Transformational leadership

Why The Best Leaders Are Also Great Coaches And How To Be One?

An organization’s best resources are its employees. Your organization is as good as your people. You need good people in your organization for it to thrive.
The Ideal Employee is a Unicorn
Of course, one of the best ways is to hire great people in your company. If only it were as simple as hiring perfect people!
Perfection is a myth as are ideal people.
Ideal employees of management caliber, technically sound, ace communicator, deft in office politics, embraces diverse cultures, a true visionary, people manager, and high demand in the job market.
The ideal employee is a rarity. Perhaps, a Unicorn!
The Next Best Alternative
So, what’s your next best option?
To work with what you already have.
Create a healthy organizational ecosystem that identifies and trains people existing in your company showing the most potential.
This is where leadership comes into play.
What Kind of Leader are You?
When we talk of leaders, we are talking about the line and staff managers who hold important roles within the organization, manage a team, and have a busy schedule.
Managers can be classified broadly into two categories: The ones who believe in the power of coaching and the ones who don’t.
The managers in the latter category are missing out on one of the most potent tools of leadership and talent development.
Why is coaching and mentoring so important from a business perspective?
The Business Case for Coaching and Mentoring
Managers in the former category, who believe in the power of coaching are not interested in it because they are nice people.
They coach to get business results.
They see it as an intrinsic, natural part of their leadership role. They genuinely get the business case for coaching and mentoring in an organization.
Coaching and Mentoring are valuable tools for achieving business goals.
Managers use coaching as a strategic tool to retain their best employees who are emerging leaders or the ones who show potential but need a slight push to thrive in the organization.
Organizations are increasingly making the shift from traditional performance management practices to proactive performance development.
To ace the new shift, managers need to ditch their boss avatar and don their Supercoach cape.
The Dangling Conversation
But, the reality doesn’t paint such a rosy, pretty picture after all.
While some managers are naturally great coaches, most managers struggle in this grey area.
Can we talk? is a seemingly innocent and straightforward question.
Not quite so in the organizational context!
Regular, ongoing conversations with the team, which are a crucial component of performance management, can be dreadful for many managers.
Most organizations have a serious problem with performance management, and one of the major solutions is an increased focus on frequent, ongoing performance conversations between the manager and employees. Not just during annual or semi-annual performance reviews.
Many managers struggle with making small talk with their team members. They don’t feel confident adopting and adapting to these new expectations.
They are often left clueless on how to maneuver performance development after their dangling conversations with the team.
Of course, they haven’t received additional support or guidance on how to have these conversations effectively.
Some managers don’t even consider coaching as part of their job. Which makes us wonder if most companies are setting up their managers for failure?
How Managers can excel as Super Coaches
Managers who are also super coaches show distinct traits. Some of them are:
They have a sense of delight in building up people: Great managers genuinely find joy in building up their team members, one by one, and eventually, the whole organization. They believe that people at entry-level positions hold great potential to rise to the top but to achieve that, they must develop their skills. They see themselves as their coaches who help them realize their fullest potential and growth within the organization.
They make the time for coaching: Managers are extremely busy people as they supervise the team, act as a medium between the top management, and lower staff and manage the overall department. But, the ones who believe in the power of coaching make time to help their employees proactively. They view coaching as a ‘must-have’ rather than ‘nice to have’ leadership trait.
They are flexible in their coaching style: Managers who make great coaches adapt their coaching styles according to the employee’s mindset. They know how important it is for the employees to open, engage, and participate in the coaching process. They intelligently read the employees and accordingly adjust their coaching style to bring out the best version of each employee.
They are curious: Curiosity doesn’t kill the cat; it milks it. Most great managers who are also great coaches for their employees share one common trait. They are curious. They are always asking questions to uncover and understand what is going on within the organization — the bottlenecks, where the gaps lie, the opportunities, and how things can be done better. They love digging deeper into their employees’ psyche to gain valuable insights about them. They ask many open-ended questions that help the employees reflect, come up with various possibilities, and the best option at hand. They help them figure out the solution for themselves.
They show a keen interest in human connections: All coaching strategies and methods are bound to have if the manager has not earned employee trust and loyalty. Even if the manager has the best intentions for them, their coaching efforts will fall flat if the employees do not feel connected to their manager. Employees need to feel comfortable enough to freely share their successes, failings, thoughts, and views with their managers. That is why managers who are great coaches establish and develop connections with their employees. They are empathetic and great listeners, both traits which work in their favor when they coach their team.
We at Crossover have always been at the forefront of organizational development, truly believing and understanding the power of coaching and mentoring.
We understand that our managers ought to be at the heart of performance development as they have the greatest impact on driving performance within the organization.
We help managers shift to a Performance Development approach and are invested in helping equip managers about the basics of managerial coaching to lead active performance conversations.
Write to us at or Whatsapp/Call on 8688910359 #leadershiptraining #crossoverleadership #leadershipdevelopment #peopledevelopment

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