Action Business Coaching
Business coaching is all about taking action. In management and leadership, decisions have to be made. They may not always be popular; they may not always workout 100% the way you wanted them to. However, you can always live with the reality, knowledge, fact, realisation that you did something about it!
Let's face it, how did you get to the stage when you first thought; 'I might have to make a decision or take some action'?
Is Doing Nothing Really a Viable Decision?
There's evidence to support this certainly and the saying that accompanies this will be along the lines of 'Well it certainly won't get any worse if I do nothing - I hope' or 'Let's just wait a while longer and see what happens'.
Now these are all viable options that need to be weighed up then fed through your problem solving and decision making models. However, we still come back to the reality of: now we're here, I've got to take action and sometimes doing nothing can be the correct action to take.
The Danger of Doing Nothing
Of course, doing nothing can also be unwise. Quite often problems which arise do not simply disappear on their own without any dedicated action taken to remove or overcome them.
If a problem has surfaced, it is usually due to underlying issues which can also cause similar or other problems further down the line. Even if this problem were somehow to disappear on its own without any positive remedial action, it is quite likely it will occur again in the future, possibly a lot worse than now.
Business coaching is an experience that allows you to: Look at the Vision you desire, identify the Obstacles that you put in the way, Re-construct the obstacles to help overcome them and then decide on the necessary Action steps that need to be taken to achieve - VORA.
VORA is a proven and forward thinking business coaching model. We all know GROW, TGROW, GROWN and that many business coaches get hung up around the reality stage. Well, VORA doesn't do that; it focuses on the vision you have and creates that image so vividly that you can succinctly articulate it. Within business coaching, it's important that the ecology of what you're striving to achieve is looked into and the obstacles that you, circumstance, fate, policy, economy and more may put in your way.
By re-constructing the challenges you face, you'll be able to anticipate and plan for them and sometimes even accept them but, even more importantly, to take Action to achieve your Vision therefore making it a reality. That is the power of Action Business Coaching.
Managers, Business Coaching and Decisive Action
Company managers will typically be the ones who identify when action is needed, implement necessary changes, and are responsible for ensuring it is implemented efficiently and correctly. As a consequence, there is a tremendous amount of pressure and stresses upon the shoulders of senior managers and directors, which is why executive coaching is so sought after nowadays in order to help them through the whole process.
Those that do seek the benefits of business coaching and executive coaching will quickly learn of the need for strong and definite actions to be taken once a decision (which also needs to be clear and decisive) has been made.
A tentative or hesitant decision will give off the impression to staff members that the manager does not fully believe in the particular course of action themselves. In such a circumstance, it will be extremely difficult for a manager to convince others that the changes will bring positive rewards, which will make it unlikely that what has been decided will be carried out effectively due to a lack of employee buy-in.
This is why managers also need to be strong leaders, as the two similar yet distinct disciplines are essential for a person to be an excellent head of others. This is proven by the title and syllabus of the ILM Level 3 Award in Leadership and Management qualification which, as the name suggests, focuses on both management and leadership skills.
How Will Business Coaching Sessions Help a Manager with Taking Action?
Learning about the need for decisive action is one thing, but actually putting it into practice is something quite different altogether. This is especially true if the manager is not a particularly forceful or assertive character, and sometimes finds it hard to come across as decisive and supremely confident with their decisions.
A good business coach can work wonders in such a scenario. Rather than providing reassurance, they will be able to work with the manager by talking through all of the pertinent steps, including:
- Why there was a need for a decision to be made, including what problems were identified as needing to be addressed and the urgency with which they need to be dealt with
- The thought process and rationale behind arriving at the decision
- How much does the manager believe in the decision i.e. do they back their own judgement?
- How they will/are making the changes, including how they communicated what needs to be different, and also why things need to change.
- What methods have or will be put in place to evaluate the success or failure of the changes made?
- Thinking through further issues which may arise as a result of the changes e.g. an employee backlash before they occur so that the manager can be well-prepared to deal with them and will not be caught out.
Why Are Action Plans So Important in Business Coaching for Employees?
Action Plans Drive the Changes Spoken About During Business Coaching
Whilst business coaching is highly effective for employee development when performed correctly, a failure to draw up and take action plans seriously can put a severe limitation upon the potential effectiveness of the coaching efforts.
This is because without a written action plan and subsequent meetings to discuss and evaluate the success and effectiveness of the plan's points, what is discussed and suggested in a business coaching session will be largely a waste of time as little or no changes will be made back in the workplace.
As one of the major objectives of business coaching is to get employees to make alterations and adapt their working practices in order to increase their productivity, a failure to attempt change and evaluate its' success (or otherwise) will greatly undermine the process.
The Manager's Attitude Will Have a Significant Bearing on a Successful Outcome
If the business coaching is being performed by a manager as opposed to an external business coach, a failure by the manager to assist with the creation of an action plan and - even more so assuming one has been created - the failure to spend time assessing the progress made by the employee in its implementation will convey to them the impression (rightly or otherwise) that the manager does not take either their development or the whole business coaching process seriously.
This will have an adverse effect upon the motivation of the employee in question to actively make changes in the workplace. With neither side trying particularly hard, very little if anything will change and no progress will be made in terms of increasing the employee's performance at work.
Managers Need to Follow the Coaching Process Through to the End
So even whilst managers should be congratulated for making the initial effort to recognise that an employee needs assistance and has set time aside to dedicate to business coaching, they still need to ensure that having done so they then also put in the effort to make the coaching sessions, action plans and evaluation of progress a key priority which retains a lot of focus and attention.
Business Coaching from the BCF Group
Our coaches all have relevant, real-world experiences of a wide variety of corporate issues. Whatever it is you or others within your business need assistance in dealing with, it is likely that they have seen it all before!
For more information regarding business coaching and how we can assist you and your organisation, please use the links at the top of the page to navigate around the site, and to view details of our open courses such as the ILM Level 5 coaching course. Alternatively, contact us by telephone on 0844 800 3295 or send us an online contact form by clicking on the button below.