Coaching employees is a key element of management, and can help you develop a better relationship with your workers, thus resulting in higher productivity and greater morale. Beyond simply managing, coaching your employees can help them better fulfill their potential, develop their skills, and better utilize the ones they have.
The managerial skill of coaching involves helping employees overcome limitations. It means focusing not on the specific tasks, but rather on the actual person. There are several recommended components to doing this properly:
- Provide advice and direction–on career path, on dealing with organizational politics, on completing the tasks at hand.
- Let your employee speak. Ask questions that will allow him to “find his own answers,” so to speak.
- Schedule coaching sessions with each employee. This will help you find out his goals and personal challenges.
- Explain to your employees how coaching works, and get their feedback on the areas they would like to be coached in.
- Determine the outcomes your employees are looking for, and the perceived difficulties in achieving them.
- Ask your employees for a game plan to help keep everyone on the same path of overcoming obstacles and reaching goals.
Certainly, not all coaching needs to be this formal. Always being open to feedback from your employees is what counts, and can be the deciding factor in running a smooth operation for any independent retailer.