How to develop coaching culture in the workplace
Culture is the key element in holding the ground for any business these days. How the employees of a company perform as a unified whole to better the ROI is the determinant of culture in that particular company. Incorporating a coaching mechanism in your workplace culture is of extreme relevance in today’s competitive world. The days of command and control management are dead and gone. Employees have come to value their individualities, and it is time leaders and managers take optimal measures to help their employees grow and thrive.
According to Gallup’s 2013 study on the global workplace, only 13% of employees worldwide are engaged at work, are psychologically committed to their jobs, or are likely to be making positive contributions to their organizations. Despite this staggering fact, not many business owners(or managers) realize the importance of developing a coaching culture in their workplace. The ones who do, misuse the whole concept of “coaching”. They tend to think that sharing their expertise on something, and providing standardized performance analysis to their employees comes under the wing of coaching. In reality, the truth is far from it. Merely explaining a concept to the employees without asking their personal opinion works negatively for both, the employee and the company. Employees tend to feel demotivated, which gets reflected in their work. Providing a standardized performance analysis also does more bad than good. It doesn’t strike deep with the workforce, and there is left no room for change or growth.
The term “coaching” has a more comprehensive and actionable meaning to it. To truly coach a team, the manager should focus on empowering the employee to act through proper mental and physical support. After the action, the coach(or manager) should provide a customized work analysis for each employee. The analysis should be more than bland facts and figures. Incorporating the employee’s personal growth and emotional satisfaction in the analysis goes a long way in developing a true coaching culture in the workplace.
Developing a coaching culture in the workplace has many qualitative and quantitative benefits.
Recently Gallup wound up their research on companies that have incorporated a good coaching culture in their management. They found that a majority of the groups they studied had a performance increase at the following ranges –
- 10% to 19% increase in sales
- 14% to 29% increase in profit
- 3% to 7% higher customer engagement
- 9% to 15% increase in engaged employees
- 22% to 59% fewer safety incidents
Although these numbers may indicate an increment of a lower range, one cannot ignore the fact that the growth is at place, and these numbers will pace at a meteoric rate once effective coaching mechanisms are developed.
The reasons why a decent coaching culture in the workplace increases the ROI, customer and employee engagement, etc. is due to the following reasons –
- It gives a sense of empowerment to the employees which result in better performance.
- It develops leaders out of workers, making them more responsible and effective.
- It encourages and improves creativity in the workforce, leading to better decision making abilities.
- Workforce engagement helps in creating a sense of oneness and unity in the team, leading to better performances and higher satisfaction levels.
The steps you should take to develop coaching culture in your workplace are –
Create a proper plan – Creating a well devised and a proper plan is the beginning of any organizational strategy. Before beginning to create a coaching culture strategy, you must address certain concerns – why exactly do you need to have a coaching culture? Do you want to create the culture from within the organization or outsource professionals for the same? If the culture is to be created from within, how exactly are you going to create the right strategy? And most importantly, what is the existing culture in your workplace? Answers to all these questions will give you a good idea about how to create the right strategy for the development of a coaching culture without disrupting the existing work environment.
Lead by example – This is the one thing managers(or business owners) must bear in mind while developing a coaching strategy in their workplace. A team is only as good as the leader of that team. And, a good leader always leads by example. You have to understand and respect the value of a coaching culture. Start internal conversations around it, and involve your team at every step of the way. You have to become a good coach, to inculcate the same value in your team. The culture of any organization is dependent on the personality of the manager(or owner) of that organization. Make sure you incorporate the qualities of a good coach in your character to reflect the same in your team.
Measure the outcome – Once you have put your coaching culture strategy to action, it is time to measure and assess the outcomes quantitatively and qualitatively. Collect the information and statistics of the time-frame post the implementation of your strategy and compare the before and after scenarios. If you have properly implemented a good plan, you are bound to see positive results. If you do not get the desired results, analyze the areas where you went wrong. Was it the failure to inculcate qualitative values of coaching? Are your leaders not adept enough? Did you make sure that the culture seeped till the bottom of your chain-of-command? Ask these relevant questions, and improve upon the whole process. Miracles don’t happen in a day or two. Create an extensive and long term strategy, and work on it till you start seeing positive results.
With the statistical evidence available, and the deeper emotional reasons prove that creating a coaching culture in the workplace is no short of a necessity. Interpreting the right meaning of the term “coaching culture” is the first step of this long process. The rest will happen, as you keep asking the right questions within the organization and address those concerns effectively.