Executive Coaching

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Scenario

Dylan is a part of a future leaders program at Oxycorp developing the future leaders through the use of hand on teaching and learning. Recruited for functional excellence and his developing leadership capabilities throughout on the job projects. His managers have recognised during his rotations the need for increased time management, presentation skills duly noted was his incapacity to have decisive team management skills.

Executive Summary

This report was commissioned to examine the benefits and applications of implementing a coaching program within Oxycorp. It identifies situations in which coaching is applicable, as situations in which the organization can leverage the potential benefits of Coaching. As such, incorporates situational analysis, discusses the context of coaching as well as techniques and methods of coaching programs, to assist in consideration of implementation.

The context of coaching raises awareness to the key reasons for the implementation of a coaching program, it reiterates the ever changing business landscape in which retention and development of leaders become pivotal in organisation success. Further more it reveals the traits of effective leadership and the benefits attributed to the individual performance and organizational success. It further explores, the techniques of coaching in developing skill and improving performance. Techniques Oxycorp may implement include 360 degrees performance for developmental planning which has its advantages and drawback. Research into coaching methods points to conversational coaching and the facilitation of the simplistic GROW model, which is simplistic to use and allows for goal setting as well as raising self awareness. Contrarily it also discusses the models advantages as well as drawbacks, in self congruent goal setting.

The report goes on to offer a tailored coaching program, which provides an overview of the coaching program constituting program design and objective setting, as well as group coaching to realign individual with company goals and objective to achieve umbrella organizational learning. Further this a break down, of coaching conversations within individual sessions used to improve skills to increase wellness and job performance.

Finally, the report offers recommendations for Oxycorp, by highlighting the benefits of coaching to improving professional performance, wellbeing and effectiveness of the organization and indidivudial. It also emphasizes the need to create a safe, supportive environment and personally valued goas for coaching practices. The combination of these three facets would enhance the overall performance of the individual and organization.

The context of coaching

In a highly competitive economy it is critical that organisations, attract, motivate, retain high performing and talented employees. Coaching is a form of developmental intervention (Hall, 1999). Coaching involves a self learning process, whereby providing advice to handle specific challenges such as managing inertia, dealing with issues pertaining to the organisation, as well as working with people form different cultures (Yulk, 2010). Therefore, Sperry notes the three main spheres of executive coaching including skills, performance and developmental (Sperry,2013). Executive coaching is thereby a collaborative association, where by a trained professional has an awareness of an organisation dynamics. Hence is able to improve an executive’s skills, effectiveness in communicating corporate visions and goals, foster better team performance, organisational productivity which ultimately leads to professional and personal development (Sperry, 2008, p.36)

Witherspoon and White (1996) defined primary constructs of coaching involving:

People are core to an organisation success, its employees whom interact with customers, embody organisational culture and drive processes and operations. Therefore, a key to organisational success is having effective leadership. Yulk defines the tri-components of effective leadership as supportive, developing and recognising (Yulk, 2012). Dyer and Hopwood (2014) notes that effective leaders turn strategy into action, developing and integrating visions to make jobs more satisfying and giving insightful feedback, supporting, counselling, developing teamwork.

  1. Learning a new skill
  2. Aiding and bettering performance in current job to prevent derailment
  3. To prepare future leadership roles
  4. Exercise a leadership agenda

Good leaders are able to display confidence without the need for self aggrandisement, bringing out the best in others by promoting team work, spurring action and inspiring as shared sense of confidence. The pre-existing needs for organisational coaching include the need to promote learning, aid behavioural change and performance improvement to improve organisational outcomes. Coaching allows the opening of communication channels and increased job satisfaction leading to increase employee confidence and capabilities, hence increased staff retention and performance.

