The Coaching Connection: A Manager's Guide to Developing Individual Potential in the Context of the Organization

Overview

If coaching is indeed the essence of everything positive about learning and development, then knowing where and when to apply it is essential to maximizing its positive impact. The Coaching Connection puts it all into context: the coach, the individual being coached, and the sponsoring organization. This essential guidebook is for you if you’re seeking to improve your people…and your bottom line results.

Does your company need a cohesive, systematic, and strategic approach to ...

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Coaching Connection: A Manager's Guide to Developing Individual Potential in the Context of the Organization

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Overview

If coaching is indeed the essence of everything positive about learning and development, then knowing where and when to apply it is essential to maximizing its positive impact. The Coaching Connection puts it all into context: the coach, the individual being coached, and the sponsoring organization. This essential guidebook is for you if you’re seeking to improve your people…and your bottom line results.

Does your company need a cohesive, systematic, and strategic approach to coaching? Here are the most popular reasons for coaching:

• Onboard a new staff member

• Addressing specific performance and productivity issues

• Sharpening the skills of high-potential candidates considered for promotion

• Transitioning employees to new domestic or international assignments

• Aiding people in dealing with stress and anxiety on the job

• Assisting executives in assuming their roles in the big-picture strategy

• Helping individuals improve their attitude

If any of these resonate within your organization, you’ll find methods, solutions, and approaches to deal with them in The Coaching Connection.

Advance Praise for The Coaching Connection

“Growing great leaders is tough. The Coaching Connection just made it much easier by providing specific and practical guidance that will improve the outcome of any coaching engagement for the individual and the organization.” — Marc Effron, Vice President, Talent Management, Avon Products; author of One Page Talent Management: How to Build Better Leaders, Faster

“Coaching is an essential tool for management, particularly in these economic times. The Coaching Connection provides a thoughtful and brilliantly written guidebook for any manager looking to enhance personal and organizational effectiveness.” — Leni Wildflower, Ph.D., Director, Evidence Based Coaching, Fielding Graduate University

The Coaching Connection makes the timeless point that everybody needs to win from coaching—customers, colleagues, and the organization that employs them.” — Danny Cox, author of Leadership When the Heat's On; and member of the Speaker Hall of Fame

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“…the book is a good first step in leadership coaching.” -- Inland Empire Business Journal

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814414149
  • Publisher: AMACOM
  • Publication date: 8/19/2009
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,051,090
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul J. Gorrell, Ph.D. (New York, NY) is the Managing Director of the Human Capital Consulting practice at Partners in Human Resources International (WeMakeTalentWork.com).

John Hoover, Ph.D. (New York, NY) is a former executive with The Walt Disney Company and McGraw-Hill. He also works for Partners International, and is on the AMA faculty.

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Read an Excerpt

INTRODUCTION

The Tale of Two Clients, or The Coaching Conundrum

“Engaging in an executive coach for your high performing talent tells them that they are valued and that you are investing in their future. A coach builds awareness around successes and failures and provides a supportive partner who reflects the commitment to your executive’s personal and professional long-term success.”

---Judy Jackson

Senior Vice President

Head of Human Resources

Digitas

Executive coaching has often in the past been used to remediate damaging behaviors demonstrated by those with enough institutional authority to do significant damage to people and to the organization that employs them. When powerful executives behave badly by making ill-advised financial or organizational gambles, their organizations suffer. When an organization suffers, the suffering trickles down to a variety of constituency groups. Profits can be lost, benefits can be lost, jobs can be lost, and whatever good things customers and the community at large derive from the organization’s goods and services are diminished or disappear altogether. Anything, such as coaching, that helps managers and executives make good decisions is worth the investment, whether that means turning around a manager’s or executive’s thinking and/or involving them in more productive habits, skills, and activities.

The emerging trend that is eclipsing the mostly remedial approach to coaching is to identify high-potential leaders inside organizations and engage them with skilled coaches early on. The emergent practice is to use the guidance of a business coach to make high-potential individuals more effective businesspeople the same way a sports coach improves the performance of a gifted athlete: transforming natural talent and ability into highly refined skills and capabilities. While coaches in business and sports spend time reprogramming bad habits, addressing skills gaps, and establishing the most productive and efficient activities to enhance the businessperson’s or athlete’s ultimate goals and objectives, coaches prefer to (and should) enter the equation sooner rather than later.

