Coaching programmes can be a powerful driver for business performance. However, for remote businesses, coaching can be tricky to set up.
In this piece, we'll explore how to harness the power of coaching while working remotely. To do this, we'll:
- break down the benefits of coaching in the workplace;
- explain how you can encourage internal coaching;
- show you how to get external coaches up to speed quickly.
Why your business needs coaches
According to Chief Learning Officer Magazine1, coaching is the skill that front-line managers most want. And small wonder.
Coaching, the process of equipping people with the tools, skills, and knowledge to reach their full potential, is a performance powerhouse.
More than 70% of people who receive coaching report improved work performance, more effective communication skills, and better workplace relationships2.
In the uncertain, challenging environment created by the global pandemic, coaches have never been more necessary to keep employees motivated, engaged, and supported.
"Coaching is an attitude, not just an activity"
However, with belts tightening during the current financial crisis, external coaching may be beyond the means of many small and mid-market companies. Luckily, internal coaching programmes can be highly effective, without the hefty price tag.
Internal coaches are employees – managers, business leaders or subject matter experts - who offer coaching and mentoring to their co-workers.
They provide the same motivation, inspiration, and guidance as external coaches – but with the added advantage of having a deep understanding of your company culture and priorities.
How to build a remote coaching programme
Of course, all of this becomes trickier in a remote workplace. Gone are the opportunities for casual peer-to-peer or manager-employee conversations over the water cooler.
For new hires, it’s hard to know where to go to find internal experts. Even if you decide to bring someone in, external coaches may find it hard to understand or connect with the company or its values without in-person meetings.
However, with the right tools and structures in place, it can be easy to build a high-performing coaching programme in a remote company.
At Learn Amp, we use these three tips for our coaching programme.
Explicitly acknowledge the role of internal coaches
Decentralise your internal coaching programme
"By rethinking the concept of coaching you can make sure that your remote employees get the guidance and inspiration they need, when they need it the most"
Onboard external coaches with your learning platform
Coaching is key to supporting and motivating employees during this tough time, even when you’re working remotely.
By rethinking the concept of coaching, setting up the right tools and processes, and encouraging coaching as an attitude at a company-wide level, you can make sure that your remote employees get the guidance and inspiration they need, when they need it the most.
To sum up
- To create true learning organisations, we need to rethink the role of coach. Internal coaching programs should be implemented - Managers should be coaches, but it can also be a function of internal experts.
- Employees need to know who to ask about particular skillsets, especially when it’s not obvious (e.g. the marketing manager is also a public speaking expert, or the programmer who knows everything about UX copywriting…)
- Learning platform needs to support this process, by setting up SMEs as knowledge curators, screening user-created content, and making it easy to find internal experts.
- External coaches can supplement this by adding an outsider’s perspective and bringing new knowledge into the organisation.
- Again, the learning platform can facilitate external coaching programs by making it easier to onboard and orientate newly engaged coaches into the company’s priorities and challenges with e.g. corporate culture Learnlists.
Find out Learn Amp can help you to build a coaching programme for your organisation by requesting a demo below