By Lauren Zervos, Ph.D., Jake Weiss, Ph.D., and Kevin Wilde
Organizations are increasingly working to build cultures around coaching given its significant, positive impact on employee development, growth and performance. All of that elevates overall organizational effectiveness and drives bottom-line results.
While many companies have experienced success through this approach, growth often stalls, leaving organizational leaders wondering how to continue strengthening and elevating this culture that has historically been so critical to driving performance.
What’s missing? An intentional and dedicated focus on the other, vitally important, side of the coaching equation – the coachability of those receiving coaching. In other words, almost all the attention and investment thus far targeted improving one side of the coaching equation – the coaching side – leaving most coaching cultures “incomplete.”
To highlight this phenomenon, take Company X, which experienced immense success and growth over a three-year period – performance increased by 60% year over year, the employee retention rate remained above 95% and the overall company expanded its market share by 10%.
Leaders attributed much of their success to building a robust, strong coaching culture, yet when these numbers started to plateau, they realized they were missing an essential element to maximize the coaching equation – the coachability of the individuals receiving coaching.
This article overviews how Company X laid the foundation for its strong coaching culture, and then how they took this culture to the next level by integrating coachability.
Company X harnessed a variety of coaching practices at all levels across the organization to accelerate growth and drive results. For example, beyond the traditional manager-employee coaching employed throughout the organization, employees were frequently coaching one another as well as providing upward feedback and coaching to their managers.
This coaching culture that Company X adopted is more formally defined as a culture in which employees of all levels continuously engage in coaching behaviors to support, teach, influence and collaborate with one another.
To create this high-impact coaching culture, Company X leveraged and invested the resources, time and money to engrain coaching throughout the organization and foster commitment from the top down. Specifically, Company X:
The degree to which employees demonstrate ownership over their development and performance by:
While Company X did a great job establishing their coaching culture, they hit a ceiling, failing to grow any further, with other competitors close on their tail. Company X realized they’re missing an essential piece – coachability. To accelerate, expand and maximize the impact of its initial coaching culture efforts, Company X intentionally integrated coachability into their culture. Specifically, to cultivate its coaching and coachability culture, Company X:
Company X expanded its existing coaching framework to explicitly define the role and responsibilities of the coachee, setting expectations for how coachees should effectively engage in the coaching process and simultaneously creating a more partner-oriented, collaborative approach to coaching.
What impact did Company X see after one year of integrating coachability into the fabric of their coaching culture? Specifically:
Integrating coachability within the culture allowed Company X to build on its approach, amplify the benefits of coaching, stay ahead of the competition and accelerate the path to its goals without having to disrupt successful coaching approaches.
How might coachability contribute to the effectiveness of your company’s coaching initiatives and culture?
Lauren Zervos, Ph.D., is head, organizational effectiveness and learning, for Coachability Consultants. Email Lauren at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jake Weiss, Ph.D., is president & CEO of Coachability Consultants. Email Jake at jake. email@example.com.
Kevin Wilde is executive leadership fellow, University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management. Email Kevin at firstname.lastname@example.org.