Is it just me or does it seem that everywhere we turn more and more people are using coaching? Granted, in my business, I’m going to see this more than most, but I find coaching applications are cropping up everywhere. Companies are starting to put groups of hundreds of their management staff through coach training and coaching is the number one thing that up-and-comers in organizations are asking for. The combination of demand from employees and demand for higher ROIs and better managerial effectiveness from companies is pumping helium into the coaching balloon.
5 Reasons Why Companies Love It
Studies on coaching (e.g. by Manchester Consulting Group and MatrixGlobal) find that the return on general workplace coaching investment is about 6- to 7-fold. Need we say more? Further, coaching is starting to be used to get improve effectiveness of Leadership Development programs. Coaching significantly improves the stickiness of leadership program investments.
2. Better Relationships
Following coaching, there is a demonstrable improvement to relationships. 77% to be exact. Much of what is discussed during coaching is how to manage conversations with others. Being planful, thoughtful, and choosing a deliberate approach will of course grace us with better outcomes.
3. Improved Teamwork
How does a 67% improvement in teamwork catch your attention? It’s hard to get anything of scale done without teamwork.
4. Increased Job Satisfaction
The adoption of a coaching approach where lots of questions are asked and answered and fewer assumptions are made means that generally things are going to hum along, and overall employee engagement will go up. Workplaces with coaching present in various forms experience a 61% increase in job satisfaction.
5. Millennials Value It
All the non-Millennials in senior management are in perpetual search of ways to keep this up and coming group engaged. Coaching has it, for all the reasons cited below, particularly the first 4 reasons below. Yes, Millennials are that more sophisticated generation that aren’t just going to slave away because that’s what they do: they make conscious choices.
5 Reasons Why Individuals Love It
Every coaching session begins and ends with choice. What is the issue to discuss today? Why is this important to you? What are your options? What will you do? It’s all about me from the time I walk in. Our brains crave this.
2. Feeling Respected and Worthy of Investment and Esteem
When a company invests in formal coaching for an individual, it makes the employee’s heart sing. They are special, they are chosen, they are loved, they are worthy of investment. Self-explanatory.
3. Ability to Interact Authentically and Without Social Filters
Corporate meetings, whether we like it or not, are often a form of auditioning in front of peers and superiors. This gets worse the more senior people are in the room: the individual may actually get butterflies as they go in to present their work, they may rehearse the night before. Even if it’s just a discussion, neuropsychology says we’re on the constant look out for threats in what others are saying, we’re aligning with others or dismissing them from our ‘in-group’. With coaching, the person gets to talk through their ideas without fear of judgment.
4. Growing Understanding of the Benefits of Conscious Choice
The level of sophistication and self-awareness of career-minded people has improved tremendously in the 20 years that I have been working. More and more people are understanding that making conscious choices for our lives leads to more satisfaction and higher levels of happiness and coaching forces us to consider our options and make choose a course of action.
5. The Latest Accountability Tool
Coaching sessions typically close off with the answer to, “And how will you hold yourself accountable for this course of action?” Just thinking about this and choosing an answer increases the likelihood that we will follow through. “I’ll put this in my calendar.” “I’ll tell my spouse I’m doing this.” “I commit to sending you an email when I’ve done it.”
Bill Gates has been quoted as saying, “Everyone needs a coach. We all need people to give us feedback. That’s how we improve.” Of course in the case of true coaching, perhaps Gates might have said, “We all need someone to hold a mirror up for us; we all need a sounding board.”
Sherry Pedersen-Ajmani is an Executive Coach and Organizational Development consultant in Toronto and Principal at www.Talentcraft.ca. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @SP_talentcraft.