Browse Category: Coaching

When should a leader or manager coach someone?

Coaching is one of the most powerful ways to improve employee performance that you can use as a team leader or manager. Once you know exactly how to coach someone effectively in the workplace you will discover that there are three distinct times that the power of coaching is most evident.

First: When you are faced with one – or more – new, inexperienced or poorly skilled team members. Coaching allows you to quickly and effectively enhance the skill-set of new, inexperienced or unskilled workers in a measured and focussed way.

You can focus on specific skills that are most critical to your day-to-day results in your own time frame, rather than having to wait weeks or months for an essential skill to be introduced in an external course or training program. And you can introduce your specific equipment, procedures or requirements at the same time as you are developing the skills, so no re-training is required.

Second: The special personal attention that coaching implies can be a powerful way to build employee motivation and develop a collaborative team culture. So when you are faced with an ‘attitude problem’ or a de-motivated employee try coaching to increase motivation. It can be far more effective than other ways of approaching this problem situation.

Finally: Use coaching to encourage your good employees or team members to become exceptional. This is one of the most beneficial uses of coaching yet it is often overlooked. Just because one of your people is doing well, don’t assume that they couldn’t do even better. With a little coaching they may become one of your most valued people, with just a little encouragement.

The secret to tapping the full power of coaching, and getting the best results from the coaching you do, lies in knowing how to coach quickly and effectively as well as being able to recognise when coaching will be worthwhile. But as a leader and manager when you know how to coach properly and use coaching in these types of situations you will be amazed at how team results and morale improves.

Leadership and management is already hard enough. You’d have to be crazy to miss using such a powerful, proven – and simple – tool as coaching when you face any of these three situations.


Learn how to easily and effectively coach employees in the workplace

I’m the boss! Why should I bother to coach anyone?

Well, the short answer may be: “With that attitude you may not be the best person to coach anyone…”

The longer answer may require you to honestly answer the question: “How is management going for you?” If every employee reporting to you is delivering exceptionally good and consistent results and you are happy with the way things are, maybe you have everything sorted and you don’t need to bother with coaching…

However, if even some of your employees could do better, or if your best employees always seem to ‘up and go’ just when you’ve ‘broken them in’, maybe you might enjoy better results if you did things a little differently.

Coaching is a proven and effective leadership skill that delivers consistent improvements in employee results for those who know how to do it properly and use it well.

Unlike management tools which revolve around control and authority (which are very important when the circumstances require them), leadership tools like coaching rely on so called ‘soft skills’ to influence, inspire and encourage different attitudes, actions and understanding in the person being coached.

Really effective leaders and managers are able to distinguish between the situations that require a management approach and those where leadership will be more effective.

If unquestioning compliance with authority is required (a safety situation, for example) a management approach is appropriate. However, when we hope to achieve performance levels that are better than the minimum acceptable standard, a leadership approach will use positive motivation to produce exceptional results.

So once you recognise that some situations benefit more from a leadership approach than a management approach you will begin to see where coaching might be useful to improve employee results.

When you know how to do it properly, coaching can achieve three things that will ensure your people generate exceptional results:

1. Coaching can build skill levels in new and poorly skilled workers quickly and effectively.

2. Employees who lack motivation can be encouraged to willingly contribute their best through careful coaching.

3. Already good workers can be motivated, encouraged and skilled to perform even better, potentially becoming exceptional employees, and willingly delivering outstanding results.

Done properly, coaching is one of the most effective leadership tools you can have in your leadership and management toolkit to improve employee performance and boost motivation and morale. It is a skill worth developing.

If you aren’t using coaching effectively you aren’t getting the results you could be getting from everyone on your team. It’s as simple as that.

Learn how to easily and effectively coach employees in the workplace

Does coaching a member of my team need to be done in private?

One of the questions I’m often asked by leaders and managers about coaching a team member to improved performance is whether coaching is something that should always be done in private?

It’s an important question to consider because it leads to a critical distinction you need to make in your mind, and apply in your approach to coaching in the workplace, for it to be most effective.

Namely, that coaching is not the same thing as discipline or formal counselling for unacceptable performance or actions. A good leader creates a context where warnings and discipline are rare, but coaching is common.

When you know how to make coaching all members of your team a regular and normal part of your interaction with them, you will be much less likely to need to escalate things to the level of discipline or a formal warning.

If you are regularly coaching even your best employees it becomes a routine part of your whole team’s commitment to continuous improvement to be coached. If everyone expects to be coached and the coaching is done properly and regularly, coaching does not need to be done in private. It is a normal part of everyone’s day. Your employees will appreciate your coaching and respond well to it. It becomes a part of the team culture.

Of course there will always be some matters that may be better handled confidentially. Just as some other interactions with an individual on your team should be confidential, but as a general rule when you have established a receptive team culture and are coaching properly it isn’t something that you need to do in private.

So, learn how to coach properly and establish a receptive context for your coaching and it will not only be more effective, you can do it easily, openly and quickly and still reap fantastic results.


Learn how to easily and effectively coach employees in the workplace


Who cares about coaching employees in the workplace?

Question: There seems to be such a lot of fuss these days about coaching in the workplace, but who really needs it?

Answer: You do! And so do the people on your team, if you want them to produce exceptional results.


