No matter how much enthusiasm and willingness to succeed a team of employees have, if they lack the skills that are necessary to perform tasks to a high standard, the business will struggle to achieve its objectives over the long-term. Not only can a skills shortage result in a lack of necessary output levels - thus failing to achieve desired sales targets - but it can also cause other problems like poor quality manufactured products or customer service which can have a significantly damaging and detrimental effect upon the company. To combat this, training and development courses along with business coaching sessions can be utilised to improve not only the skills and abilities of individual employees, but also to increase levels of teamworking and operational efficiency.
A number of managers will try and decide between one or the other, but in fact business coaching and training courses can work hand-in-hand to form a powerful combination, and one which rapidly improves the abilities and capabilities of the workforce.
Whilst training and development courses will teach and impart new knowledge to attendees (or remind and refresh existing information which they had already been taught long ago but had since forgotten), business coaching or executive coaching sessions performed on an individual one-to-one basis will assist the person to put that knowledge to good effect when back in the workplace.
Coaching and mentoring also has the objective of identifying metaphorical barriers which are preventing the individual from maximising their potential and being the most effective worker that they could possibly be. Once identified, these barriers can then begin to be tackled, beginning with the creation of an action plan. This plan needs to be a collaboration between the coach and the individual, rather than simply being dictated by the coach as instructions to be followed. A significant component of business coaching and mentoring relates to helping the individual largely come up with solutions on their own whilst being provided with guidance from the coach. An employee who takes ownership and buys into the plan going forward will be significantly more determined to see it through to a successful outcome if they feel largely responsible for what the plan entails. If on the other hand it was dictated to them in the form of instructions, they may become resentful and openly opposed to the changes, or at the very least apathetic to its success.
In some ways receiving business coaching without training is like getting only half of the development pie, and equates to a diluted attempt at increasing the performance and abilities of a single or group of workers. By receiving both, not only will workers gain a far greater knowledge base through what they learn on the training course, but business coaching can guide them on how to best use this knowledge. Having knowledge and not knowing the best way to use it is just as unproductive as removing all barriers to progress but not having the knowledge or skills to put it into effect! This is why more and more training and development managers are realising the major advantages of enrolling themselves or their employees on business coaching and training, rather than viewing them as mutually exclusive and trying to decide between one or the other.
By improving the skills and abilities of the workforce, not to mention increasing motivation by removing obstructions and problem issues which were interfering with their work, a business will have a much greater chance of being a success and achieving its goals, whatever they may be.