HR and senior leaders play a special role in making sure that coaching is successful in an organization. One of the ways is by positioning executive coaching correctly according to Linda Miller in a new article for The Ken Blanchard Companies’ Ignite newsletter.
As Miller, a Master Certified Coach and Global Liaison for coaching explains, “It’s important that coaching is positioned as an investment in development and not as something punitive. You want executives to be looking forward to being tapped on the shoulder for coaching rather than fretting if they get that phone call that says, ‘Guess what, you have an executive coach who has been assigned to help you.’”
Miller also goes on to identify that it is important that a coaching initiative be coupled with sponsorship. This means having senior people in the organization who are in support of coaching and advocate for it as a part of executive development—but not necessarily mandate it. As Miller explains, “There needs to be buy-in by the participants. So, for example, if we find out that a leader is being required to use coaching instead of being invited to participate, it is a very subtle but very important difference. Executive coaches need to know how to work with this situation if it happens.”
Finally, Miller cautions that confidentiality must be in place and strictly enforced if executives are expected to share freely. If confidentiality is not in place, that news will spread like wildfire among participants which could prevent honest conversations from happening. Any breach of confidentiality will affect all of the coaching that is going on in the organization.
You can read more of Miller’s thoughts on executive coaching by accessing the complete Ignite article here. Also be sure to check out a free webinar that Miller will be conducting on August 19 entitled Executive Development–How to Use Coaching Effectively