Building Your Coaching Culture

September 23, 2016

“Command and Control or Connect and Collaborate? ” 

Command and control approaches are not always effective in today’s multi-generational and intercultural work environments. Connect and collaborate environments are the alternative.  But how does one create this new space?

Just as sports coaches help athletes to enhance their game, executive coaches can help staff and leaders reach professional and organizational goals.  Coaching is a method by which the coach deeply engages to enlighten and empower the client.  Knowing that a coach approach is based on the same foundations as sports coaching can enable an individual within an organization to actively coach those around them, thus helping the individual to perform a critical leadership role and to support growth across the organization.  Organizations that foster coaching cultures are more adept at enhancing productivity and ultimately, the overall satisfaction of those within and associated with the organization.

So, what is a coaching culture? According to Darryl Cross, PhD, a leadership coach & psychologist from the Institute for Leadership Coaching, an organization that fosters a coaching culture embraces the belief that everyone has “the opportunity to grow their skills, and hence their value, and reach their professional goals as a way of improving themselves as well as the business.”

A coaching culture exists when all individuals in the organization behave in a way that builds trust, encourages people to communicate openly, and develops ways to create enhanced individual, team, and organizational performance and shared value.

The purpose of using a coach approach in business and academia, or creating and embracing a coaching culture is simple, yet the results are profound.  Executive coaching is a method of engagement that focuses on listening, appreciative inquiry, and curiosity without judgement.  The fundamental belief is that the person or group being coached is fully capable of accomplishing their goals, and when seen, heard, and understood, will not only rise to a challenge, but will exceed expectations.  The approach is forward-looking and not punitive.  Relationships are based on trust and openness.  The coach fully supports the outcomes of the learner and acts a thinking partner to promote success.

Coaching skills can be learned and become integrated into your organization.  We work hard to learn our technical or professional skills, but at the end of the day, no one really teaches us how to work with others, using not our IQ (intelligence quotient), but our EQ (emotional intelligence) to achieve great results.