Utilizing a coaching program as a part of organizational practice for employee development requires a systematic and structured approach. Coaching is not just something that may or may not be conducted in a causal method; coaching is not a temporary activity. Once a company decides to embrace a coaching program as part of the system, it must be structured and must be a regular activity. It has to be a fixed implementation to function as a tool for enhancing employee performance and growth.
Being a crucial program for employee development, the coaching process must be outlined and coaching best practice should be laid out as well. Coaching best practices usually refer to performance standards that are expected to be performed by the coach. These are considered the most effective procedures to follow when coaches conduct sessions in the workplace. This article will elaborate further about the best practices to be implemented in coaching.
Basic Understanding of Coaching Best Practice
The basic foundation of best practices is the first-hand experiences of professionals and industry experts. In the field of coaching, opposed to theoretical practice, the years of experience and acquired knowledge, as well as the skills of the coaching professionals form the coaching best practices of an organization. Although information based on books and theories is very useful, first-hand knowledge and experience is much more effective when applied in context.
Coaching best practice consists of coaching protocols, guidelines, principles, standards, and procedures that greatly contribute to the success of the coaching program. Apart from incorporating it in the coaching program, it can also be used in developing a new coaching style or strategy. Research and evaluation shows that applying best practice in coaching is highly effective.
The Cycle of Coaching Best Practice
Best practices are not permanent. Over time, these are modified and suited to whatever works best for the coach and the trainee. The cycle of best practice revolves around the following steps:
1. Reviewing of the individuals for coaching
2. Educating the trainee on the coaching best practices
3. Determining the most relevant and useful best practice
4. Identifying areas that need to be improved
5. Finding measures to evaluate performance level
6. Benchmarking lapses in performance
7. Choosing a coaching style, technique and process that will minimize the gaps
8. Implementing and applying the best approaches
9. Evaluating and reviewing the chosen strategy or approach
One important aspect that should not be missed out is to test and assess the selected best practice before it is rolled out during coaching sessions. Conducting the risk assessment will determine if the coaching best practice will be effective and feasible to the program.
Ideal Coaching Best Practice
There is no general or universal best practice for all companies and organizations. Every company has its own set of best practices in their coaching programs. Listed below are few among best coaching practice:
1. Coaching Preparation
The coach makes the necessary preparations for the coaching sessions by identifying the purpose of the coaching in concordance with the needs of the employee.
2. Build a Positive and Trusting Coaching Relationship
The coach initiates a warm and comfortable connection with the trainee.
3. Setting of Expectations
The coach establishes clear coaching goals with the trainee and identifies roles and responsibilities.
4. Coaching Plan and Practice
The coach coordinates with the supervisor, plan suitable coaching schedules and discusses tools and resources for coaching.
5. Observe Practice
The coach makes an initial assessment of the trainee’s performance before the start of the coaching sessions.
6. Develop Coaching Strategy and Technique
The coach creates a coaching style and technique based on the results of the initial assessment.
7. Conduct Coaching Session
The actual coaching session with the trainee is done. Any coaching drills and activities will be delivered during the sessions.
8. Evaluate Progress of Performance
The coach conducts a final assessment of the trainee’s performance after the coaching sessions.
9. Documentation Process
The coach documents any changes in the performance trend of the individual and recognizes any signs of improvement. Also, the coach submits performance feedback to the trainee’s immediate supervisor as well as to the trainee.