The Importance of Coaching in Change Management

LaMarsh Global

from LaMarsh Global – Global

Change Management calls for creating buy-in to change and how to achieve it successfully.  Telling is of limited value in this scenario.  While trainers or advisors often say what they think is the best course of action, coaches engage with questions so their clients will decide what to do or how to do it. Coaching does not give people the answers; instead, it is a process for clients to process the situation and decide what to do for themselves.

The opposite of coaching is giving people the answers to the problems or situations they are facing. When someone receives an answer (or is told what to do), three outcomes are likely:

  1. They don’t do what their told because it is not their solution (this is the most likely outcome).
  2. They do what they’re told and it doesn’t work.
  3. They do what they’re told and it works, and this creates a dependency on the coach.

“These outcomes are what happens with leaders all the time,” describes Liska. “They are not developing people that are capable until they come up with their own answers.”

Coaching does not give the solutions or plans. Instead, it is a process to walk people through to figure out the solution. For change practitioners, the ability to coach both leaders and people impacted by change is an opportunity for those individuals to decide for themselves what to do.

For organizations, coaching develops employees that can consider and own the course of action based on what they think is the best solution.  This, in turn, means they own the course of action and are more likely to follow through – which is essential when implementing change.

Coach training will help leaders and people impacted by change to “say what they do want and make sure that the focus is proactive,” says Liska. “That’s the game-changer.”


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