Components of Effective Leadership

Components Advantages to the Individual Advantages to the organisation
Supportive Leadership Helps maintain interpersonal relationships Managers whom are friendly are more likely to win friendship and loyaltyReduces individual stress Employee commitment and retention are directly related to how they are treated by there managers (Joo, Sushko, Mclean, 2012). Increased emotional ties creates a synergistic workforceCreates an atmosphere of reduced stressIncreases job satisfaction, higher stress tolerance, less absenteeism and fewer vacanciesChanges to organisational structures have transformed the role of traditional leaders to more supportive coaches. Hence an importance is place upon creating an organisational learning culture and the co- creation of social relations between leaders, manager and employees (Joo, Sushko, Mclean, 2012).
Developing Increases personal skills, facilitation of job adjustment and career advancement.Leads to a greater sense of self confidence Creates a sense of satisfaction in the helping others grow and develop The development of self efficacy and increases the embodiment of responsibility Fosters mutually cooperative relationships atmosphere Skill training in organisations leads to an increased sense of satisfaction and performance as well as leadership effectiveness Leads to higher employee commitment, higher performance, better preparation of employees for advancement Aids organisation reputation for talent management and acquisitionThe best employers spend the resources of time and money in developing leaders and high performance employee to allow them to reach there potential (Bennet and Bennet, 2003)
Recognising Praising individuals and showing appreciation for affective performance. Allows the individual to feel valued Allows organisation to strengthen the desired behaviours and task commitment Aids the development a high performance organisationLeads to individual and collective personal accomplishments and commitment

(Yulk, 2012)

Techniques of Coaching

Flatter and leaner organisation structures lead organisations to recognise the need for increased communication and interpersonal skills necessary for influencing employees, adapting to dynamic change and managing diversifying workforces (Joo, Sushko and McLean, 2012). Executive coaching is defined as the process of a one on one relationship between coach and coaches with the ultimate goal of enhancing behavioural change, by increasing self awareness and self learning, thus leading to the increased success of the individual and organisation.

According to the executive coaching the four constructs of executive coaching include:

Developmental Coaching

  1. Developmental Coaching
  2. Targeted Coaching
  3. Career Coaching
  4. Personal and Life Coaching
    • (Cleveland Consulting Group, 2016)
  5. Developmental planning where coaching is directed towards an individual’s performance. This is whereby a coach analyses individual performance normally through the use of a 360 degrees’ feedback and develops a development plan. With the end results being goal orientated, sessions are focused and short term directed (Cleveland Consulting Group, 2016).

    In order understand and executive’s competencies, coaches collect data to help clarify focal competencies for coaching engagement. Areas of focal interest may be development of interpersonal skills and leadership competencies related to influence, conflict management, giving feedback and motivating subordinates. Coaches would conduct extensive analysis of executive’s strengths and weaknesses and compare them against role requirements and develop a template for development. With 360 degrees’ feedback allows leaders to understand their impact on individual behaviours. Performance coaching help employees understand the requirements of their jobs, what are the competencies needed to fulfil those requirements, analyse and rectify any performance gaps to aid performance.

      Developmental Coaching
    Advantages Can be easy to implement in the form of online coaching programs Used as a form or leadership development by fostering self awareness and competency 360 degrees’ feedback serves as a valid form assessment of leadership behaviours and performance which leads to a multitude of ways in developing a leader.Allows for open discussion on leader’s performance and progress as well as align visions with of employees thus allowing for the potential to unlock and strengthen organisational culture (Sikes, Jestens, Smith and Yates, 2015)
    Drawbacks 360 degree reviews maybe an information dump, this becomes an issue when executives have a tendency to be defensive about interpersonal difficultiesInvolves a lengthy process when bureaucracy is involved Lack of actionable after feedback is givenFeedback may not be totally honestSubjectivity and bias of respondent
    Scenario Dylan would benefit from developmental planning as his current performance would be analysed, as well as pinpoint areas for further development and improvement. This would also align him with the company objectives, values and goals and feel valued. Performance coaching allows Dylan to learn the requirement of his job as both internal processes and external environment changes. The most appropriate way to use coaching surveys is through by allowing Dylan to draw to his own conclusions and interpretations and develop self learning themes rather than disseminating raw commentary into rigid action plans. Third party interview may also be useful in gaining a better picture of Dylan’s strengths and weaknesses, areas that need addressing and organizational fit primarily with a positive focus rather than a negative mindset. (The executive coaching forum, 2015)

    Targeted Coaching

    This form of coaching is designed to exponentially to impart skills and knowledge upon an individual. This may be due to recent advancement and needs additional support for job specific adjustment to aid individual effectiveness skills that could be enhanced include computer skills, business acumen, time management, presentation and writing skills.