The Coaching Connection is, in part, about connecting the dots between the need for highly skilled, knowledgeable, and wise coaches and the exponentially increased benefits of preemptive managerial and executive skill and competency building as opposed to reactive, after-the-fact interventions. If we have learned anything from the history of coaching, it is that effective leadership does not come naturally to the vast majority of people who are promoted into leadership positions and are paid to lead.  We have also learned that leading is not easy for anyone facing high-pressure demands from employee, customer, and the board, internal and external economic challenges, and complex marketplace competition.

The Conundrum

Who, then, is the coaching client? Is it the individual or small team receiving the coaching or the organization that is paying for it? Reread the opening paragraphs of this introduction and note how many times the individual manager’s or executive’s fortunes are tied directly to the fortunes of the organization and vice versa. Throughout this book you will hear us discuss this symbiotic relationship, this interdependence, if you will, between the organization

and the members of its organizational population. That makes our final answer: The individual and the organization that employs the individual are co-clients.  We are not talking about someone who has been referred to professional therapy

by the human resources department to be treated for depression or to receive marriage and family therapy, although even those referrals have a potential benefit to the organization by helping to develop a happier and healthier employee. We are talking about the growth and development of individuals specifically in how they do their jobs and interact professionally with others now and in the future, both of which are directly and inexorably linked to the health and well-being of the organization that employs them.

Conundrum solved. The tale of two clients unfolds. In marriage counseling, neither partner is the client. The relationship between them is the client. So it is with business coaching. The highest value a coach or a manager who coaches can bring to the individual or to a small team is to find the place where the best interests of both converge.

The diagram of the contextual coaching process illustrates how the individual and the organization are considered separate at first but begin to merge as the coaching process progresses. Ultimately, if the coaching is successful, the individual’s and the organization’s interests become one---or as blended as humanly possible. A well-coached employee who has experienced such convergence will be able to articulate how his or her function adds value to the organization.

Look no farther than a commonly held definition of organizational culture to discover why the organization functions the way it does. Organizational culture is the driving, guiding---often unspoken---force that defines how an organization conducts business, treats its internal and external customers, and positions itself in the marketplace. Organizational culture is also defined as the shared beliefs, values, and behaviors that inform the real organizational environment and the real organizational conduct behind the rhetoric.

If espoused organizational goals and objectives are consistently aligned with organizational culture, an organization has a reasonable chance of achieving those goals and objectives. If organizational goals and objectives are at cross purposes with the shared beliefs, values, and behaviors that constitute organizational culture, the best efforts to act in spite of the culture or in ways contrary to the true culture are likely to produce entropy as the  organization grinds to a halt (productivity-wise) in its own inertia. The AMA/Institute for Corporate Productivity Corporate Culture Survey 2008, commissioned and published by the American Management Association, concluded, among other things, that organizations with cultures that considered the individual needs of their employees tended to prosper more than those that did not. The bottom line is this: You cannot coach a culture. But you can coach the individuals who create and sustain a culture. As a result, both individual and organization can, and should, win. Such is the basis of the Contextual Coaching process model.

Excerpted from THE COACHING CONNECTION:  A MANAGER’S GUIDE TO DEVELOPING INDIVIDUAL POTENTIAL IN THE CONTEXT OF THE ORGANIZATION by Paul J. Gorrell and John Hoover. Copyright © 2009 Paul J. Gorrell and John Hoover. Published by AMACOM Books, a division of American Management Association, New York, NY. Used with permission. All rights reserved. http://www.amacombooks.org.

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Table of Contents

Contents

Introduction

C H A P T E R 1 .

A Coaching Culture

C H A P T E R 2 .

The Basics of Contextual Coaching

C H A P T E R 3 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Strategy

C H A P T E R 4 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Structure

C H A P T E R 5 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Culture

C H A P T E R 6 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Communication

C H A P T E R 7 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Talent Systems

C H A P T E R 8 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Talent Solutions

C H A P T E R 9 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Development

C H A P T E R 1 0 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Team Dynamics

C H A P T E R 1 1 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Career

C H A P T E R 1 2 .

Area of Behavioral Focus: Competence

Epilogue

Index

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