How to Take a Coach Approach for Leaders

Do you want to have far better conversations with people of different generations?

Would you like to increase engagement and motivation?

Do you want to incorporate a coach approach to your management style but you aren’t sure where to start?

Are you one of the many people that can recall managers from your past who seemed to be showing you daily examples of how NOT to do it? They probably were not good at what we call taking a "Coach Approach."

Taking a Coach Approach is a very different and far more effective style than the outdated manager-as-expert in a knowing and telling mode. Taking a Coach Approach will help you to:  

'According to recent research, the single most important managerial competency that separates highly effective managers from average ones is coaching.'

 "You Can’t Be a Great Manager If You’re Not a Good Coach", Harvard Business Review 

  • Learn how to build and maintain trust in your relationships
  • Ask insightful questions that are challenging, supportive and invoke self-discovery
  • Use questions to increase dialogue, engagement and accountability
  • Be a better listener and use listening on all levels 
  • Speak candidly about difficult topics in a respectful and constructive way
  • Notice how you are perceived by others and how your behaviors link to your results
  • Connect your perceptions, assumptions, and emotions with your leadership presence
  • Notice and build on the strengths of others

How to Take a Coach Approach is our introductory level training in coaching skills. It can be customized as needed to accommodate a half day of training or a full day (which includes more practice and more opportunity to apply the coach approach to real life scenarios).

Participants apply their learning to scenarios and to real life examples and they experience live action coaching from the coaches facilitating the learning.

The 6 Practices of a Coach Approach are based on the core competencies of executive coaching as defined by the International Coach Federation (ICF).

Upon completion of How to Take a Coach Approach training, participants will have:

  1. Learned the 6 Practices of a Coach Approach
  2. Expanded their range of management styles
  3. Advanced their self-awareness
  4. Applied the Coach Approach to relevant scenarios
  5. Practiced peer-coaching with the support of experienced coaches
  6. Increased their confidence and coaching abilities
  7. Elevated their leadership skills



At LeaderSharp we believe that learning stems from integrating experience with skillful practice and personalized feedback from experienced coaches.


'Managers who notice opportunities in the moment to be intentional about their own presence, build trust, ask great questions, listen for what is important, acknowledge, recognize and build on the strengths of others and provide candid feedback that doesn’t create a defensive reaction are taking a Coach Approach to management.'

LeaderSharp Group 

  1. Prepare yourself - The Coach Approach begins with you. Cultivate your self-awareness, recognize your role in the relationship, and consider how you come across to others. Notice how your perceptions, assumptions, judgments, and emotions impact your presence as a leader.
  2. Build trust - Trust is foundational to all good relationships and building trust is an ongoing process making every interaction an opportunity to do so. Work environments that are based on mutual trust and respect allow people to take risks, admit mistakes, and communicate openly and honestly.
  3. Ask great questions - Curiosity coupled with open-ended and insightful questions invites others into the dialogue, encourages participation and exploration of many possibilities, and creates shared ownership and accountability. This increases engagement and motivation of employees.
  4. Be a great listener - Despite our best efforts we talk more than we listen, and when we are listening, we are often thinking about what we want to say next. Great listening starts with being fully present, attentive and focused on the other person, listening with our head, heart and gut.
  5. Build on their strengths - Managers often underestimate the importance of recognizing and acknowledging people for their strengths and contributions. The Neuroscience and Positive Psychology proves that we perform better and experience the most growth when we build on our strengths.
  6. Be Candid - Providing ongoing candid feedback creates choice and empowers positive change. It adds clarity and specificity, and makes the issue explicit. Being candid is often described as holding up a mirror, speaking the truth or naming the issue.