Coaching and Mentoring
Introduction
What is Coaching and Mentoring?

Coaching and Mentoring embraces the “Team Building” ethic and group exercises designed to reach agreement on how to use the increased knowledge and skills to develop the business of the investor who is paying for the exercise. In this way, success is removed from the individual and transferred to the team, and thus survives individual staff movements.

Delivering “Coaching and Mentoring” therefore requires a full understanding of the human brain, the perception of learning and of the range of psychometric profiles of potential trainees.

Mentoring is about offering knowledge, insight, perspective or wisdom in the company context and is useful to the recipient with regards to job level specifics. It is about being a career friend who gives knowledge, advice and encouragement. A mentor is someone who has a genuine interest in overseeing and supporting the career and development of another person outside the normal manager and subordinate relationship.

Mentors need to be flexible, accessible and prepared to offer support when needed. Evidence suggests that care in 'matching' mentor and mentoree is crucial and that mentees generally feel empowered when offered an element of choice in this.

Coaching is about inventing a new future from the individual's own possibilities, evoking answers from the individual and exploring alternatives in terms of performance, the achievement of goals and outcomes that are work focused.The environment should be 'conducive to learning' - ie show that you support learning, recognise that mistakes will be made and encourage questions.

The common elements of coaching and mentoring are that they both focus on sustainable peak performance and seek to foster genuine peak performance within thriving teams in organisations. Coaching is about facilitating. It is about aligning the resources of people and organisations while facing increased competition, changing conditions, higher outputs and results.

Coaching and Mentoring both help define the solutions people need when faced with problems and challenges. They allow people to 'step back' and take a second look at what they faced with and help them design the future they really want. They are both concerned with making a tangible impact to achieve results.

Coverage

Coaching covers a range of development needs:

  • to help bring about improvements where people are under-performing
  • to 'challenge' and stretch those with high potential
  • to enhance current skills
  • to re-motivate people
  • to prepare people for new roles
  • to prepare people for delegation

    Coaching process

    IDENTIFY THE NEED Recognising an employee's strengths and weaknesses helps you to coach them more effectively - leading to more focused development.

    RECOGNISE OPPORTUNITIES Coaching opportunities present themselves within day-to-day activities:

  • when someone is new to the department
  • when new responsibilities are to be delegated
  • as a means of meeting additional work demands
  • to provide cover for absence

    BRIEF THE INDIVIDUAL The coach's role is to facilitate - too much direction can feel autocratic to the person being coached, too little can feel as if the coach has no real interest. It is usually more effective to get the job-holder involved in anticipating problems/issues themselves, equally important is for them to be looking for their own solutions.

    AGREE OUTCOME Agree objectives - well-stated learning objectives set out what the job-holder will be able to do at the end of the coaching experience. Having decided what the outcome should be, the coach (and the job-holder) will be able to monitor progress and, on completion, will be able to identify any remaining gap between actual and desired performance.

    CARRY OUT THE ACTIVITY Having identified the most appropriate opportunities for observing the employee, the coach must put aside time for regular observation and discussion. The job-holder is given the opportunity to try out new skills and techniques in a work setting.

    REVIEW LEARNING An essential part of learning, the coach should encourage the job-holder to self-appraise. Building trust is important. The coach should be careful that any feedback he/she gives is constructive and does not demotivate the learner - people learn more quickly if they know what they are doing well in addition to what they are doing wrong!

    COACHING IS A CONTINUOUS PROCESS.. Learning should be continuous - so back to stage one!

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