Coaching Tip – How Strong Leaders Avoid Performance Dips

Coaching Tip – How Strong Leaders Avoid Performance Dips


When leaders work with their teams, leaders often default to using only one method of coaching. Short version, leaders get into a coaching rut. And as a consequence, leaders’ teams get caught in a performance dip.

It’s the equivalent of a driving to work the same way every day. If something happens along the way that is out of the norm (an accident or the likes), the driver will find himself stuck in traffic because he wasn’t adaptive in his choice of routes.

The same goes for leaders. If a leader uses only one coaching method, the leader and his team can get stuck in their performance because the leader can’t find the most effective approach to help the team do better.

With this in mind, leaders can help their teams do better when leaders are adaptive in their use of three coaching methods to help their teams do better.

These three methods for improvement will have the leaders’ teams thinking better, doing better and getting better results.

The three methods for improvement are:

Preparation – With this method, leaders work with their teams to develop a process, set of questions or a way of responding to a challenge the team has been experiencing.

For example, leaders might spend time with a team member preparing a more effective way to reply to concerns expressed by the group they serve.

Practice – Typically this approach would involve leaders role-playing with a team member to practice a new approach.

Using the example above, it might mean that the leader and team member role-play the various ways to respond to the concerns. The leader would play the role of the stakeholder and the team member would play the role of himself. Together the leader and the team members would then tweak the team member’s written ideas so they would work better in the team member’s conversations with stakeholders going forward.

Acceleration – This method involves the leader coaching a team member to improve what he is currently doing during the team member’s interactions with the identified group.

Following the example above, it would include the leader reviewing a recent stakeholder conversation with a team member. This would involve the leader reviewing with the team member how he responded to a specific stakeholder’s concern and then the leader coaching the team member to find even more effective way to respond to the concern.

The leader’s coaching could also include helping the team member notice the stakeholder’s signs of a concern earlier in the conversation and to address any concerns before a stakeholder get a chance to verbalize one.

Leaders have more than one way to approach their coaching conversations depending on what their team members are experiencing. Which of the coaching methods can you use to avoid getting stuck in a coaching rut?

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