Thursday, 26 June 2014
Coaching in not managing. It's not appraising. It's not dictating; preaching; or commanding. Coaching is about nurturing someone. Helping them be the best they can be, while allowing them to shape themselves rather than moulding them in your own image.
Why am I talking about coaching today? Well, fresh out of a "Leader as a Coach" course at work, it's today's hot topic.
I learnt a few models designed to help with coaching efforts such as DESC and GROW. And yes, they will help. But it was something else that become resoundingly obvious as I sat back, in the way that I tend to do, and listened to the conversation around me.
Coaching is common sense. Common courtesy. Simple human interaction that has become a lost art in recent times.
If you break it down, coaching is about two people with an invested interest looking to get the best possible outcome. It's a career development tool. It's a team development tool. It can be employed as a behaviour correction tool. But essentially it consists of one person using their years of experience to help another better themselves.
But human interaction doesn't come naturally anymore. It's something people are scared of. It's a skill that needs to be developed. I find this a little surprising.
I'm not talking about presentation skills here. I'm not talking about influencing or creative collaboration. Those things can be tough. I'm talking about two people sitting down to talk something that is of mutual interest in order to improve a situation. Seems simple. But we NEED these models to help us structure something that I think should be natural.
It's my natural inclination to help. To nurture. To train. To give a man a fishing rod and show him how to fish.
I thought that was the norm.