Six ways to turn man­agers into coaches again

Finweek English Edition - - INSIGHT - BY KEITH FERRAZZI

The role of t he man­ager is c u r r e nt l y u nder­goi ng a trans­for­ma­tion. His­tor­i­cally, man­agers em­braced the role of coach and men­tor. Through in­for­mal con­ver­sa­tions over a cof­fee break or more for­mal con­ver­sa­tions such as one-on-one meet­ings and small group gath­er­ings, man­agers t rans­ferred i nsight and un­der­stand­ing to em­ploy­ees.

But to­day, tighter bud­gets, f lat­ter or­gan­i­sa­tions, a heavy work­load and too many di­rect re­ports of­ten leave man­agers with­out the time to shoul­der the re­spon­si­bil­ity of be­ing coach and men­tor. Yet this func­tion re­mains crit­i­cal to the long-term health and pro­duc­tiv­ity of an or­gan­i­sa­tion.

When r e s e a r c her s a s k e d t op ex­ec­u­tives how they view train­ing and de­vel­op­ment pro­grammes, ex­ec­u­tives over­whelm­ingly said the most ur­gent prob­lem t hey face is get­ting t heir man­agers to coach em­ploy­ees. What’s more, ex­ec­u­tives said they are des­per­ate to find and de­ploy ef­fec­tive so­lu­tions for this chal­leng­ing is­sue.

HERE ARE SIX PRAC­TI­CAL TIPS TO HELP MAN­AGERS SLIP BACK INTO THE ROLE OF COACH AS EF­FORT­LESSLY AND EF­FI­CIENTLY AS POS­SI­BLE:

1. USE REG­U­LAR ONE-ON-ONE CHECK-INS Reg­u­lar check-ins, as op­posed to wait­ing for the an­nual per­for­mance re­view, al­low you to work more col­lab­o­ra­tively with your di­rect re­ports. You can of­fer in­sight, guid­ance and sug­ges­tions to help them solve prob­lems and stay on track to achieve their pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment goals. Some man­agers make it a point to sched­ule reg­u­lar phone con­ver­sa­tions or in-per­son meet­ings on a monthly or weekly ba­sis. 2. EN­COUR­AGE MORE PEER-TO-PEER COACH­ING Peer-to-peer coach­ing of­fers some of the rich­est, most valu­able learn­ing in an or­gan­i­sa­tion. To in­cor­po­rate more of this type of learn­ing, use your reg­u­lar staff meet­ing as a col­lab­o­ra­tive prob­lem­solv­ing ses­sion. This builds co­he­sion in your team and inspires them to think cre­atively about how to face cer­tain chal­lenges. It’s also an easy way for you to coach mul­ti­ple peo­ple in one set­ting at the same time.

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