Improve Employee Performance With Constant Coaching

How can you coach vs. teach during difficult conversations?


Cameron Sparks, senior director of training and leader development at Booster Enterprises, discusses his passion for supporting employee development through constant feedback and coaching. In this video, Cameron shares the difference between being a "teacher" and being a "coach."

With a coaching mindset, he explains, leaders build trust and stimulate employee growth for long-term team benefits. Cameron acknowledges that coaching takes time, intention and energy. While it may not always be easy, coaching is still the best way to develop young leaders and improve organizational performance.

Discover whether your leadership training and development style is as a teacher or coach, why you should work alongside members of your team, and how you can help others grow while providing relevant feedback regarding their performance.

For us in a service-based organization, for our young team members to constantly be getting feedback on performance, is huge. I'm naturally a coach. I love coaching, I love studying coaches. So for our program directors, our account managers to coach well and to be boots on the ground and to be able to give that constant feedback, not just a once a year performance evaluation, but constant feedback, is huge for us as an organization, when it comes to leadership and development.

The difference between coaching and teaching is, teaching is tell you something and you better go do it or learn it. Coaching is, "Hey, let me come alongside you, help show you how to do it, then empower you to do it. Then I'm going to give you feedback throughout the process." That was one thing for me in school that teachers, they'd give you a grade but there's not a lot of feedback on how to better learn. But for coaching, for someone to come alongside me to sometimes show me how to do something, empower me to do it, and then continually give me feedback, is huge. So that's one thing that we really enforce in our organization, is the constant coaching and development and feedback.

I think leaders can tend to get so frustrated that they might stuff and then might just, "All right, I'm going to just not deal with this person, because it's easier to walk away and not deal with this person, than to confront the brutal facts that they're not necessarily doing their job the way that they need to be doing it and having that coach mentality." They might have that teacher mentality, walk away, never say anything and ultimately that person would probably quit. They'll be hiring a new person which they might like, but it's probably back to square one again if they're not coaching and they're just teaching.

The benefits for us when it comes to coaching and constant feedback is our team members grow at a rapid pace. We're trying to grow as an organization and we will only grow as fast as our leaders grow. So for our managers to continually coach and continually give feedback, we've seen some really young team members grow really fast, which means more opportunity for them quicker and that's been really huge for us.


Cameron Sparks

Cameron Sparks is the senior director of training and leader development at Booster Enterprises, where he has been a team member since 2008. Before moving into the director of training role, he previously served as an experience leade...

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