      Targeted Coaching
    Advantages New leaders coaching accelerates the assimilation and effectiveness in the new position. Allowing leaders to pinpoint as well as clarify job requirements and deliverables Developmental coaching analyses and identifies the future leaders of the organisation. Develops these key chosen individual to reach there potential through a series of assessments, competencies development as well as assistance planning and the integration of strategic projects. Succession coaching empowers individuals to have the necessary skills e.g technological skills. Presentation and communication skills aids individuals in gaining increased self awareness as well of an understanding of how they are perceived and are perceived by others. Through the implementation of video recording and observations, coaches can facilitate in providing feedback. A coaches role here could potentially change the way executives communicate with clients, tweaking tone, vocabulary, and body language in conveying he correct message.
    Disadvantages Succession coaching has a tendency to only occur in organisations that experience high volatility with increased turnover. This sometimes means that individuals may feel pressured and are not in the correct mindset for an advancement due to the difficulty of the role Time and resource as well as lack of capable coaches become a issue in leadership development
    Scenario In this instance targeted coaching would be helpful as communication skills would aid functional performance in everyday organisational life, this is because Dylan would feel better and more confident communicating to fellow collages and clients. Succession coaching is currently unnecessary as Dylan is gaining valuable experience through participative and self leading. Although developmental coaching would be an important component of Dylan’s development program aiding future competencies. A key component of Dylan’s coaching program is forging a clear personal goal and objective undertraining motives and inhibitions so that he can make the appropriately make positive changes to accomplish goals and feel more fulfilled. As a part of coaching engagements health coaching to ensure health life coaching will be incorporated subconsciously as well being of individuals is critical to organizational success. Psychological assessment maybe required to further divulge how personality factors can further enhance development and aid in behavioral changes. With high levels of drive, energy and ambition amongst the key predictors to executive success gaining a helicopter perspective

    (The Executive Coaching Forum, 2015)

    Methods of marketing Coaching Programs

    As aforementioned there are a plethora of coaching techniques each not designed to offer instantaneous solutions however foster learning and change leading to both individual and organizational success. To create this atmosphere of learning and change executive coaches may implement a series of interventions by “listening, summarizing, paraphrasing, providing feedback and interpreting and discovering links during coaching interactions (Haan, Culpin and Curd, p. 25, 2009)”. In order to facilitate coaching, coaching conversations are imperative these conversations are intentional conversations in both a formal and informal setting. Empowering executives with the necessary skills and developmental options. Coaching conversations can be centered around job performance, commitment, confidence of employee with coaching conversations aligned with organisational and role capabilities. Coaching conversations are Ask orientated whereby facilitating the process of self learning. Coaching models are similar in many ways with the primary objective of forming a confidential and trusting relationship and formulation of goals. The ACE and Goal Models are very similar in creating forward movement: ACE involves; Acknowledge (Something needs to change), Clarify (What are you trying to achieve) and Engage (Tactical approach for taking action) used establish new path leading to growth and improvement (Garrido, 2016).

