Leading and managing organizational change has become an essential knowledge base and skill set required in both public- and private-sector organizations. Not only must leaders and managers deal with the technical, process, and operational aspects of change, but they must also understand the psychology or human side of change as they engage others in change initiatives. This can be daunting.
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One has seen a significant shift in the role of coaching in the workplace. During this time, coaching could not remain static. It had to evolve to accommodate the many changes and disruptions we have seen in the business world, such as new technologies, the globalization of markets and competition, the rapidly increasing pace of change, and new demands on employees to work faster, smarter and be more productive more efficient and effective. In a more complex workplace, today's leaders must master as never before the dance of leading, engaging others, and delivering results. You can't pick up a business magazine, listen to a podcast, or read a blog that doesn't talk about today's new world of critical leadership challenges:
- How can leaders manage their companies through transformational culture change?
- How can they engage their employees to participate in leading, managing and implementing these changes?
- How can they be more creative and innovative?
- How can they make their companies more competitive in a global marketplace?
- How can social media help leaders grow their business?
- How can they leverage and honor the diversity of today's workforce?
- How can they develop their talent to best address their business needs?
It's obvious that the old model of command and control leadership and rewarding individual performance is not working in this new world. Contemporary leaders must learn to lead more with informal authority and influence. They must understand how to build strong organizational cultures that foster and reward knowledge transfer across the entire organization, promote cross-company team collaboration, cultivate employee engagement, and lead to success. Effective leaders must especially recognize that they achieve results through people, often creating networks that work at multiple levels within the organization even in partnership with external stakeholders and key resources. Leaders must be able to ensure that managers and employees at all levels know their line of sight and play their part to contribute to achieving the strategic goals of the organization. To accomplish this, leaders need to learn for themselves how to coach and be coached, focus on their own development, and contribute to the professional development of other team members. These challenges exist globally, in all industries and sectors.
Coaching is increasingly becoming part of our everyday life and work. Parents, teachers, and front-line service providers, and individuals at all levels within the organization, have to learn how to coach on some level. Frankly, it is a critical and essential skill for everyone to develop. Some people will embrace coaching naturally and realize the impact and difference it can have on every aspect of their life; others will need coaching to become coaches.
Coaching helps to create and support a culture that is accountable, and enables organizations to build thriving organizational communities and realize their goals much faster and with deeper impact. We will also see more innovative tools and processes using social media and technologies that make the coaching experience more engaging and participatory.