Coach's VIEW

Coach's VIEW is a business column authored by executive coaches in COACH A, aimed at providing valuable insights and effective approaches for leveraging coaching to foster organizational and leadership development. The column draws on the latest coaching trends and data, as well as insights from notable global publications on coaching.

Coaching for Organizational Development

Coaching for Organizational Development
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First, let me briefly look back on the history of coaching in Japan.

In the 2000s, many companies started adopting coaching as training.

It was said that there was a lost decade at that time. While searching for a way to break free from that decade, coaching was put into the limelight by companies as a new skill that leaders should possess.

Coaching training was the form in which coaching was introduced in the early days in Japan.

Following on from that, coaching started to be undertaken as one-on-one on a full-fledged basis from around 2008 - a little behind U.S.A. as the birthplace of coaching. The aim of this style of coaching is to let executives and managers enhance their performance.

That was the beginning of coaching for human resource development.

Nowadays, coaching is more than just a method of human resource development; it is drawing attention as a new approach for organizational development.

We have shown the value of coaching for organizational development in various settings.

What is organizational development in the first place?

What Is Found in Highly Productive Teams at Google?

Let's suppose you have gathered 10 people to create an organization.

If there is no connection among those 10 people who are even talented and if they pursue their assigned tasks individually, productivity will not be improved as an organization.

We can easily imagine that the sum of those 10 people will not become more than "10" when the output ability of each person is just "1."

On the other hand, what if there are connections among those 10 people and the 10 of them are able to collaborate one another?

It could be possible that the sum of those 10 people would be "20" or "30."

I visited Google's headquarters in Silicon Valley last October. We discussed over one hour and a half what kind of organization would enhance high productivity.

One senior HR manager told me;

"Google has investigated more than 200 teams from a productivity perspective. Our result shows that the team with the highest productivity is not a group with one or two geniuses; rather, it is the team with the highest number of interactions between team members."

What Is Organizational Development?

In short, organizational development is the creation of valuable connections that are linked to increasing overall productivity among the people there.

Valuable connections are two-way communications in which valuable information and stimuli that mutually enhance productivity go back and forth.

It might be best to imagine something like a neural pathway. Positive information and stimuli are always going back and forth through thick and vibrant neural pathways. The members are connected with one another here.

Nevertheless, it is not so easy to actually create valuable connections. There are many organizations in which members are not connected with one another like such neural pathways.

There are organizations in which there are no connections among members in the first place. There are also those in which information only flows one way even though members are connected. Furthermore, there are also organizations in which information rarely goes back and forth even if there are two-way communications.

This may be due to the influence of the culture of the organization. It may also stem from the influence of leaders who have just recently taken the lead. Moreover, it may be a result of various environmental influences surrounding the organization.

Why Does Coaching Work for Organizational Development?

Coaching works in two ways to create valuable connections.

The first is as a platform that produces independent actions toward the creation of connections with other people.

For example, executive coaching contributes to executives to create effective two-way connection with those around them.

This is a story from when I was coaching CEO in one company.

One time, I asked him to look at how he used his time. We learned that he spent 60% of his time in regular meetings with departments. The each department prepared a huge volume of materials for those regular meetings. This had continued unbroken since the time of the previous top management as the opportunity to make reports to the top management in the company.

The CEO verified the value itself of those regular meetings in our coaching. As a result, he decided to abolish all those regular meetings. In their place, he made the decision to make time to conduct one-on-one with each of his CXOs.

His CXOs were confused as to what they should prepare for those meetings, but the CEO told them that they did not need to do any preparation in advance. First, he wanted to talk with them as one-on-one. He told them he wanted to discuss with them their challenges and strategies for the future.

It took half a year until the CEO felt that his CXOs got used to those one-on-one meetings and were able to interact on a two-way basis to a certain extent.

What Are the Relationships Created by Coaching?

There is one more way in which coaching creates valuable connections. This is when creating the relationship of coaching itself creates connections.

A boss coaches his/her subordinate using a fixed time of 30 minutes. Alternatively, this coaching takes place between colleagues or even in an oblique relationship in which a person from one department meets a junior colleague in another department.

Coaching means that one person asks questions and provides support to realize the vision and achieve the targets of the other person. In other words, there is communication with a stance in which the coach tries to enhance the performance of the other person as much as possible.

A valuable two-way connection is one in which the parties attempt to improve their performance on a mutual basis. Such a relationship of mutual support is not produced immediately between both parties.

First, one person provides support to the other. Next, with that, the other person also takes action to support the person who first provided his/her support.

This then gradually sublimates into a valuable two-way connection.

Setting up sessions in which coaching is conducted in an organization like the mesh of a net is sure to lead to valuable two-way connections becoming established in that organization.

In addition, coaching is normally done by taking time on a regular basis between a boss and his/her subordinate.

The relationship between a boss and his/her subordinate is usually the one in which the boss speaks and the subordinate listens.

However, if you make a structure in which the boss listens and the subordinate speaks for a certain time during the meeting, this relationship will change to the one in which both the boss and subordinate speak so that everyone listens and talks to support each other.

That is truly a thick and vibrant neural pathway.

What Is Coaching for Organizational Development?

MIT's Thomas Malone has found the following as a result of analyzing teams demonstrating exceptional effectiveness in creative problem solving while doing research on group intelligence.

"Neither the sum of advanced intelligence nor one or two superstars in a team were particularly important. There are three features to groups that rise up even higher and produce even more effective solutions. One of these is that team members spoke with one another for the same time in general. The groups that achieved high targets did not have a single member who monopolized the conversation or those who served merely as onlookers."

Coaching is a powerful mechanism that supports organizational development by producing valuable two-way connections within organizations. It is also a communication style and a philosophy.

What is the current state of the connections in your organization?

What kind of connections do you want to increase?

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Language: Japanese

Please feel free to contact us regarding organizational coaching, organizational research or global resources development

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