Do you do whatever you are told? If you are told to do something does that make you want to do it and give it your best? How does it make you feel when someone encourages you to succeed at something and walks you through the process until you can do it well on your own, then they empower you to learn and improve? Of course, it makes you feel good about yourself, about your job, and about your boss or coach.
A boss that tells you everything you do wrong and ridicules your mistakes does not help your performance. You are discouraged and
only do the minimum to complete the task so you can keep your job. You are not empowered to go that extra mile to achieve more or improve your performance. I once told a boss of mine that we need more coaching by supervisors. She said to me "you really think we need coaching". I took time to coach her so she might realize what it meant to be coached. She decided she wanted to be coached for her personal activities. Her activity was walking and so she started a walking regimen that made her feel better and gave her more energy.
How Coaching Helps
Coaching can be used for anything. You've probably heard of life coaches. Any kind of coaching, if done right and the person is ready to be coached, can be advantageous. Coaching can engage your workforce and get them to actually enjoy their job more and want to come to work everyday. They might start to look forward to what they will accomplish each day. Engagement is all about the empowerment you give your employees to make them feel good about what they are doing for the job, the organization, the team and even for the boss. They are coached to understand how their accomplishments help the team and how it all fits into the success of the organization.
Coaching means treating people with respect, being empathetic to their needs in and outside the office, and asking what you can do to help, then coaching them through it the best you can. When you have that kind of compassion for the person you gain a respect and trust that will go along way when you need to accomplish a task through your employees or your team.
Specifics of Coaching
When you are coaching your employees you are probably, subconsciously, trying to get them to accomplish specific things. This is different than executive coaching in very specific ways. Executive coaching is more of an higher awareness achieved personally by the executive through the proper questions asked by a professional executive coach. There is never a preconceived goal or motive. The questions are not leading questions. It is strictly meant to empower the executive to think for themselves openmindedly so they can come to their own realizations of what need to be accomplished and how.
When you are coaching as a supervisor you have the duty to guide the coaching sessions to a specific outcome that helps the individual and the team meet your goals. Sometimes it can be eye opening for the supervisor as they find other ways to accomplish their goals but with the same end in mind.
So don't rely on the old way of just telling your employees what to do and expect them to do it if you want to improve performance of an individual, of a team or of your organization. Until you properly coach their performance with compassion, empathy and empowerment the performance curve can only be up temporarily through fear and intimidation, and that will only lead to higher costs through attrition, lower productivity overall, and morale issues in the workforce.