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Lacey’s Coaching Tips for Leaders — 1) Getting Started

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Note from Don: Dwight Lacey is a Principal at Engagient, with many years as a CEO.  He will be providing guest blogs periodically on how senior executives and managers at all levels can become better coaches — and make a critical impact on employee engagement.

Over the last several years we have been conducting High Performance Cultural Assessments in many organizations.  In almost every survey we find three causal factors that are ranked the lowest in the survey:

  1. Performance reviews are not conducted regularly and upon further discussion with employees they rarely get a review and when the review is done they feel like they are being reviewed only at year end.  They go further to tell us that they are getting “rated or evaluated” on elements that weren’t even discussed throughout the year.  When we talk to management about performance reviews they almost always talk to us about how they are a nuisance and any attempt to complete them is to comply with HR requirements.  Few, if any see them as a powerful tool to get exceptional performance out of their employees.
  2. Regular recognition for having done a good job is rare and most employees comment that the only thing they recall throughout a year is the times that the “boss” came in to their office OR more likely called them in to his/her office to be admonished for something that has gone wrong!
  3. Employees rarely say that they are consulted on decisions that have a personal impact on their job or the work processes in their team.

So, before we start a discussion about what a leader who coaches well looks like and how they conduct themselves throughout the year, let’s talk about what the guiding principles of coaching are.  Thanks to our colleagues at Leadscape Learning and the Navigational Coaching Workshop that we use with clients, we can tell you that the key principles of coaching are:

  1. Coaching depends on a trusting, collaborative relationship between the coach (leader) and the coachee (employee).
  2. Coaching focuses on the coachee’s agenda.
  3. Coaching is based on a peer to peer form of interaction.
  4. Coaching works best when people find their own answers.
  5. Coaching supports the coachee to do the work.
  6. Coaching leads to action.

Check out more by selecting the Coaching Tips for Leaders category for additional guidance.

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After several years of administering an employee satisfaction survey, our company decided to partner with Engagient to measure employee engagement, which are two very different dynamics. Engagient’s processes are clear, direct, thorough and highly effective in gaining insight into how engaged our employees were, at every level.

The high degree of professionalism exhibited by Engagient’s consultants and their depth of knowledge and understanding of employee engagement is unsurpassed. As a result of our employee engagement survey, we have begun taking measures to re-engage our employees at every level of the organization.

--Claudia H. Snyder, Director of Human Resources
Thomco Insurance
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