5 Stages to Successful Performance Coaching

Great leaders know that they cannot be successful without a strong team.  Success is determined by how effectively we handle their performance.   By following these 5 stages to successful performance coaching, you can determine what stage your team is currently in.  Furthermore, now you know how to move them to new heights.   Gallup research gives us insight on how to proceed.


Gallup wanted to find strong workplaces in order to determine what leaders would need to know in order to attract and retain the most productive employees.  In their research they discovered it came down to five stages to successful performance coaching.  In those steps, certain needs must be met in order for employees to be ready to move to the next stage.

Stage 1 – The Basics

Every person on your team when they were hired, needed to know what they would get from taking the job.  If you think back, you will remember there were things that you needed to know.  Initially the needs are simple, they need to know the hours they work, what is the pay rate, how long will the commute be, and what equipment will they have to enable them to do their job?   Expectations need to be clear and equipment to do their job well is provided. Continue reading

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Attitude is Everything

There is an old saying, “attitude is contagious is yours worth catching?”  Attitude is everything when dealing with people.  Having the right attitude is what is going to get you through the times when things don’t go as you hope they will.  People are challenging and we never know what they will do next.

People Challenges

I know we wish that people came with manuals because it would make it easier to understand them.  So when leading people, attitude is everything.  You need to really like people, desire to make a difference in their lives and have patience with them during difficult times.  Everyone is going through something.  They may not tell you what it is but their behavior will change because of it.  On top of behavior, people have different personalities.  In a crisis, they will respond out of the norm which will throw you off guard. In those times, we need to be at our best because how we handle it will make all the difference.

Leading in Challenging Times

Attitude is everything when we are faced with people challenges.  We need to keep from taking things personally.  It really isn’t about us, it is about whatever they are facing.  We may be the target at that given moment, however how we handle it is crucial.  I suggest sitting down with them, describe the behavior you are seeing and ask them if you can help.  Sometimes all people really need is someone to listen without fear of retaliation.  If we can truly listen to what they are saying, we may help them to find a solution to their problem. They may not want to tell us what is going on but we can at least let them know we care and that we want to help.  Even if we can’t help, we still may need to focus them on an attitude adjustment. Continue reading

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A Contrast in Customer Service

I’m sure you’ve all heard what happens when we experience bad customer service.  We tell 10 people who then tell 10 people and the process goes on and on.  When we have a great customer service experience, we tend to tell very few people and that is sad!  So I have decided that if I am going to talk about a bad customer service experience, I’m going to share a good experience as well.   So let’s look at a contrast in customer service.

Great Customer Service

Great Customer ServiceOn my day off I needed to run some errands like most people.  One of my errands took me into Boise and as you well know, we can never predict the traffic.  So I started out early, got to the location early only to find out they didn’t open for another hour.  Not exactly how I wanted my day to go but I did have my cell phone.  I figured I could use the time to get caught up on email, FB and LinkedIn.  Just as I was getting my phone out a guy walks over to my car.  I jump out to let him know that I am aware I’m early and I’m okay waiting.  As it turns out he works in another part of the business but is willing to help me.

The right way to do customer service

He asks what I need and I explain why I’m there and in a very happy voice says, “come on, I can help you so you don’t have to wait.”  All I can think is “really?”  I don’t ponder on it long because he’s moving toward the door, giving me directions on what I need to do and is so very nice when doing it.  So I comply with all his requests and throughout the process, he has the best attitude.  We are laughing, talking and he is so helpful.  The kindness he has shown me is something that is rare these days in customer service. Continue reading

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Are you humble?  Do you lead with humility?  According to Merriam and Webster, humility is defined as “freedom from pride or arrogance; the quality or state of not thinking you are better than other people; the quality or state of being humble.

HumilityThink back and picture some of the best leaders you met through the course of your career.  Did they exhibit humility in their leadership?  So often when people are given a position in leadership, they use that new position to place themselves above those that report to them.  They believe that they need to exhibit power, lead with fear to make sure their direct reports know “who’s in charge”.  True leaders do it differently. Continue reading

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Encourage the Heart

Celebrate TeamsDo you appreciate the people who work with you and report to you?  Appreciation is the #1 thing that people want most from their leaders and yet, it seems to be the hardest to achieve when working with people.  It’s free but for some it isn’t easy to focus on visibly appreciating others and the efforts that they put forth toward the success of the team and the organization.

Kouzes and Posner’s 5th Practice of Exemplary Leaders focuses on the ability to recognize AND celebrate the contributions of the team members.  Continue reading

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Inspire a Shared Vision

Kouzes & Posner have outlined “5 Practices of Exemplary Leaders” in their book called Leadership Challenge.  In this article, I want to focus on Inspire a Shared Vision.

Shared VisionWhen you talk to your team do they know the vision for your team and your organization?  Have you helped them to “envision an uplifting and ennobling future”?  People want to know that the time they are investing with their organization is important.  I believe that people choose a career because they feel that they can make a difference and they will strive every day to be exceptional at that career if given the opportunity.  My experience tells me that people do not wake up in the morning and say, Continue reading

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Challenge the Process

I’m sure you’ve heard someone say, “But we’ve always done it this way”.  Maybe you’ve even said it yourself.  I know I’ve heard this so many times when working with leaders and managers within organizations and my response to them is always . . . “so how’s that working for you?”  If do what we have always done, we will get the same results.  Are those the results that we really want to get when trying to move our organizations and people forward?

To move people and organizations forward, to gain a greater portion of the market share or even to set ourselves apart from our competition, we have to be willing to challenge the process.  This is another one of Kouzes & Posner’s 5 Practices of Exemplary Leaders and one that I think is the hardest for organizations to implement.  It requires finding new ways to do old business and that means change.  If we are going apply this concept, we need to be willing to “search out challenging opportunities to change, grow, innovate, and improve”, according to Kouzes and Posner.  Are you willing to look at what you are currently doing and change it if it doesn’t give you the results you are looking to achieve?

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Enable Others to Act

Have you ever been given a task, little direction to complete it and then been chastised for the outcome?  It happens all too often when leaders do not strive to practice exemplary leadership.  In The Leadership Challenge by Kouzes & Posner, they talk about the “5 Practices of Exemplary Leadership”.  Enable Others to Act is one of the 5 practices and it focuses on collaboration and strengthening others through shared power.

Well Rounded Team

Hire the Right People

Successful teams are built on diversity so that they are well-rounded.    If we have hired correctly and stacked our team with a variety of strengths and talents, then we set ourselves up for success.  The next step is the hardest because we have to give up control.  We need to enable others to act utilizing their strengths and talents. Continue reading

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