I’ve worked with many clients in terms of coaching and the problem I find is not encouraging them to start coaching but to persist with it. 

This is all about motivation. Ultimately, whenever we are trying to adopt a new behaviour, we are faced with the battle between the reasons to persist and the reasons for quitting.  When we want to adopt a new habit, if the reasons to quit outweigh the reason to persevere, we often fail to change our behaviour.  Some examples of this, that I’m sure you’ve experienced are adopting a new diet regime, trying to save more of your personal income, or to setting aside 30 minutes each day to read with your child.

In this blog, I identify how you can strengthen the reasons to endure with coaching, while in next week’s blog, we will examine weakening the reasons to quit.

Reasons to Persist With Coaching

While there are many reasons to carry on with coaching, here are 3 ways I believe are the most important to strengthen your resolve:

  1. Measure the success of coaching. If you know your coaching is working and the employee knows they are progressing, then you are likely to persist. However, if you are not measuring your coaching effectiveness, then you won’t identify with its success; or, if the employee cannot see their growth, they may question its usefulness. This is more powerful than you may believe. In the book Progress Principle[1], the authors identify that 76% of an employee’s best days at work contain a sense of making progress – head and shoulders above anything else that happens.
  1. Strengthen Your Identity as a Coach. The more you believe that you are a coach and identify as a purveyor of high-quality feedback, the more you will persist with coaching. Remind yourself, as Daniel Goleman[2] states, that coaching “is the least used leadership skill’. Great leaders develop their people. Google identified that the #1 trait of successful managers, at Google, was that they were a ‘good coach’[3]. By coaching, you can far exceed other leaders who do not identify as a coach.
  1. Social motivation. Surround yourself with other coaches who can support you, encourage you and give you feedback to grow. Coaching can be a lonely pursuit but, if you have a built-in support system you will feel like you are on the inside looking out at those who don’t coach rather than on the outside looking in. Your support system will understand the effort you are putting into coaching; they can share coaching tips; they can appreciate your victories, and empathize with your difficulties.  They count on you, and you can count on them.

Check in next week when I share tips on how to weaken the reason to quit coaching!

[1] Amabile, Teresa, and Steven Kramer. The progress principle: Using small wins to ignite joy, engagement, and creativity at work. Harvard Business Press, 2011.

[2] Goleman, Daniel. “Leadership that gets results.” (2000).

[3] Garvin, David A. “How Google sold its engineers on management.” Harvard Business Review 91.12 (2013): 74-+.