Coaching lower-wage workers

13th January 2009

kitchen staffA recent study shows that everyone, at every level, can benefit from coaching and mentoring. In 2008,  seven lower-wage workers were coached over a period of approximately three months to determine if coaching was effective, and what coaching issues may be specific to such workers.

workers from every sector can benefit from coachingIt became clear that coaching was indeed a powerful tool for facilitating career development and personal development. A number of coachees went on to be promoted. The main themes that emerged were the need to develop communication skills and leadership skills; and to focus on goal clarity, financial security, stress management, self-care, and organizational obstacles.

One of the coachees said: “Coaching helped me to step back and see the big picture. I’m thinking clearer. I’m evolving really fast and looking outside of myself.” And his manager reported: “He is managing his time better and instead of micromanaging his team is now training them. You’re looking at a picture all the time and suddenly it clicks – and you get it.”

The study drew three primary conclusions. Coaching is an effective way to facilitate career development and personal growth for lower-wage workers. While there are a few coaching focus areas specific to lower-wage workers, most fundamental issues at work are common to all employees, both blue collar and professional. Coaching programmes can be quite brief and still stimulate real and positive change. Read the study in full

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