    Grow Model

    The Grow Model was developed by Sir John Whitmore in 1980’s, has become a popular tool used in mentoring and coaching practices. GROW stands for

      The Grow Model
    Goal Look at the behavior you desire to change then structure change to a desired goal. (Determine objectives of the coaching session)SMART Goals are: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time boundTypes of Questions Does this goal fit with your overall career objectives?What do you want to obtain from our coaching session?What are your key areas of concern?What would you like to focus on?
    Current Reality Let the Executive explain his current reality, with a critical component being considering the starting point. (Questioning Skills and awareness of current situations)A team member tells and describe to you his current reality and solutions begin to emergeTypes of QuestionsTell me more about that … (Probing Questions)What working for you now?Have you taken any step to achieve your goals?What is happening now?? What is the effect and result of this ?
    Options Once the current reality has been established, it is time to be realistic in determining what is possible (Shift in perspective towards actions and solutions) Types of QuestionsWhat options do you have ?What else could you do ??What could you do if all the constraints were removed? Would it make this a viable option??What are the obstacles currently standing in the way??What is stopping you from doing this ??
    Way Forward Once a reality and options have been explored it is time, to commit to specific actions in order to achieve the goals (Gain commitment to action steps)Types of QuestionsWhat are the step you will be taking?What will you do to move forward??Who can help and support youSo, what will you do now, and when? What else can you do?How will you keep yourself motivated??

    Evaluations

    Like most coaching conversation, it assumes that the coach does not have complete expertise on the clients situation, with the coaches role acting as a facilitator and aids a clients self discovery and volition. The benefits of this model is in its inherent simplicity allowing for clarity in defining goals and objectives hence an excellent goal setting process. The implementation of the GROW model promotes deeper awareness, embodiment of additional responsibility and encourages proactive behaviors (Performance Consultants, 2016). It is imperative that the coaching model is used to facilitate a coaching conversation meaning that the clients progress isn’t linear and however dynamic. It is the coaches role adapt to the needs of the client, actively listening and using intuition rather than a structured programme or tackling the solely the initial goal in order for the real issues to be tackled (Yates, 2011). The model allows for the removal of emotions, in clearly defining the situation at hand as wells a clear moving forward train of thought (Wilson,2016). Although the grow model has traditionally been viewed as a on psychological model, adopts Socratic learning through the use of both open and probing questions with the desired goal of enhancing performance and reach a stated realistic goal (Passmore, 2014). Despite its simplicity and its easy application, expansively models have been developed stating the ground rule of the relationship hence developing a “Coaching partnership”.

    In this instance coaching Dylan, would begin through the identification of short comings, followed by a series of formal and informal coaching conversations to begin the behavioral change process. The GROW model would be suitable as it will allow him to self discover his own goal. This will allow him to analyse his current situation and set realistic goals, paths and options to obtain those goals. It will also allow Dylan to activate the left side of his brain through the development of creative solutions. Although the coaching and mentoring is a part of Dylan developmental program, the nature of having a coaching is imperative for organizations in a highly competitive business environments. Coaching pays an integral role talent acquisition, development and retainment. Serving the purpose of intrinsically motivating organizational members to increase workplace productivity as well as energy and enthusiasm.

    With the first stage of the coaching process described by Helen Paige as “ The context of coaching” hereby used an umbrella metaphor to set the expectations of coaching. Involvement of coaching programs can be driven by the use of internal advertisements and through networks of managers and human resources members as well as word of mouth of other whom have used a coaching programme (Paige, p.63-63, 2002). Individuals whom are coached have a tendency to be introduced to the idea by their employer. Fostering a coaching culture becomes essential, as well as the undertakings of the coach in forging a sense of accomplishment within the coaching culture. Another consideration is the timeliness of the coaching experience, Dylan must be ready and accepting of the content of the coaching programme.

    Depth and Structure of Coaching Programme

    There are six critical stages in the development of an effective coaching process

    Stages of Effective Coaching
    Establish a relationship of trust between coach and coacheeEvaluating the coachee and the professional setting in which work is conductedProviding feedback on this evaluation to the coacheeEstablishing a development plan and setting goalsImplementing the behaviors to be developed and improved Evaluating the progress achieved (Morin, 2010)

    Although theoretical underpinnings accentuate the stages a coach must be adaptable to the situations at hand playing a reactive facilitating role to understand the root of the problem when they arise. With Hall, Otazo and Hollenbeck (1999) stress the need and value of connecting personally with coaches, hence the formation of a partnership allowing coachee to talk and share about successful learnings.

