Creating a coaching climate

The dream environment of many an organisation is one where managers and employees are able to communicate consistently and openly around their personal, professional and organisational performance and development. And there’s good reason for that aspiration: research shows it can make a significant difference to an organisation’s development and long-term performance.

This might seem like something of a utopian scenario, but with an effective, well-structured coaching programme in place, that level of communication can become embedded within the very fabric of your organisation. Establishing the right coaching climate for that programme to flourish, however, is far from straightforward and requires time, effort and involvement at all levels of the organisation. Here are three steps to help you along the way:

1. Seek top-level commitment
The first step towards a consistent coaching climate is to identify one or more senior leaders to be the flag-bearers for your approach. As well as being someone others point to as an example of a great coach and inspiration to their team, these individuals should be acting in a way that gives the right message about coaching across the organisation; they should be people who will spread the word and commit to tackling any barriers or opposition that could arise along the way.

2. Spread the skill
With the right role models in place, there need to be measures in place to allow enthusiasm and understanding of coaching to filter through the organisation. This means making training opportunities readily available across all levels while actively encouraging employees to engage with your approach. Don’t assume this will happen automatically: managers need skilling up in order to deliver effective coaching conversations to their teams who will in turn require training in order to receive their full benefit.

3. Stop and take stock
Once integrated, it’s important to revisit your coaching climate at regular intervals. Like any new policy or strategy, it requires regular attention to see what’s going well and where things could be working better. Think of it as a garden, one that requires regular watering and upkeep in order for the plants within it to grow and flourish.

When it comes to introducing a coaching climate to your organisation there really is no quick fix. Interest and engagement in coaching need to be cultured throughout the organisation along with an understanding of how to deliver and receive it. Rest assured: with the right building blocks in place, there’s every chance of success.

10 Jun 2015
mentors, management,
Reference: Abintegro
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