World Cup Coaching at Work

Heather Brierley Staunton discussed coaching before the Rugby World Cup Final.

Many of you will have been watching the Rugby World Cup. Some of you will have been avidly watching every match. Others (like me!) will have just dipped in and out. I was certainly sucked into the England versus New Zealand semi-final at the weekend. And what a match it was! And it was something my mum said to me afterwards that got me thinking about my upcoming coaching session at DSC’s Management Conference: ‘Eddie Jones is a great coach. He has instilled belief in his team.’

Belief is key to performance

In fact, I would say it is often half the battle. Belief of the manager that their staff can deliver. Self-belief of the individual that they can do the task ahead of them. Coaching is a great tool that you as managers can use to help your staff develop that self-belief.

Questioning is key to coaching

By asking the right questions, you can help staff recognise what they are already doing well and how they can be even better.

By asking them the right questions you can allow staff to understand any self-doubt, barriers or challenges they face in relation to the work they are doing. They can then work towards identifying how to overcome that self-doubt, break down those barriers or approach those challenges so they can deliver their objectives. So often we don’t even know they exist until we are asked about them and have the opportunity to explore them. We know something doesn’t feel quite right, we are questioning ourselves or we are procrastinating about doing a task. But until we are asked and given the time and space to explore it, we don’t know what’s really getting in the way and or what to do about it. You can give them that opportunity.

By asking your staff questions, they recognise that you have the belief in them that they have the right answers and so this in turn builds their belief in themselves.

Building belief and confidence, and consequently improving performance, is just one benefit of coaching. And it’s a pretty big one! But coaching also has more benefits for your staff, you as their manager and the organisation. Improved relationships, less stress, less interruptions for the manager, more creativity are just a few examples and the list goes on.

Whatever the outcome of the final, you can’t deny that the English team has performed well and I have no doubt that coaching has been an absolute key part of that performance.

You may not be coaching or managing a world class sports team, but if you want to develop high performers then coaching will certainly help you do that.