A Manager's Handbook For Coaching Conversations
If you have a manager who isn't the best communicator, you can suggest he/she read Jane Murphy's and Khatun Huber's book, What Could Happen If You Do Nothing?
Actually, it's more of a handbook than a book, and it is best read by finding the section most applicable at the moment versus reading it start to finish.
It's filled with mini-dialogues that demonstrate the impact of engaged listening, deliberative questioning, and animating suggestions to facilitate change and action.
For me, the most useful section is the list of a dozen or so questions (for each conversation category below) to ask an employee to:
- Start a conversation with an employee
- Conduct a meaningful follow-up conversation
- Clarify inconsistencies in what you are hearing from an employee
- Build and further a conversation on what's being said to move the conversation ahead
- Wind down a conversation
- Solicit feedback
- What have you learned from the reviews you've had?
- What do you find challenging about reviews?
- Is there anyone whose input you'd like to include whom you'd like me to talk to?
- So how would you grade yourself on that? What's your thinking here? How could you make this a ten?
- Do you want to add any points you want to address in your review?
- How can we talk about this in a way that works toward a solution?
- What has been really working? Where are there gaps? What can you do to get past this roadblock?
- Is there anything more I could do to make this review process more useful to you?