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How to Develop an Effective Coaching Strategy for Your Organization

Companies with professional development plans witness greater ongoing success across their employee base.

The global phenomenon that has been coined The Great Resignation, where record numbers of employees left their jobs during the pandemic, has caused major ripples across a wide range of industries. Amid an economic bounce back that is increasing the demand for labor and new skills, nearly half of workers are walking away, changing their career plans.[1]

Businesses that are committed to overcoming these challenges understand that workers are looking beyond pay raises to find organizations that make them feel valued. Many who left jobs during The Great Resignation have expressed that they weren’t listened to by the companies for which they worked. Millions of workers had reached a breaking point due to increased workloads and workplace-related pressures.[2] One of the root causes of workplace dissatisfaction is lack of training opportunities. Unfortunately, nearly 40% of workers report not having been offered any form of coaching by their employer, with 67% saying they do not have a written plan in place to map their professional development.[3]

For companies looking to improve employee recruitment and retention, the evidence is clear that coaching makes an impact. Here are some key steps to consider when developing a coaching strategy for your organization’s team members.

Provide tools to make coaching accessible

Employees who don’t know where to turn for career help will ultimately grow frustrated, so it’s important that human resources leaders offer coaching that is easy to access and use within the organization. From orientation through ongoing career conversations and performance reviews, workers should be equipped with everything from online learning libraries to virtual coaching platforms that enable them to build the skills they need to succeed.

While executive coaching continues to be a vital way to drive development for leaders, more companies are realizing that training needs to extend beyond the C-suite to all levels to create a culture of high performance and employee well-being. Studies show that coaching not only drives engagement, but also motivates and boosts team morale. Organizations that are classified as high performing have a much stronger coaching culture when compared with other organizations.[4]

Role model a ‘permission to learn’ culture

It’s one thing to make coaching accessible, but if it not valued by management, employees would not make it a priority for themselves. Senior team leaders need to demonstrate in a transparent way that they are dedicating time to their own development, therefore empowering employees to understand that training is not only acceptable, but also crucial to the growth of the organization. Dave Goldberg, the late former CEO of SurveyMonkey, advanced this idea by creating a ‘culture of curiosity’ in which he was at the forefront of continuous learning for himself and his team. He launched initiatives such as the Goldie Speaker Series in which he invited experts from different industries and backgrounds so everyone could learn on the same level.[5]

Build in time for development

One of the most prominent barriers to establishing a consistent coaching strategy for employees is a lack of time. When asked about the biggest challenge they face at work, many employees say it is an overwhelming workload. Most employees are spending less than three hours a month on professional development.[6]

Human resource and organizational leaders should clearly communicate with employees at the outset of their engagement that they are committed to providing employees with the time needed to build skills and increase their value to the company.

Google’s famous ‘20% Rule,’ which was kicked off by the company’s co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 2004, says that team members are encouraged to spend 20% of their work hours learning new skills and exploring other ideas and coaching opportunities.[7] This is a great example of how leaders can commit to building training into employee schedules.[8] More than 98% of leaders that have participated in Right Management Coaching have gained new knowledge and skills to empower employees and provide them with beneficial development tools.[9] If your company is seeking a solution to get you started, it’s easy to book a 30-minute or 60-minute on-demand RightCoach session.

Establish a personalized action plan

A key step to engaging employees in their development involves creating a personalized action plan – and helping individuals follow through with it. This task should be a collaborative effort between team members and managers, establishing concrete goals and ensuring that all assignments, timelines, and desired results are mutually agreed upon. Coaching is frequently used to assist team members as they prepare for new assignments, overcome obstacles, or improve skills and work habits. A personalized action plan may include the following:

  • Perform self-evaluations (i.e., identify newly gained skills, assess key areas for improvement, add and refine goals, etc.).
  • Perform peer-to-peer evaluations.
  • Offer informational webinars and/or conferences on topics relevant employee roles and interests.
  • Encourage employees to attend monthly networking events to build professional contacts.

Coordinate regular check-ins and evaluations

Ongoing touchpoints are key to making sure goals are being met and continuously evolving. Managers should meet one-on-one with team members on a regular basis, whether biweekly, monthly, or quarterly to create practical, timely benchmarks and devise a thorough plan for what can be discussed during each meeting.

Coaching programs require consistency, dedication, and energy, but time and time again, they result in more confident workers, better outputs, and employee longevity around the globe. According to the International Coaching Federation, businesses that implement coaching activities can witness 4-8 times the return on investment.[10] When coaching becomes integrated into a company’s culture and considered as continuous initiative, individual employees, teams, and the entire organization will benefit.

Learn more about how your organization can strengthen its coaching strategy through RightCoach.