Leaders Need to become Coaches
As we look at the role of a coach…one to support growth, learning, ask insightful questions, ultimately to help bring out the best of us….doesn’t this also apply to leaders in our organization? Organizations grow by moving to a culture that embraces learning, creativity, and innovation, and engages employees. A coaching culture in organizations is one that would support a creative and rich, productive environment through the use of coaching leadership styles.
How does coaching relate to teaching? First, effective teaching does does always equate to direct teaching. Teaching is often perceived as providing directions to follow, versus helping a learner access his or her own wisdom to learn. Coaching is an effective way for people to learn.
In organizational environments, when people are empowered, trusted and able to leverage their wisdom and knowledge, great things will emerge. This occurs when employees are coached and not told what to do, when they are free from having to follow specific direction; then they can leverage their knowledge and curiosity to solve the problems. People are driven by the autonomy, mastery and purpose of their work. A coach can help individuals tap into their own wisdom and knowledge. That’s going to rapidly increase their feelings of autonomy, mastery and the increased ownership that fuels purpose.
How do organizations evolve to this type of learning and coaching culture? There are a few important steps to start the process.
- Create agreement at the executive level as to the value of this type of organizational change.
- Institute formal coaching for key leaders and managers so they start to truly understand the value of coaches.
- Create internal coaches within the organization to provide ongoing coaching as needed.
- Cultivate leaders who understand the value of change, self motivation, empowerment, powerful questions, and trust. Culture It must start at the top with executive leadership in order to flow through the organization.
- Build motivational goals to encourage managers to become coaches.
- Lead by example down the hierarchy.
Are all great leaders coaches? No. Should all great leaders be coaches? Yes.
Companies that are committed to learning, growing and innovating need to have leaders who are committed to leaders as coach. Telling and giving directions is sufficient for basic execution. The great organizations will employ leaders who empower by asking great questions that facilitate growth.