There is a fundamental distinction that separates the best leaders from the rest. It’s not based necessarily on IQ, strategy, vision, or even passion – although these are all important characteristics. The fundamental difference typically came down to one thing: They didn’t act like managers; they acted like coaches.
Like world-class leaders may not always have the best talent, but they always seem to get the best out of the talent they have. The main reason for this that they understand that the only way to systematically improve individual performance is by giving constructive coaching and developmental feedback. There is a direct correlation between the quantity and the quality of coaching a person receives and their level of improvement.
Coaching and developing people is an ongoing process that is tied to everything that you do as a leader. These best best practices have been simplified into a four-step process.
What you believe about who God is will determine your behavior. If you believe God is who He says He is, that will affect your day to day decisions. Another controller of your behavior is how you think. If you believe your job is to coach and develop your team in order to help them perform to the maximum of their capability, you’re going to behave like a coach.
Coaching is not just something that you must do, it’s something that you must become. When coaching becomes apart of your identity, your behaviors will automatically change.
2. Create the environment
Once your understand that your job is to get every ounce of potential from everyone on your team, then you’ve got to create the environment that allows coaching to take place. The first part of this involves an evaluation of your own leadership and asking, “How am I doing? What can I do better?”
As a coach, you set the standard for others to follow. Your personal example is the most powerful leadership tool you have.
3. Transform the conversation
Once the coaching environment is created, you’ve got to lay the foundation for weekly coaching conversations. Keep in mind…
- Celebrate small wins, not just big ones.
- Long-term success requires short-term focus.
4. Embrace mistakes and coachable moments.
Productivity can only be achieved through identifying and perfecting the seemingly small things consistently done right over time. But…we seem to learn more from our mistakes than we do from our successes. As you review and give positive reinforcement, it’s also important to take note of mistakes as well. But remember that the objective is to coach, not criticize.