How to Deploy Coaching Skills as a Plan to Upskill Leaders

The onset of the Great Resignation can be attributed to many factors. One of these key reasons is the need for better working conditions; more so, better managers and leaders. In the current workforce, employees are looking for leaders that listen to them, understand, motivate them, and ensure they are recognized and rewarded for their efforts. 

That’s where implementing coaching skills can help a business upskill its leaders. Coaching is a process through which an experienced professional helps individuals get motivated, believe in themselves, and create self-discipline and awareness. Deploying the below skills that coaches use to achieve these goals can help upskill your business leaders. 

Asking Powerful Questions

Professional coaches always ask open-ended questions, which helps eliminate static answers. A ‘yes’ or ‘no’ line of questioning leaves little to no room for the coach to deduce enough information. This, of course, leaves a lot of much-needed details from being unanswered or open to interpretation. 

Asking powerful open-ended questions is a skill every leader should have if they want to know and understand what their employees feel and think. Powerful questions leave an avenue for one to think and explore the question before answering. Similarly, their answers will be well thought out and reflect their thought leadership and true feelings. 

Using Emotional Intelligence 

Emotional intelligence (EQ) is a building factor for any leader to succeed. It is the ability to be aware of and understand one’s emotions and those around you. High emotional intelligence allows a leader to listen, understand, empathize and be open to new or opposing information. 

But emotional intelligence should not be limited to micro-coaching only. It can be implemented in the work environment to improve performance and retain talent. In fact, leaders with high emotional intelligence are more likely to achieve their targets and retain employees than their counterparts. 

Given the changing dynamics in the current workforce, leaders with emotional intelligence are necessary for all organizations. Employees are looking for a working environment where they are heard, valued, and motivated. In addition, they are looking for a workplace where they can build strong and open relationships with colleagues and line managers. 

When upskilling leaders with emotional intelligence, you are looking for opportunities that will enable them to learn how to:

  • Identify and manage their emotions, attitude, and thoughts so they do not interfere with the relationship with their team
  • Identify, manage and resolve any stress, pressure, or tension in their team before it boils over 
  • Be great listeners, empathetic, and understanding of their team’s concerns and needs
  • Nurture and grow relationships using a high degree of self-management and awareness

Personalizing Development 

Successful coaching sessions revolve around a holistic and personalized approach. We are all unique, with varying characters, thoughts, and emotions. A personalized approach to coaching that caters to each individual’s differences and needs leads to high success rates. 

Applying the same in the work environment can lead to excellent results. For example, rather than implementing a one-size-suits-all upskilling program, why not let the leaders be part of their development plans? This involves letting them on in the development plans where they can contribute to what excites them at work, what they want to learn, and how they like to do it. You can also allow them to choose their upskilling path. 

For starters, they feel they are in charge of the what, how, when, and where aspects of their development that caters to their individual upskilling needs. Second, it shows them they are listened to, understood, and valued as individuals, not just team members.

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