How Smart Leaders Protect Their Time

Smart leaders demonstrate to their team members that as leaders they value their coaching time with their team by protecting their coaching sessions. Smart leaders do this by conducting their coaching conversations in a place where their team members feel they can share (without judgment) and learn (free of evaluation). When leaders do this successfully, their team members perform better and engage in more productive and profitable behaviors.

To protect your coaching time, consider embracing some of the following basic guidelines when coaching your team members:

1.  Keep the coaching to the two of you

Don’t add others to the room. This way your team members feel they can admit what they don’t know without the concern of being judged by others.  This creates an ideal environment to learn.

2.  Complete one item at a time

Ensure you don’t rush your coaching or leave items hanging. Manage your time in such a way that you both can leave the coaching session feeling it is complete.

3.  Have the necessary resources handy

Plan ahead so you have the materials you will need in the coaching room with you. This means you bringing the materials you anticipate will be required and your team members bringing the materials they might refer to during the coaching session.

4.  Arrange for no interruptions

Choose a room to meet where you won’t be disturbed. Also let others know not to interrupt you unless there is an emergency.

5.  Require note taking

Don’t make the mistake many leaders do of allowing team members to come to coaching sessions with nothing. Make a pen and paper (or other note-taking devices) your team members’ ticket to coaching. Don’t start coaching until they have these. Help your team members develop effective note-taking habits so they are more actively involved in their coaching.

6.  End with commitment and a scheduled follow-up

Be sure to finish your coaching sessions with a commitment from your team members of what they are going to do differently next time they are in a similar sales situation … and a specific time when the two of you will follow-up on how their new approach is working.

Demonstrate that you value your coaching with your team members by protecting your coaching time with them. It will help your team members perform better and engage in more productive and profitable behaviors.