Thursday, August 28, 2008

Coaching Self-Assessment for Leaders

The questions below relate to the skills and qualities needed for effective coaching. Use this assessment to evaluate your own effectiveness as a coach.

1. Do you seize development opportunities and focus on immediate performance problems for your employees?

2. Do you try to develop a supportive, emotional bond with your employees?

3. Do you observe your employee's behavior?

4. Do you form and test hypotheses about your employee's behavior before acting on them?

5. Do you separate observations from judgments or assumptions?

6. Do you listen for signals that your help is needed?

7. Are you careful to avoid using your own performance as a yardstick to measure others?

8. Do you prepare employees for coaching sessions in advance?

9. Do you use open-ended questions to promote sharing of ideas and information?

10. Do you use closed questions (those that require a “yes” or “no” response) to help focus the discussion?

11. Do you blend inquiry (asking questions) with advocacy (offering opinions and ideas) during discussions with individuals you’re coaching?

12. Do you listen actively when someone is talking with you?

13. Do you paraphrase or use some other method to clarify what is being said in a discussion?

14. Are you able to discern the emotions behind your employees’ words?

15. Do you identify causes of performance problems or look for ways to close skill gaps?

16. Do you work with the employees you are coaching to generate alternative approaches or solutions that you can consider together?

17. Do you work with your employees to reach agreement on desired goals and outcomes?

18. Do you set a positive tone during coaching sessions?

19. Do you demonstrate sincerity in wanting to help your employees?

20. Do you customize your coaching approach depending on the person you are coaching?

21. Do you give specific feedback?

22. Do you give timely feedback?

23. Do you give feedback that focuses on behavior and its consequences (rather than on vague judgments)?

24. Do you give positive as well as negative feedback?

25. Do you always follow up on a coaching discussion to make sure progress is proceeding as planned?

TOTALS

If you answered “yes” to most of these questions, congratulations, you are probably an effective coach.
If you answered “no” to some or many of these questions, you may want to consider how you can further develop your coaching skills. For starters, see:
Six Principles of Leadership Coaching
Four Tips for Coaching Managers
The Manager as Developer: A Critical Coaching Competency
If you answered "no" to most of these questions, then you just might be a PHB. Consider an leadership extreme makeover.

2 comments:

Chris Young said...

Great self-assessment Dan! These are great questions to get leaders thinking about their effectiveness as a coach.

I've featured your post as one of my top five blog picks for the past week which can be found here: http://www.maximizepossibility.com/employee_retention/2008/09/the-rainmaker-f.html

Be well!

Dan McCarthy said...

Chris -
Thanks, it's been a while since I made your list, I thought I was losing it!