Coaching and Counseling Employees
Employee coaching represents a form of training and development for employees focused on increasing and improving their competences in the context of necessary levels of productivity and job performance standards. It applies when the employer identifies needs for new or higher competences that employees lack currently, implying the need for remedial instructions andrequirements to fill the gap or deficiency through coaching. While coaching focuses on building the knowledge and skill base of employees as a long-term strategy to promote their development, counseling focuses on corrective action targeting particular aspects of performance that the employer has identified as needing improvement or rectification. Counseling largely focuses on the behavior, welfare, and attitude elements of performance, aiming to assist employees to view their work from a different perspective and encourage changes in behavior and relationships in the workplace. Despite these differences, both coaching and counseling involve direct interaction with employees with the purpose of improving their contributions (productivity) and motivation in the workplace (Werner & DeSimone, 2011).
I believe that coaching is more effective than counseling because while coaching applies in the context of identified objectives, and is in this way an optimistic, proactive, and visionary strategy, counseling starts with an issue or problem, and is thus a reactive and passive strategy (Wright State University Article, n.d.).
In a workplace where I worked previously, the organization applied a long-term action plan in coaching. Managers and supervisors interacted closely and constantly with employees in their tasks to identify their strengths and weaknesses and assisted employees, individually and as a team, to develop specific competences that they identified as necessary in their tasks. I felt that this managerial approach yielded high levels of employee motivation and more efficient fulfillment of goals as employees developed competences that met the expected standards of their tasks.
Werner, J., & DeSimone, R. (2011). Human Resource Development. Stamford: Cengage Learning
Wright State University (n.d.). Coaching: Increasing Employees’ Competence. Retrieved from: http://www.wright.edu/~scott.williams/LeaderLetter/coach.htm