Why managers need to be coaches for their team members in order for each member to perform at their peak.
Everyone needs help and encouragement to perform at their highest level. Eric Schmidt, the CEO of Google, was famously reluctant to get a coach when he started in his position. What finally changed his mind was this question from a friend: Do tennis players have coaches? The point was not lost on Eric, and he now greatly appreciates having a someone that guides him in decision making and leadership responsibilities.
What is great about coaching others, and why should managers focus on it?
A coach is a someone who helps another person think through situations and allows them see things from different perspectives. The coach is not necessarily going to give the coachee the answer, whether they have it or not, nor will they want to just provide easy solutions.
One of the main responsibilities of managers is to act as a coach to the team members they manage.
When managing others, or even oneself, it is difficult to see the other’s point of view or to play devil’s advocate and hence be a coach. Managers see themselves as the ones that need to have the answers and fix the challenges. On the other hand, coaches take the time to assess the situation and then help teach team members see the situation from all perspectives.
A good coach will:
Managers must always remember that the most valuable asset of any organization is its team members. As with any valuable asset, team members must be taken care of with constant diligence. When managers act as (good) coaches they will help their team members bask in their strengths and perform at their best.