Humans have always needed to be adaptable. Environments are ever changing and as we all have a vested interest in our own survival, we need to find ways to adapt. This can happen over thousands of years or very quickly as we’ve seen over the last few weeks.
But the good news is we don’t go through this process on our own. We evolved into groups and societies for a reason – to share our skills and pass on knowledge (“don’t eat that, it’s poisonous!). You could argue that the more severe and abrupt the change, the more providing support to adapt our habits and develop our skills becomes crucial.
You could also argue that the more remote people are from the groups they’re part of, the harder it can be to find ways to support them. With all that in mind, what does this mean for coaching in the new normal?
For me it means doubling down on FFQ. Frequency. Focus. Questions.
Frequency – in times of uncertainty, it’s crucial that supporting learning through coaching becomes a weekly habit across your team. Add coaching to your daily do-to list and take time for did-I-do reflection to encourage you to look for and take coaching opportunities
Focus – take time to agree the MOST important habits and skills individuals need to develop to effectively adapt their ways of working AND to be ready for what might happen in future
Questions – it’s vital to motivation and being able to apply learning in a range of context in future for people to feel they have played a key role in working out what they need to do to improve. It feels like their plan not your plan. Using questions is the best way to do this.
Human beings don’t like uncertainty and hopefully you can see how coaching can help people feel supported and valued as we wait to see how things pan out. But not only that. Using coaching effectively AS ENVIRONMENTS CHANGE allows you to create a habit that make adaptability a skill your people ALWAYS work on – it’s part of their day job! Now that’s a new normal I like the sound of.
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