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  • Writer's pictureFelicity Baker

Coaching Skills for Managers

With rapid, disruptive change now a common feature of modern organisations, companies are recognising that to survive in this environment, the talents of employees at all levels must be nurtured and harnessed. Gone are the days when managers are expected to have all the answers. Equally, leadership of the command-and-control variety has ceased to serve today’s workplaces. Instead, leaders and managers are required to engage teams and to actively support employees to grow and perform. In this blog we discuss the benefits of providing training in coaching skills for managers to respond to these new expectations.

Closing the skills gap

In the 2022 HR Industry Benchmark Report published by software company ELMO, a lack of leadership training was found to be one of the top barriers to effective performance management. The study noted that those in senior positions have often been “promoted into people management roles due to technical excellence but are not given the tools or support required to fulfil such a role. The nuances of people management …. are often overlooked as areas that require skill development.”

To boost these skills, many are advocating a coaching approach to leadership. Here, managers are taught to facilitate problem solving and encourage employees’ development by asking questions and offering support and guidance, rather than giving orders and making judgments.

With a Gallup study finding that only two in 10 managers instinctively know how to coach employees, organisations are now looking to coaching experts to skill up their managers.

What are the benefits of coaching skills for managers?

Coaching in the workplace provides a range of benefits for employees and organisations. What’s more, according to Deloitte, coaching employees in the workplace is crucial for equipping your organisation to adapt to the changing nature of work.

Managers trained in coaching skills can provide your employees with the support they need to perform at their best. They will grow more productive, efficient, autonomous teams, and create the culture and environment to allow everyone to flourish.

Increased motivation and commitment

When executed effectively, coaching leads to greater intrinsic motivation amongst employees. Enhanced motivation and interest in work is associated with improved curiosity and innovation, inspiring the self-directed to test out ideas and make new discoveries. According to McKinsey, when employees find greater intrinsic motivation, they are 32% more committed and 46% more satisfied with their jobs.

Improved employee engagement

With younger generations moving into the workforce, expectations of leaders and organisations are changing. For example, the Center for Generational Kinetics found that 60% of Gen Z employees want frequent check-ins with their managers through the week, with 40% wanting daily interactions. Employees who receive coaching from their leaders are 5.6% more engaged than those peers who forgo coaching. Research by Fuel50 and Quantum Workplace found that 85% of highly disengaged employees receive insufficient coaching from their line manager.

Increased reflection and autonomy

Leaders who use a coaching style create opportunity for enhanced self-reflection. They provide a psychologically safe space for employees to explore their strengths and learning needs, to build confidence and take on challenges that further their development. In turn, this facilitates employees to become more autonomous and to take ownership of their work and development.

Boosted bottom line

Organisations whose leaders have developed coaching skills are 130% more likely to achieve stronger business outcomes. They are also 39% more likely to see improved employee results in relation to engagement, productivity and customer service.

Reduced turnover

According to Gartner, employees who view their leaders as effective coaches are 20% more likely to remain at their organisations. They are also 40% more engaged and display 38% more discretionary effort than those who do not feel the same. This highlights how coaching can be an important motivating factor for employees staying with their leader and company.

Facilitating growth and resilience

A leader who has great interpersonal skills provides psychological safety. They understand that coaching staff to grow and develop is central to achieving the goals of the organisation. We can all remember a leader in our career journey who has supported us to be the best we can be, has accepted our mistakes and allowed us space to develop the skills to grow through challenges. They have a lasting impact on us as individuals, boosting our personal and professional resilience and wellbeing.

How would you rate your managers on these qualities?
Do your leaders need support to develop their coaching skills, to know when and how to apply them for maximum effect?
Schedule a free consultation to discuss what your leaders need and how our new Coaching Skills for Managers training programme can help.

With many years’ experience facilitating client and employee growth, we’ve got all the expertise you need to get your leaders and managers up to speed.


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