Performance Coaching Process
What can you expect? The performance coaching process is a two-phased, eight-step process. As shown in figure 3, the pre-coaching phase consi sts of four steps: (1) identify need and agree on intervention, (2) select external consultant, (3) administer self-assessment, and (4) administer 360-degree assessments. Steps one and two of this phase are initially internally facilitated; the balance of the pre-coaching phase is externally facilitated by a consultant coach.
The coaching phase also consists of four steps: (1) review information and have the "emperor has no clothes" discussion, (2) develop action items, (3) obtain results and benefits, and (4) discuss/feedback and observe/mirror based on the results and benefits, and ensure the gaps and additional opportunities turn into action items. The consultant coach and you, the executive, jointly facilitate this phase.
One of the self-assessment tools often utilized in the pre-coaching phase is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). MBTI is a framework that yields four separate scores that describe both the nature and relative strength of an individual's preferences for (1) how they go about deriving energy (extroversion/introversion), (2) focusing attention (sensing/intuition), (3) making decisions (thinking/feeling), and (4) orienting to the outside world (judging/perceiving). Based on the combination and direction of the scores, an individual is assigned a "type."
Another self-assessment tool that may be utilized is the Kirton Adaptation Inventory (KAI). KAI is an assessment tool that describes the problem-solving style preference of an individual. High scorers (innovators) tend to take risks and break rules in generating ideas and trying new solutions. Low scorers (adapters) prefer to use proven, reliable methods to solve problems.
A less formal assessment tool includes asking executives to write a few sentences describing how they see their own leadership style, and also how they think other people see their leadership style. The differences or gaps between these two evaluations can be used to establish priorities and develop action plans.
To solicit 360-degree input, subordinates often complete similar assessments. One method can you use to do this is Burke and Coruzzi's empower model, which consists of four characteristics: development, contribution, integration, and satisfaction.
Internal and External Roles
As mentioned above and shown in figure 4, there are "internal" and "external" roles in the performance coaching process. Those "internal" to your company should identify the need, select an external consultant, follow-up results versus goals, hold the executive accountable for the coaching plan and progress, and address multiple executives' needs. While human resources personnel typically fill these internal roles, the board of directors often plays a role, particularly in identifying the need, following up results versus goals, and holding the executive accountable for the coaching plan and progress. Or, you can initiate this process yourself.
Your external consultant's role as the coach starts in the pre-coaching phase with selecting and administering assessment tools, and includes all four coaching steps. You can expect your coach to be an objective, talking partner who can deliver tough messages and maintain confidentiality.
Your coach may use "personality-type" assessment tools; however, the focus of the coaching needs to be on the types of behaviors the executive tends to use, particularly under stress. Types of behaviors are linked to motivation, and motivation is a combination of the need for achievement, affiliation, and power. Simply stated, achievement is the need to do things well, affiliation is the need to maintain interpersonal relationships, and power is need to justify oneself by exercising influence or making impact on others. An assessment tool focused on motivation is the Motivating Needs Profiling Systems (MNPS).
MNPS was developed by David McClelland, refined by George West, and is administered by Andersen Consulting. The tool measures the multiple motivational characteristics within achievement, affiliation, and power on a 1 -to-20 scale. These characteristics are then charted
to provide a motivational map for the executive that provides a basis for a leadership development plan and coaching relationship.
It is important to keep in mind that the coach's role is not to attack or seek to change your personality. The coach should stay focused on the impact of the behaviors utilized, and work with you on how to change and use behaviors for better results.
To Be Continued