Three Key Questions for Effective Coaching

The Coaching Mantra

Coaching should be simple and intuitive. In today’s busy business world, managers aren’t going to implement a complicated coaching process that requires hours to prepare and execute.

A simple approach to coaching has managers asking themselves three questions:

1. Does the employee know what you expect?

2. Does the employee have the skills and knowledge to do what you expect?

3. Is the employee motivated to do what you expect?

This approach to coaching is called the coaching mantra, and it’s illustrated in the coaching mantra model.

Application of the model is simple—the manager observes an employee completing a vital task, and if the performance doesn’t meet expectations, the manager simply asks himself or herself these three questions. Whenever the answer is “no,” the manager works with the employee until the answer becomes “yes.”

For example, if a manager observes an employee providing customer service that doesn’t meet expectations, the manager would then use the coaching mantra to uncover the underlying reason why the employee is not meeting the expectations.

In this context, the coaching mantra would look like this:

1. Does the employee know what the manager expects?

Graphic of the Coaching Mantra The employee’s notion of “good customer service” doesn’t align with the manager’s expectations. From here, the manager can correct the problem by maintaining transparent communication until their understanding aligns.

2. Does the employee have the skills and knowledge to do what the manager expects?

The employee doesn’t have the skills and knowledge to deliver good customer service. The employee may know what the manager expects in terms of customer service but is unable to deliver it because he or she lacks the skills and knowledge needed. In this situation, the manager would provide training on how to deliver good customer service.

3. Is the employee motivated to do what the manager expects?

The employee isn’t motivated to provide the level of customer service the manager expects. The employee knows what the manager expects and has the skills and knowledge to meet the expectation but simply lacks the motivation to do it. In this case, the manager would use persuasion and encouragement to convince the employee of the importance of providing good customer service. Some managers feel that it’s not their place to persuade an employee to meet an expectation, but that attitude doesn’t reflect a coaching and development mindset. Nor is it helpful for the business in the long run. Showing the positive impact of changing an employee’s behavior is much more influential than simply mandating it without correlating results.

The payoff of good coaching is invaluable. In addition to “correcting the ship,” it shows your employees that you care. You care about the growth and development of your business—and employees—enough to spend time developing them to a point where they can eventually lead by example and excel in the roles in which you trusted them.

Contact us to learn how Romar can help you with a simple and effective coaching technique—the coaching mantra.

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