Coaching is probably the most effective way to build employee engagement, skills and motivation. While there are other ways to build skills, such as external or internal training, most of them will require a significant level of resources. The resources required may be an investment in time, money or more frequently both.

Coaching on the other hand, when you know how to do it properly, may take you only a few minutes of your time and requires no additional resources or money invested in it.

Coaching is in fact quick and easy to do — once you know how. Of course, there are some traps you want to avoid. Like any skill, coaching can be improved through experience and effort. But once you decide to begin coaching your people your coaching skills — and the results you see — will improve rapidly.

Coaching is an essential skill that really should be a part of your leadership and management tool kit.

It offers a powerful way to boost the results that even a good team can produce.

Elite sportspeople wouldn’t dream of preparing for competition without a coach. Select a coach that you admire and think about how he or she would coach your people to better results. A good coach challenges and motivates, encourages and supports. Ask yourself how you could do this with you or team.

You will consistently see the best sports people attributed their success to the efforts of their coach. If you want to get the best out of all your people you need to care about coaching. In fact, you need to become their coach.

Learn how to easily and effectively coach employees in the workplace

Improve Employee Performance Through Coaching
Improve Employee Performance Through Coaching

How to get maximum results with minimum effort

Maximum Results with Minimum Effort

I guess that’s everyone’s dream. As a leader or manager your responsibility and role is to deliver set outcomes through the efforts of others – those people on your team. 

Your role is not to do the tasks, but to make sure they get done.

And that all sounds fine … until you are faced with an employee whose performance is not up to scratch.

Now you are confronted with the challenge of bringing their performance up to the required standard. And I’ve never met a leader who doesn’t experience at least a little sinking feeling at the
prospect of working through all the difficult issues that can be associated with changing the attitudes and skills of an employee who needs to do better.

If even one member of your team isn’t performing well, your whole team will suffer.

Not only will your team’s results be effected, other team members who are doing their best will become disheartened by the impact of any inadequate contributions and the whole team culture and morale will suffer.

Poor performance by any team member presents a situation you just can’t afford to ignore. It demands your urgent attention – and you had better get whatever you decide to do right, or the problems can just escalate.

So what should you do?

Faced with a poorly performing employee your options are basically to move them on or help them get better.

As the first option is an option of last resort (and one that is not always available anyway) I will focus on how you can help a poorly performing employee get better. When you do this properly, you in effect gain a whole new team member for minimum effort so this is a very powerful option.

You have three primary options available for helping a poorly performing employee reach your required standard of performance:

1. Coaching
2. Training
3. Performance Management

All are valid, but each is best used in somewhat different circumstances.

* Performance Management (or Disciplinary Counselling)

This should be reserved for repeated instances of poor performance and matters of a very serious nature.

If Performance Management fails to produce satisfactory and sustained improvements in performance, the employee needs to understand they will no longer have a role to play in your team.

When you initiate a formal Performance Management process, you should ensure you have the authority and support required to enforce this, should it be required. A discussion with your supervisor and with your Human Resources department will help protect you, should you need to remove someone if their performance doesn’t improve.

* Training is an often overlooked means of improving performance.

Many people who learn skills and tasks on the job could do things better with even a day or two of formal training.

This is even more so with ‘soft’ skills like leadership, communication and management. So watch out for courses and opportunities to expand the skills of all the people on your team.

Two disadvantages with training are that it is often necessary to wait for an appropriate course to become available and courses can be expensive.

* Coaching, on the other hand, is one of your most valuable  leadership tools.

You can use it every day, with good people who could be even better – AND with poor performers who need to improve their skills or attitude. Done well, it needn’t take very long, and it can show huge returns on the little time you invest.

Coaching doesn’t need any formal approval or additional funding and, by it’s very nature, when it is done well it builds team moral and makes employees feel valued and supported.

Of all your three options for performance improvement, coaching has huge potential to deliver maximum results for you with minimum effort. But it has to be done properly.

Once you have developed your own coaching skills you will have a powerful tool in your leadership toolkit. A tool you can apply not only to improve performance in poorly performing employees, but also to boost the performance of your best employees to exceptional results. All with minimum effort for maximum results – and who wouldn’t want that?

For more great ideas on how to improve employee performance through coaching visit:



“Leadership, many have said, is different from management. Management is mostly about ‘to do’ lists – can’t live without them! Leadership is about tapping the wellsprings of human motivation – and about fundamental relations with one’s fellows.”

Tom Peters (American academic)


How to Improve Employee Performance through Coaching:

Coaching is such a powerful leadership tool for improving employee performance – when it is done well – that I have written a new ‘Just the Gist’ Short Report on exactly how to do it to ensure you get effective results every time.

You will find all the details at:

*** Remember if you are already a member of the Leadership Coaching Club you will get a copy of this, plus a huge range of information, leadership courses, audio programs, ebooks and other resources when you login. (If you aren’t a member yet, you’ll find all the details at: )

On the other hand if what you want to do is discover how to improve employee performance and boost team morale through effective coaching check out our new Short Report at:

Kind regards


PS. We have a whole lot of things lined up to share with you this year. We hope you will be as excited about them as we are. Watch out for more details soon…

But for now check out How to Improve Employee Performance through Coaching and let us know what you think. That link again: