In his recent visit to India, Aviad Goz, Chief Visionary Officer, N.E.W.S Coaching & Training, shares his take on organizational coaching, its challenges and how one can overcome them.
Having trained coaches across 23 countries, Aviad Goz explains that the concept of coaching is viewed differently in different countries. While in some countries, coaching is used to fix problems and therefore, often viewed as something negative; there are other countries, like the US or the UK, where over the years coaching has become a way to invest in the best people and retain them. Therefore, the focus is to use coaching as a tool for retention of high talent and for developing future leaders. In the context of the Indian market, coaching has a mixed positioning. While there are still many companies where coaching in viewed as something used to fix a problem, there are many others where coaching is also considered a positive investment towards talent development. However a challenge in India stems from its existing culture where taking advice from gurus and elders is a way of life. Thus, since coaching is happening anyways, the question that often arises is why the need to bring in a professional coach and pay them for something that is anyways happening so naturally. And even in cases where the need for coaching intervention is rightly acknowledged, it does have its share of challenges during the process.
Challenges in a coaching intervention
Absence of differentiation between life and organizational coaching
Very often, the absence of any demarcation between life coaching and organizational coaching creates an ethical conflict in the coaching process. This can create conflicts the objectives of life coaching and organizational coaching is vastly differently, and can even be contradictory in some cases. Aviad shares, “If I am not trained in organizational coaching, I would start talking about life etc. But the focus must be the client which is the company in this case and thus the focus should be on working towards achieving the organization’s goal as a result of the coaching process.”
No alignment between coaching and organizational agenda
Most often coaching is viewed as a standalone process which is not aligned to the organization’s larger goal. The coach therefore faces the challenges in weaving the coaching structure into the organizational fabric.
No clear measure and roadmap
Most coaching interventions lack a constructive roadmap to measure the progress of the coaching intervention. The absence of a continuous status report on the intervention can leave both the management and the coachee disinterested sooner than later.
Mismatch in individual and organizational outcome
In the absence of a clear roadmap and transparent messaging, the coaching process is unable to meet its objective as there is no alignment between the outcomes that the individual expects from the coaching exercise, to what the organization is trying to achieve.
Lack of qualified organizational coaches
Most coaches are retired people who are self proclaimed coaches as a result of their sheer experience in the industry. But there is a lot more to organizational coaching than just industry experience. Lack of professionally qualified coaches often becomes a major challenge in meeting the objective of such interventions.
N.E.W.S - The method
While different coaches have adopted their own methods to this madness, Aviad’s approach is defined in the acronym N.E.W.S. which tries to crease out most of these inherent challenges. The success of organizational coaching depends on the process involved. In the changing and competitive world, a compass is needed to navigate successfully. N.E.W.S is a model that helps individuals, teams and organizations to make fast decisions and create almost immediate solutions. Aviad shares the N.E.W.S model which ensures effective organizational coaching intervention.
N.E.W.S is a systemic self-navigation process that is results oriented and designed to assist managers and executives in navigating through difficult situations, to coach them in achieving their unique potential for greatness and fulfillment within the organization context. This global, reproducible, objective, and transparent process assists them in alignment, motivation and focus.
The acronym N.E.W.S stands for north, east, west and south. North depicts direction, strategy and vision as the chosen area of coaching; East refers to improving motivation and verifying coherence with their own system of values; West identifies with planning and execution of effective tactics whilst improving skills and the usage of resources; and South aligns to detecting and overcoming blockages and limiting beliefs, that prevent people from achieving their goals.
Amidst challenges, Aviad points out the top five ‘must dos’ that can help a coach result in an effective coaching intervention. Clearly, setting clear goals with the coachee; ensuring that the goals are integrated with the goals that the organization needs to achieve; a clear roadmap; commitment from the coachee to the coaching process, and reaching a point where the coach can be made redundant, can go a long way. These critical points can help organizations use coaching to empower its people to be the best at what they do and optimize their potential in order to survive in a competitive market. Aviad reiterates in his closing remarks, “Companies must either, bring in coaches to coach people, or train internal coaches by investing on training existing managers to become coaches and create an internal culture of coaching in the organization. Eventually this will make one very competitive and that is the business case for coaching.”