Let’s face it, coaching remains quite mis-understood in many organisations. Managers think they are coaching but at best they are advising and mentoring, very often with a question mark at the end of their advice, for example that classic question, “have you thought about doing such and such?”

With that mis-understanding comes fear and resistance of coaching, here we share the five key resistors to coaching in organisations and how our programmes overcome them:

  1. Managers are saying “I really don’t have time to coach”, very often thinking about the executive coaching type format that enjoy one, maybe two hour long conversations. And they’re right, we quite agree that as a busy leader if you can’t have impactful coaching conversations in less than ten minutes, you haven’t got time to coach!
  2. The next resistor might be, “that’s all very well but even so, I still don’t have time to coach along with all the performance conversations, initiatives and meetings I need to have”. And they’re right again, we like to steer busy leaders towards thinking about being more coach-like, not as an add on but an instead of in terms of their leadership approach. Tweaking and transforming their current approach from less telling and advising, to being more curious. Allowing the insight, learning and growth mindset to come from the other person.
  3. Following this, resistor number three might be the statement, “frankly I don’t want to be a coach, it’s a little bit weird and I’ve had a negative experience in the past with a so called ‘executive coach'”. And we would agree, there are enough coaches out there, you don’t want to be just another coach, what you do want to be is your authentic self and just more coach-like in the way you lead and the conversations you have on a daily basis. There is a difference.
  4. Resistor number four is the mis-understanding or mis-interpretation of not knowing exactly what coaching is. Managers and leaders avoid it because we don’t understand what it is or how to do it properly. Very often the feedback in our programmes in terms of what has been most useful for people is a clear understanding of what coaching actually is. And here is how we would define it as a fundamental shift in behaviour – ‘Stay curious for longer, rush to action and advice more slowly’. It’s not about never tell or advise people what to do, but find the right balance. Start with the other person when possible in terms of uncovering those valuable learning opportunities and ability for people to self develop their own capability. Science has proven people don’t learn by being told what to do, they learn by reflecting on what just happened.
  5. Last but not least, resistor number five is the usual question that drives anyone to do anything, the ‘what’s in it for me?’ question. Well, as a busy leader when you show up being more coach-like (instead of a rampant advice monster) you get to work less hard and have more impact. You’re no longer getting involved and busying yourself with the challenges and issues your team face, but you are being proactively supportive in helping them to realise solutions and actions to move forward with positive impact.

Our programmes give busy leaders the tools to overcome these five resistors. We teach 10 minute coaching that sticks, helping drive behaviour and culture change towards a growth mindset. We give busy managers the tools to be more coach-like rather than be executive coaches. We give them the tools to build three fundamental habits at work, ‘be lazy’ (stop jumping in to rescue), ‘be curious’ (instead of telling and advising the whole time) and ‘be often’ (a regular drip feed beats the occasional flash flood when it comes to growing the capability and strength of our teams).

If you’d like to know more about our coaching and feedback programmes, please contact us at – enquiries@catalystpld.com