Traditional interventions of training and organisational development are no longer enough to support the leaders of today. In order to sustain high levels of performance and meet the demands of a highly disruptive market place, transforming leaders from being commanders to servants and developing a coaching culture at work is essential.
Managing people and projects is a complex and continuous task for organisations and their leaders. In an attempt to balance performance and productivity with employee engagement and wellbeing, leaders need a new approach that enables everyone in the team to harness their power, help each other and get the job done.
What is a coaching culture?
Developing a coaching culture within an organisation is where leaders adopt a coaching style when managing and communicating with their teams. Traditionally work was a place where staff were advised what to do by their manager and expected to get on with it. Directing employees to reproduce past successes is no longer enough. Instead leaders need to create a safe space at work for their employees to be themselves, give their opinion and share their ideas. Employees want to be heard without the fear of being ridiculed, misunderstood or dismissed. They want to develop and grow with the organisation and be recognised for the contribution they make. All of which a coaching culture can provide.
Also referred to as servant leadership, the onus is on leaders to resource their teams, be non-directive and focus on co-creating trusting and equal partnerships with team members and within the team. Instead of directing the show leaders take a step back and hold the space, allowing the collective energy, talents and skills within the group to flow and individuals to flourish. In other words, leaders focus on how they can help and empower their teams to achieve the organisational objectives whilst benefiting from the learning and growth experienced along the way. Facilitating this new way of working to develop and embed will require on-going support for leaders and their teams.
It is unlikely a company would neglect to support the software systems that its IT infrastructure runs on. However, very often managers and team leaders are appointed to lead multimillion euro projects without been given the necessary backup.
What supports do leaders and their teams need to implement a coaching culture approach?
A coaching culture begins by providing:
• one to one coaching for leaders and all team members,
• team coaching,
• skills training for leaders and their teams in the art of coaching,
• support for internal coaches,
• coaching practice supervision.
Transforming managers into internal coaches who facilitate coaching conversations at work, will develop everyone in the areas of self –awareness, listening skills, rapport, non-directive enquiry, encouragement, accountability and the ability to empower team members to think for themselves and take ownership of their actions.
As the organisation develops a coaching culture, more openness and inclusivity will happen naturally, and as people get real, continuous learning and an insatiable growth mind-set becomes the norm.
Responding quickly to change in innovative and creative ways and staying relevant and useful to customers has never been more important for organisations. This new approach to managing and communicating will develop genuine connections within teams and bring fresh energy into the organisation. As everyone cuts ties with the reliance of being told what to do, and takes the reins of their own contribution and output, individuals and teams will become far more courageous and creative, and organisations will be propelled towards something better than previously ever thought possible.
To learn more about developing leadership and coaching cultures within your organisation contact [email protected]