Coach ’em up!
A friend of mine named Wendy married her husband in part because of his locker room pep talks. He is a football coach and perfected the ability to motivate his team with just a few words. He often used this special skill on their kids. In this article, I’ll go over some thoughts on coaching in the workplace.
The work coach is similar to a football coach. As a leader you want to ensure the team will be successful. You do this by supporting your people. You monitor the performance of each team member and provide them with timely feedback.
The best coaches recognize that it is critical to disclose information at the right time to the right people. The coach understands the hidden costs of withholding. Maintaining control is not worth the potential undermining of production of the team. Train your team, set expectations, and empower them to make the right decisions with all of the information available.
The less experienced workers will require more coaching. You want to do this with a teacher’s heart. Be careful in your communication so that it is received as your genuine desire to help them get better and not just feedback. The yelling tactic that a lot of football coaches use is never acceptable in the work place.
You give rewards and recognition as appropriate. The best way to modify behavior is with positive reinforcement. So, remember to use the carrot approach to incentivize your team to reach further than they even thought possible. I always try to use “please” and “thank you” like my Southern Mom raised me.
Consistent coaching is probably the leader’s most valuable role, but let’s be honest few of us do it. We get caught up in the day to day activities, meetings, and fire fights that result in losing the focus on people. People are the MVP of the team. So, take the time to coach them properly.
What do you think? Your work team IS a team like any other. How do you implement positive coaching in the workplace?