If you’ve been thinking about hiring a coach for one of your reports, check your intentions. Do NOT hire a coach for an employee if you’re using the coach to avoid the tedious, frustrating task of motivating a resistant learner; giving candid feedback on sensitive subjects; or delivering a tough message about poor performance or limited career potential. Coaching is never a substitute for effective management.

If you have an employee who needs to hear messages you’re uncomfortable delivering, maybe it’s you who needs the coach. A coach can support you as you clarify issues that need to be addressed, identify an effective approach for dealing with them, support you through the preparation process, and help you mine your experience for learnings which can be applied more broadly.

So, before you call a coach for someone on your team, ask yourself, “Who really needs coaching? Me or the employee?”


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