There are three very good reasons why leaders should learn how to coach.
First, learning how to coach is an opportunity to find out more about yourself – who you are, what you believe in, how you relate to others in your world. You refine your communication and interpersonal skills which are the cornerstones of developing long-term, trust relationships. Coaching skills teach you how to listen more effectively, how to reflect on what you have heard andhow to respond in the most appropriate way – something that most people believe they do, but don’t! Becoming a coach develops self-awareness which leads to greater insight into your own motives, intentions and philosophy about life and work, and helps you get the balance right for you.
Second, once you have learned more about yourself, learning how to coach others enables you to take them on a similar journey of self-discovery. Using your coaching skills and their knowledge of their own situation and needs, the leader as coach guides their direct reports into deeper insights about how they behave, perform and influence others in their surroundings. Their interpersonal skills are enhanced. They become better team members. They become more self- and socially-aware of how to be an effective member of the team and organisation.
Third, many organisations now require their leaders to coach and be coached as part of their daily duties. As the opportunity arises, the leader as coach takes their direct reports aside to discover what’s going on for them, and how things can improve. This may be in relation to a personal situation at work (e.g. conflict, non-cooperation or collaboration) or a professional matter (e.g. lack of motivation, decline in performance, non-engagement). By coaching their direct reports the leader as coach can assist them in seven different yet related ways. Direct reports can:
1. become better people (behavioural change);
2. achieve increased productivity (performance improvement);
3. become more engaged in their work (happier, more satisfied employees)
4. feel understood and supported (achieve a real sense of belonging to the team and
5. be more motivated to actually come to work each day and give their very best (retain talented employees);
6. feel empowered to put forward ideas and suggestions for improvement of systems and processes etc. (to grow the business and be an integral part of that growth); and
7. have a greater say in their own future, career and employment prospects.
For all these reasons, leaders who are able to coach i.e. have the skills to coach, have the will and motivation to coach, and the dedication to help others grow, will find that not only will they help others succeed but that the doors to opportunity and promotion will open for them as well as they become known as an inspirational leader and exceptional coach.
To learn more about Leadership Coaching and the benefits that it can bring to your business or team, contact the Australian Institute of Professional Coaches on1300 309 360 or email firstname.lastname@example.org . We look forward to speaking with you soon.