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Just like in sports, coaching your team helps individuals perform at their best. Through coaching, you can improve individual and team performance, boost employee engagement, and help grow your service and product quality. Effective employee coaching and mentorship programs lead to higher levels of employee engagement, which ultimately improves your bottom line.

Whether you want to refine your current employee coaching program or start a new initiative at your organization, it helps to know some best practices. Here are some tips on improving your coaching and mentoring programs:

You should start by setting realistic goals.

The first step to a successful team coaching program is defining achievable, yet challenging, goals. Be clear that you are coaching your team on a new process or helping them develop a new skill (it is about them getting better). Set goals that the team members feel comfortable with and excited to reach. Whenever possible, try to develop your teams and your organization at the same time.

You need to determine a weakness.

Think about areas your team members may need to improve. Do they often struggle with productivity? Time management? Organization? You must highlight these weak spots, so you know how to create opportunities to help your team.

You need to be sure the roles align.

You might have the right people in your organization, but they may not be in the right positions. That is why coaching is so important; it allows leaders to manage their teams according to their abilities and skills. It also makes it easier for managers to assign members to the teams that best suit them.

You must stay on top of the process.

This step is critical in the team coaching process because it ensures you keep track of how your team members are progressing and improving. If your team has any questions or concerns regarding their development, make sure to have a positive and informative coaching conversation with them. However, be sure to do so in a way that provides autonomy and encouragement. The best coaches do not micromanage but find ways to guide with a positive outlook.

You should always share your feedback.

As a coach, it is important to deliver constructive feedback in a way that inspires your team rather than demoralizes them. Leaders need to be honest with their team members. This means you should provide positive feedback while also sharing with them what they could have done better. This is called Radical Candor. Taking time to help them understand with specific examples will boost their morale and inspire them to do better.

When done right, an employee coaching program benefits both you and your team. Your team members end up feeling valued and supported while you end up strengthening their skills and boosting their performance. To make team coaching successful, be clear about your development goals, ensure your team members are in the right roles, commit to tracking progress, and offer productive feedback. And this will help you thrive.

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