    Program Overview and Structure

    Month Objectives and Activities
    April PlanningLeadership observation and dialogue Dialogue between senior executives at group and organizational meetings. With the goal to come up with a common understanding the company culture and the legitimate need for development in important areasChoosing to implement the use either internal or external coachesHighlighting and addressing area of concern within the organization as well as for line management performance within individual
    May to December (Group Coaching) Oxycorps Young Achievers ProgramConducted on a Bi weekly basis Identification and notice to Young achieves for reasons they have been selected in the respective program, with the organisastion firm belief in there abilities as well as investment into there careers and futuresHigh achievers within each cohort are divided into functional teams. Further separated with members from different functions forming groups of 4The primary goal of group coaching is to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of interaction between key stakeholders for example between senior executives, clients and key stakeholders.The focus is solely about self discovery and learning, by means of interactions, sharing of experiences and knowledge. Thus in turn allows individuals to learn about other teams and roles and achieve helicopter oversight on company functions and valuesFurthering this developing rapport between young leaders was also critical so they are able to build their awareness of their individual strengths and weakness as well as differencesCoaching in this situation is geared towards how young leaders communicated with one another, as well as portrayed themselves. There is also a focus upon how they communication and communication style affected the dynamics of the group, reaffirming the organization values and development within the groups is also essentiallyThese sessions address topics surrounding organizational culture, leadership, interpersonal skills, power and delegation, team management and development, team work and mobiliisation
    January to March (Individual Coaching ) Coaching with an external executive on a bi weekly basis (5 in total)Each coaching session lasts 1.5 hoursThe aim of these aimed at helping young leaders develop skills allowing them to progress to young executives, hence aimed at achieving goals are to be more effective in there respective roles. Key coaching areas to be addressed in each of these sessions are individually orientated.Primarily centered around building relationships, effective communicating and management responsibilities. At this stage it primarily skills orientated coaching conversations (Sessions) last between an hour and hour and a half and can be conducted through face to face meetings, online conversations and through telephone conversations.Dylan’s performance has been analyzed with specific points and skills to be addressed
    March – April(Group Learning and Sharing) Self learning presentations whereby individual share their key learningsShare key skills they obtained and how it has transformed their job functionality and performance.Providing recognition and praise for program completion

    (Adapted from Morin (2010), Moen and Federici (2012))

    Individual Coaching Session

    Dylan’s individual coaching session is conducted through the use of an external coach. A series of four individual coaching sessions are used each addressing a customized and specific area of concern as notice by his managers.

      Individual Coaching Program
    Session 1 Initially: Information gathering and objective settings Conducted in a Face to Face mannerDuring the Alliance stage is about the resistance and identification of coaches’ presence (Natale and Diamante, 2005)Dylan would understand the reason for the coaches presenceCoach should mention that coaching is only a developmental tool and not a ploy to obtain information Coaching should remain under confidentiality, the opens the road map to begin the session as well as removes resistance thus the formation of the coaching relationship.Coach should prepare preparation sheets, outlining progress to date, specific challenges faced goals for the coaching session (Grant, 2013)Following the general structure of Emerging/ Re-Cap, Establishment of Goals, Identifying Issues, Exploring Options and Taking Action.Session Focus : Time managementFacilitation of the Grow Model in order to establish goals G: Determining the goals of the session Types of questions What do you want to achieve in this session What are your areas of concern What would you like to focus on R: Determining the current situationTell me about your current project Do you ever feel time constrained and pressured Have you taken any step to achieving this goal O: Determine the current obstacles and optionsObstacles 1. What are the obstacles for themselves2. Caused by others3. Lack of skills, knowledge and experience to make intuitive decisions 4. Caused by organizational culture and atmosphere OptionsWho can help youWhere can l obtain additional knowledgeHow can the obstacles in front of me be minimizedW: What step are implemented to achieving the goal What steps are you going to take ?How would you achieve this ?It is important to list action steps in developing an action plan that can be reviewed in a later session as well as imperative that Dylan is confident and committed to the plan in moving forwards and dealing with the time management issue at hand. Actions plans need to delineate specific action steps to be conducted before the next meeting. It important to note here the role of the coach to provide a confidential personal reflective space, asking a series of challenging questions to designed to promote think for issues from a different perspective thus leading to action plans (Grant, 2013). The GROW model conversation is not linear, with conversations being sporadic due to the line of questioning or responses obtained, therefore coaches must be fluid and adaptive to navigate Dylan through the coaching conversation to obtain and achieve goals *** Session latter will implement the same structure of conversation using the GROW conversation model with a addition of a recap and recall at the start .
    Session 2 Presentation Skills
    Session 4 Career Coaching
    Session 5 Team Management
    Wrap up Conduct debrief whereby the coach, Dylan, manager and mentor are assembled to review the progress of the program, reiteration and realignment of the key coaching themes to organizational and functional objectives. As well as the provision of ongoing support and openness in order to maintain long term behavioral change and long term learning and growth henceforth aiding organizational performance. Acting as a retaining and motivation strategy to keep talent with a capacity to perform individual, part of a team, as well a preparation for internal advancement. (Grant,2013)

