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Getting Best Out Of Corporate Employees

Build the counselling & coaching competency of your managers to help create your future leaders!

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This article looks at the needs of the corporate sector employees keeping in view the pivotal role counselling skills and certain attitudes and personal qualities play in the success of any business.

Most organisations have managers and supervisors who are “too busy” to coach their direct supervisees.  There are millions of employees who have not received any concrete feedback in over a year.  Organisations are struggling in retaining its top performers.  Performance issues going unaddressed and the issues have gone viral.  The best leaders, managers and supervisors are those who develop other people. Managers with strong people skills are vital to ensuring that your business is retaining and effectively wielding your top performers, building and developing the strengths of your emerging power players, as well as identifying the team members who are not operating as the best fit for your organization. Your managers’ effective people skills can help guide the career paths of high potential candidates and create alternative paths for individuals who are not a company fit. These are mission-critical responsibilities for your managers and supervisors.  Arming them with the tools, techniques and best practices for counselling are essential to any company’s success.

Human resource is the most critical resource for any organisation, which is responsible for what all happens in there-success or failure, profits or loss, whether yours is an attractive or repulsive organisation, whether people want to stay or leave your organisation. Human Resource is the lynch-pin where most in any organisation hangs on.  Having the organisational ability to get best out of this resource is critical.  You may have best facilities, best incentives, you spent millions in training etc, but still people leave your organisation.  

It’s not a mystery that employee engagement continues to sink. The Gallup organization reminds us every couple of years that nearly 70 percent of employees are actively disengaged. It’s also not a mystery that generational differences, and the shift of leadership, continues to elicit headlines—revealing to all of us in the corporate world that the only thing we can truly count on is change.

But these aren’t the only numbers that should make us think. Research is consistently giving us insights into the realities of today’s working world. And because our heads are buried in research each day, we thought it would be fun and enlightening to give you some of the statistics we thought were most provocative and interesting.

A recent study by shows that a whopping 58 percent of managers said they didn’t receive any management training. Digest that for a second. Most managers in the workforce were promoted because they were good at what they did, and not necessarily good at making the people around them better. This statistic obviously unveils a harsh reality. We have a bunch of leaders who aren’t trained on how to lead.

Another study on why employees leave revealed that 89 percent of bosses believe employees quit because they want more money. As much as any boss would love this statistic to be true (because it basically pardons any manager from wrong-doing) it’s simply not true. The fact is only 12 percent of employees leave an organization for more money.

A Harvard Business Review survey reveals 58 percent or people say they trust strangers more than their own boss. This is truly shocking. We live in a world where cultural trust is at an all-time low, but also, in certain areas, at ground-breaking.  Never would we ask a stranger to drive our kids around town until Uber arrived. However, distrust of leadership should be worrisome to all of us who have jobs.

Global studies reveal that 79 percent of people who quit their jobs cite ‘lack of appreciation’ as their reason for leaving. The power and impact of employee appreciation, this isn’t a shocker for many of the companies.  People don’t leave companies. They leave bosses.

Recognition is the number one thing employees say their manager could give them to inspire them to produce great work. Global studies prove that when it comes to inspiring people to be their best at work, nothing else comes close—not even higher pay, promotion, autonomy or training.

While all these statistics are fascinating to think about, just pondering their meaning won’t achieve much. As leaders, it’s our responsibility to act, look for ways to promote change, and, if we must, build practices, policies, and procedures that inspire change. That is our job. We’re responsible to inspire the best in people.

The myth about counselling is that it is for people with problem.  Counselling, as a skill set, plays important and valuable roles in life in general, but equally so in business. Your managers and supervisors need to be equipped to look both at “what has happened so far” as well as “what we want to happen next”, and confidently and clearly guide others along those paths to clarity and success. Managers and supervisors must be trained on the best communication practice skills and techniques for having difficult conversations early and with ease, to give useful and tangible feedback and create a meaningful action plan that facilitates correction and supports the team member’s development – all while still meaningfully developing rapport with the employee. 

This isn’t always an easy task, because every team member is so different and brings a different set of issues and unique circumstances to the table. A good leader and manager must have the skills to know how to read others and adjust the enabling style to be able to reach any individual. Ensuring your manager and supervisors are trained in the counselling skills and communication techniques that will increase the understanding and impact of information for all team members will make the task much easier and successful for everyone.  

Following are a few important areas where managers and supervisors must enhance their effectiveness:

  • Develop a sound protocol for conducting a meaningful enabling session
  • Understand how to deliver feedback that both praises and corrects team members while developing a positive atmosphere going forward.
  • Learn how to confidently have difficult conversations early and develop an effective and mutually agreeable action plan.
  • “Read” others and know how to adjust their style to reach those they manage and supervise.
  • Develop strategies and skills to effectively address and resolve conflicts leading to the highest quality outcomes.
  • Learn proven counselling skills and communication techniques that increase the impact and understanding of information amongst all team members.
  • Understand how to turn the performance review session into a productive coaching session and strategically guide all team members to improved performance.
  • Clearly understand the distinction between “coaching” and “counselling” and when they are appropriate.

Build the counselling & coaching competency of your managers to help create your future leaders!

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

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Anupam Srivastava

The author is Director, Insight Life Counseling Services

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