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Creating a coaching culture



I am a trainer within a customer service environment and we have been given an objective/challenge to create a coaching culture within customer services. We have firstly selected a group of people, both managers and agents to create a coaching forum where we get together every few months (the first one to commence in June!)to discuss what coaching can be seeen within the area and the pro's and con's of what we are doing. However, we need to put a plan together of how we are going to implement this and the way in which we can measure the success or lack of!
Can anyone offer any suggestions and ideas please??

Frances Kane

6 Responses

  1. Consider Coach/Coachee Styles

    One thing to consider is the impact on the coaching relationships of the coaches’ and coachees’ styles.

    Building trust and rapport is key to the success of a coaching relationship and I’m sure you’ll be factoring that into your planning and any training you may offer, but we’ve noticed that a coach will have their own preferred way of coaching someone and the coachee will have their own preference as to how they are coached. If there’s a mis-match, then the relationship can break down.

    This is irrespective of the coaching model you use.

    We’ve found that by using a personality styles tool, you can help both parties to see their preferences and especially, how the coach should flex their style to “tune in” to each coachee.

    All together, this will make the experience more pleasurable for everyone, less of a perceived drain on resources and help to establish the coaching culture.

  2. How to create a coaching culture
    Hi Frances
    We have helped several sales/customer service organisations (Johnson & Johnson, Britvic Soft Drinks, Smith & Nephew Healthcare and Avon Cosmetics) to create a coaching culture based on using one of our on-line 360 appraisal questionnaires which focuses totally on coaching skills – this sets a benchmark, creates awareness of what a good coach should be demonstrating, highlights key strengths and development needs and measures success/performance improvement over time. Please visit our web site
    where you will find case studies/testimonials from these clients.
    Please feel free to contact me for any further advice.
    Valerie Heritage
    The Communication Challenge

  3. In designing the implementation of a coaching culture you need t
    It is great that your organisation wishes to implement a coaching culture, however before embarking on any activity I suggest that you gain absolute clarity from your sponsor regarding the business issues he/she is seeking to address or the business performance outcomes he/she wishes to acquire. Until you have these expressed in SMART terms then you neither have anything to measure your activity against nor can you start designing your development activities.
    If these are quantifiable then measurement is easy – if they are qualitative then ask the sponsor and others to desciribe what it would be like to achieve the outcome in sensory terms eg We want a high performing and supportive environment – might be dominated by a certain type of conversation/s, people might report feeling invigorated, in the flow, valued etc. Once this is articulated and agreed then start designing your processes. These might include,developing coaching capability through short courses, supported by frequent peer learning sessions. Maybe applauding or rewarding succesful coaches remembering that not everyone may want to either be a coach or be coached. trust this helps

  4. Developing a Coaching Style
    Hi, I carried out a similar exercise in a very large organisation. The key to success is in:

    a) Providing a couple of models, so that people can adopt the one that best suits their style. I used the GROW and 3D models.

    b) Measurements- remember if it isn’t measured, it doesn’t get done. Won’t elaborate on this as Grant has covered this off very well.

    c) Changing Habits. It takes 21 days to change a habit and only if the new model is being used continuously during this period. In the work environment unless the team is very small, then, this is probably unlikely due to day-to-day pressures. Therefore, treat this as a cultural change and recognise that it is a process and will take time.

    d) What is the perception of ‘coaching’ as you may need to bring in external help for the first meeting or two to demonstrate to Line Managers that this is a powerful skill set which will enhance their career, make their role easier and bring out the best in their people. It is also extremely rewarding.

    e) Before starting to train the team ensure that the Senior Management team supports this initiative and that they then lead by example and use coaching as a style. An external coach can have the greatest value at this level.

    Then every opportunity needs to be used to practice so that styles are changed. When I was a General Manager, I used to get managers to resolve issues at meetings, etc using the coaching style. Feedback was then given on both the subject and how well they carried out the coaching method.

    This needs to be a push by the whole organisation. It really will not work if you are expected to run one training programme for one set of people only.

    Then understanding that each individual has a different level of awareness, you will need to either coach people on a one to one basis, either in their regular performance meeting or sit in on their one to one’s with their direct reports. Follow this up with refresher courses on a regular basis.

    The coaching forums you are setting up are a great start as you can demonstrate in these the incredible impact that coaching can result in. Once you have convinced the group then you will end up with a core team who can assist in developing others, but make sure they are proficient at it first.

    Good luck!

    If you would like to know more about the opportunities and barriers that I came across then drop me an email and I will be happy to discuss.

  5. First know where you’re going!
    I guess the first thing is to ask yourselves why you’re choosing to implement a coaching culture…and what you’re all hoping for in terms of “desired outcome”.

    Two simple questions certainly, but when you’ve got the answers you’ll be able to create some SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Ritten and Timed) objectives against which you can measure progress.

    On a scale of 1-10, declare “where you are now” against your objectives. Then agree an action plan of what you’re going to do to achieve your vision and what milestones need to be achieved in order to increase your “scores”.

    The key is in the timing and getting everyone’s buy-in. Often it’s easier with someone at the helm…someone who everyone trusts but who has no axe to grind.

    Good luck…and keep us posted Frances as to progress!

  6. some great advice…
    has been given.

    But to me misses the point.
    Why a coaching culture?
    Who wants it?
    How will they know when they have it?
    Are mangers in this area being coached themselves by their managers?

    IMHO it is not the role of trainers and coaches to create culture but to develop it with the owners of the change.

    Without ownership from the top and leading from example the journey will be a long and difficult one.

    Measure the culture of the organisation – where are you now? gain commitment from your manager as to how this ‘success’ will be measured.

    good luck

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