    Recommendations to the board

    1. Time Management
    2. Presentation Skills
    3. Career Coaching
    4. Team Management and Motivation
    5. The perspectives toward coaching has changed in recent years, with highest performing organizations implementing some form of coaching. With coaching involving the uses of cognitive and behavioral techniques to achieve mutually defined goals and objectives hence improving professional performance, wellbeing and effectiveness of the organization (Grant, Curtayne and Burton,2009). Studies have in turn showed mixed results in coaching, with coaching aiding in the development of constructive leadership programs therefore improved business performance (Grant et al,2009).

      Workplace stress is inherent within workplaces today, hence and impetus is place upon performance and wellbeing. Coaching is seen to reduce stress by Gyllensten and Palmer (2005) experiment, this is furthered by Bowles and Picano (2006) whom noted that coaching improved quality of life as well as growth in leadership and competency as well as achievement of self set goals. Grant further accentuates the ability of life coaching in a non work context can reduce stress, anxiety enhance hope, wellbeing and resilience and the facilitation of goal attainment leading to positive individual change (Grant et al, 2009)

      Although there are significant cost and resources exhausted in the facilitation of the coaching practices. The long term benefits outweigh the short term costs associated with the developmental activity. It is recommended that during Dylan’s coaching sessions that there is a formation of ;

      Overall through the progress and achievement of the 3 facets a noted above we should see, a greater sense of personal confidence, jobs satisfaction and wellbeing in dealing with everyday workplace stressors.

      1. A supportive relationship which there is confidentiality to discuss personal and professional matters to aid in stress relied
      2. Developing personally valued and self- concordant goals, so Dylan feels a purposeful drive to achieving them aiding the process of enhancing wellbeing and self efficacy
      3. Creating a support network to congratulate goal achievement as well as support to help with dealing with setbacks, build resilience and build self regulation.
      4. Conclusion

        Workforce turbulence and increasing levels of competitions, lead organisations to implement coaching programs to improve skills to aid organisational performance, serve as a method of motivation and encouragement. Coaching programs although constitute many different types and methods of delivery, both simple conversations and extensive one one coaching sessions, facilitated through the simplistic GROW model, leads to successful goal attainment as well as raise overall self awareness. It is important to note the formation of a coaching partnership on the basis of trust, to allow the facilitation of change as required, to prevent derailment or to realign with organisational goals and objectives. It is important to note the importance of self congregated goals in achieving higher levels of commitment, as well as reflect personal values are more satisfying when achieved (Grant et al, 2009). Untimely coaching leads to improved performance, with a firm belief in improved capabilities to execute individual roles through the development of management skills and interpersonal skills. It is important for Oxycorp to recognize that not only the design of the coaching program, but also the readiness of the individual and the situational readiness of the organization.

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