On Thursday, June 7, we hosted another one of Advanced Resources’ exclusive Thought Leadership Events focused on coaching and development. This session was moderated by Brian Brooke, Advanced Resources Managing Director, and Brian kicked off the event by highlighting a staggering statistic that only 5% of organizations train their managers on coaching behaviors.
"You may have heard people say, 'what if I develop people and they leave?' Well, what if I don't and they stay?"
-Sean Taylor, Director of HR at Ulta Beauty
Taylor emphasized why coaching and development are crucial for organizations. He was joined on stage by Alec Marketos, Vice President of HR at Dover Corporation’s Vehicle Services Group, and Marisa Meadows, Director of HR at Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurants.
Here are some of the key takeaways from our event:
Coaching & Development are Closely Linked to Each Other
All three panelists see a tight link between coaching and development. Development is the plan or roadmap to achieve a career goal, while coaching is the action to get there. As Marketos puts it, coaching is a way to help someone get better. Whether it’s their career path, career goals, or skills improvement, this process of helping others improve directly links to career planning or the development process. When organizations promote managers who are weak in coaching, it does more harm than good, thanks to the significant impact coaching has on developing others.
Coaching & Development Tie to ROI
Meadows has observed reduced turnover and hiring costs as a result of stronger coaching and development efforts.
"People are leaving their leaders - not their companies - because they're not getting what they want or need. You need to make sure they're set up for success."
-Marisa Meadows, Director of HR at Cooper's Hawk Winery and Restaurants
She also warned to be aware not only of turnover but of churnover. Teams become connected to their leaders and they develop relationships that foster stability and trust. When a leader leaves, it can create a domino effect resulting in instability within the organization.
In addition to turnover, coaching can directly link to your goals for the year. Do you want to accomplish your goals? Hit your numbers? Execute on your plan? Coaching can assist with making sure the organization is aligned and focused. Managers need to have the ability to communicate expectations to meet their team goals.
Coaching Requires Human Interaction
Between career conversations and individual development programs, many HR professionals are faced with data in multiple formats and systems that don’t speak to each other. Our TLE panel experts admitted that even they struggle to find one intuitive, cost effective technology solution to integrate all of their data.
With mountains of information, how to you begin to consolidate? While the hunt is on for a solution, Marketos stresses that coaching is "one of the last vestiges on earth that requires human interaction.” You can read, study, and research online, but training the development of coaching skills needs to be practiced face-to-face through role playing. Marketos advises handling the training in-house or hiring a consultant to train your team.
A Few Final Thoughts
Meadows doesn't think people are bad coaches, they just don't have the tools. You can teach skill, but the biggest challenge is the will – the want or desire to coach or develop themselves and understand the whys for others. You can influence the level of “will” by connecting the dots to why something is important.
When having coaching conversations with employees who speak a different language, Taylor advises to keep the conversation very open, asking the employee what they need to be successful. Gain an understanding of their cultural norms and their experiences with previous companies.
There are going to be pitfalls. Stay with it! Find a way to form a connection with the employees you’re rolling programs out to and determine how to situationally approach the problem to get their ear. You can also try to find an executive sponsor to help carry the message.
Looking for an affordable training tool for new leaders? Meadows says nothing is better than a good old fashioned book. She recommends John C. Maxwell’s The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership: Follow Them and People Will Follow You.
Thank you to our panelists and attendees for making our most recent Thought Leadership Event another success. We hope to see you at future events!