Coaching Report # 7

Coaching and Organizational Change: -in the Workplace
(Adapted from the book ‘Behavioral Coaching’ by Skiffington and Zeus, 2004. -With permission from the publisher McGraw-Hill Professional -New York).

The 4 New Principles of Organizational Change:

1: All people and systems are dynamic -changing throughout time. -Continually changing external market forces and internal performance requirements mean any organization to survive and thrive must inturn learn how to grow and to engage in ongoing internal change

2. To change any organizational structure or process or result requires a change in people. -Learning means a change in behavior as people change by learning an alternate way of thinking and behaving

3. Behavioral-based coaching is the vehicle for successful, lasting personal and professional behavioral change. -Implementing any organizational change first requires a learning review (coaching assessment) by behavioral change experts (coaches).

4. Successful implementation of the learning review insights can only be achieved by employing a validated, scientific behavioral change program and leaders and executives who want to learn and lead by learning

“Change is at the heart of coaching. It plays a critical role in helping individuals and organizations to create, adapt to, and accept change as a challenge rather than an obstacle. The process, though, can be a difficult one.

The coach’s role as a change agent, either internal or external, in an organization can assume the following forms:
– The internal or external coach who is introducing a coaching program to an organization, that is, working to establish a culture of coaching
– The coach who is working with executives to develop and enhance their leadership skills such as leading change.
– The coach who is working with leaders or managers to adopt a coaching style, for example, a ‘manager as coach’ program.
– The coach who is working with an executive or leader to enhance his or her personal or operational mastery skills within an organization. Working with an individual on business issues such as clarifying values, challenging beliefs, working on goals and strategies allows the executive to employ these skills with staff and colleagues and thereby play his or her role in creating a Learning Organization.

The model of a learning organization.
Within the learning organization there is a focus on developing new ways of thinking and working. A coaching culture is the framework of any learning organization. These organizations are characterized by relationships of trust, collaboration, insightful guidance, and a focus on assisting people to maximize their potential. Learning organizations differ from others in that they have shifted from a focus on performance to a emphasis on sustainable growth. People are given the opportunity to enhance and strengthen the concept of ongoing learning and development by a creating a culture where coaching thrives.

Regardless of which enterprise the coach is engaged in, he or she requires a solid knowledge of the organization. The coach has to be aware of its climate and culture, the current challenges it faces, its current learning and development programs and its people management programs and philosophy. Although we emphasize the importance and usefulness of conducting a Coaching Needs Analysis (see chapter 4), it alone is not sufficient for the coach to embark upon working in an organization. In the same way, neither process knowledge or proven ability to work with personal mastery skills will equip the coach to work effectively in an organization.

The coach has to be familiar with various models of organizational change and the model or framework, either explicit or implicit, within which the particular organization operates. If a coach chooses to work within an organizational environment, it is recommended that he or she adopt a systemic approach, that is, one that recognizes, acknowledges and can work with both internal and external factors that impact on the organization and its individuals. The coach’s role may be to focus on human processes in the organization, on organizational design, developing and enhancing job competencies, or on coaching individuals through technology change programs.

If the coaching program is a pilot or minimum intervention, the coach has to have access to key stakeholders in other other parts of the organization and the external world.

Whatever the brief, the coach should bear in mind that an organization is a living organism. It is a living system with its own unique values, beliefs and processes.

Any coaching program has to be tailored to the individual organization’s unique systems needs. Generic solutions are no longer feasible or acceptable in the marketplace. In our coaching clinics for managers as coach, we conduct seminars and workshops to establish the specific coaching needs of the organization as a whole. One cannot approach an organization with the intention of ‘imposing’ a model or solution.”

The key to success of any organizational coaching initiative is the selection of the appropriate validated change models and best practices to fit the organization’s specific needs. Dr Skiffington’s industry-proven, fast-tracked, 4 Day Certified Master Coach Course (world’s top-rated organizational coaching course in N.Y., London, Sydney etc. -ICAA Survey 2004) meets the critical needs for coaches to be trained and mentored in the use of a range of validated, reliable coaching models, tools and techniques.

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