to the team make-up.
Many project managers and team leaders actively pursue coaching methods to employ
within their teams to spur greater performance. Some people are not sure what coaching
is, or how it is any different than telling people what to do and how to do it. Coaching
is definitely not micromanagement. True coaching is an equal partnership between
two or more people for the purpose of finding solutions and bettering performance.
Coaching techniques include "acting as-if", which is a Rogerian method in which people
think of how things would be, if things would be different. They also include brainstorming,
open-ended questioning, paraphrasing, assessments, and goal achievement. Each of
these concepts is important for coaching to be truly successful.
The foundation to effective coaching is communication. Without an ability to actively
listen, to ask open-ended questions, and to attend to the messages they provide,
the coaching process will not be successful. Project managers attending the Coaching
in the Workplace workshop have shared their horror stories of "coaching" in the past.
One person mentioned that a company she worked for hired "coaches". These people
walked around the building in white polos with the word Coach embroidered on one
side of their shirt. What did these people do? They were managers who walked around
to the employees, told them what was going wrong, told them why it was wrong, and
how to correct. They were not coaches, they were managers. According to the project
managers, they were micromanagers! These project managers had a bad taste in their
mouths when it came to "coaching." Fortunately, after the Coaching in the Workplace
workshop, they talked about how their views have positively changed in regards to
the coaching methods.
For more information on coaching, don’t hesitate to view our Benefits, and Tips pages.