Why 1-1 Coaching is Vital for Your Team’s Growth

Use 1-1 coaching to help your team and each individual be the best they can be, taking your organization to the next level.

One important aspect of training is individualized coaching, which involves working closely with team members to help them improve their skills and achieve their goals. Some managers tend to focus their coaching efforts on group coaching, which can be useful, but can also leave individuals feeling left out and unmotivated because the training isn’t individually tailored to their needs. To fully invest in every team member, 1-1 direct coaching is needed. 1-1 coaching allows leaders to build and tailor their coaching to individual needs. In this article, we will show how personalized coaching efforts can lead to better talent retention, productivity, and growth over the long term, throughout your entire organization.

The Value of 1-1 Coaching

1-1 coaching is when a team leader or manager works individually with a team member to help them improve their skills, address challenges, and achieve their goals. This type of coaching is focused on the needs and goals of the individual team member rather than on the team’s needs as a whole, though the leader should also use this time to help enhance the team’s goals. This training can cover various topics, such as career development, communication skills, leadership abilities, project management, or specific technical skills. An effective leader is willing to fully tailor their coaching to suit the individual they are speaking with rather than creating a blanket approach to their coaching.

1-1 coaching can be structured or unstructured, in that it can take the form of regularly scheduled meetings or check-ins, or it can be more informal, such as a conversation over coffee or during a break. Regardless of the format, 1-1 coaching in a team context is designed to help team members reach their full potential and contribute more effectively to their overall success. As discussed below, it is a powerful tool with many benefits for each leader and organization.

Individualized Support

One of the main reasons people leave their jobs is due to the feeling of being underappreciated and underrespected by their leadership team. 1-1 coaching provides individualized support tailored to each team member’s specific needs, which makes employees feel more listened to. Effective 1-1 coaching listens to the individual employee’s needs and creates training programs based on those needs. If an employee receives feedback, guidance, and training that is relevant and applicable to their unique circumstances, they will feel much more appreciated and valued than if they were to simply attend a group learning session unrelated to their specific role.

Employees who feel appreciated and valued will grow and improve in their role more rapidly than others. Regarding specific training, 1-1 coaching is a chance for managers to help their employees hone in on the skills most beneficial to the organization. When designing a 1-1 coaching program, consider the skills and projects your team needs to grow. Focus some of your individual training on that area to help encourage each team member’s rapid growth and efficiency.

Improved Communication

Communication gaps between managers and employees are widespread. An ineffective leader might think that because their employees are not reaching out with feedback, everything is running smoothly, and there is no need for additional communication. However, an effective leader knows that communication is critical to the team’s growth and will put effort into increasing feedback from team members. 1-1 coaching offers one of the best opportunities for leaders to receive regular feedback from their team members on how they feel and if there are any process improvements they can suggest. By simply offering a feedback opportunity in a 1-1 coaching session, you are opening up a line of communication that is direct and easily accessible, which will encourage more open communication from your team members in the future.

Along with improving feedback, individual coaching is used to improve general communication skills among team members. Use the opportunity presented by 1-1 coaching to help your team develop the skills and confidence they need to communicate effectively with you, the rest of the team, and external stakeholders. Effective communication helps your organization and team’s growth in the long term.

Enhanced Innovation

Charles Kettering, the famed inventor of the early 20th century, once said, “If you have always done it that way, it is probably wrong.” Kettering suggests innovation is needed to spur organizational growth in this quote. If your company continues to do things as they have always been done and is unwilling to make changes and introduce new ideas, it will stagnate and stop growing. Your employees represent the greatest possible resource for encouraging innovation– each has different interests, skills, and perspectives, which can lead to unique process improvements and organizational innovations– and 1-1 coaching can be used as a tool to encourage innovation.

By simply taking an interest in the personal growth of your employees, you are showing them that you care about what they have to say, increasing their likelihood of coming forward with ideas for innovation. You can also offer them personalized training and communication related to their areas of interest in your sessions, which will help them further grow in that specific area. Encouraging employees to dive deeper into their learning journeys and investing more time into their personal development will help to increase their productivity and ideas for changes, which will help your entire organization grow.

Ultimately, 1-1 coaching is a worthwhile investment in your team. It is a tool available to any leader that can be used to support each individual, improve communication, and encourage innovation. These benefits create a more engaged team willing to contribute to their personal growth and enhance your organization’s goals. Engaged employees who invest in themselves over long-term coaching programs are more likely to stick around for the long haul, which gives you, as the leader, the opportunity to build something of value for your organization truly. Use 1-1 coaching to help your team and each individual be the best they can be, taking your organization to the next level.

Michelle Cosh
Michelle Cosh is the Director of Human Resources at Accora Village, a thriving rental community located in Ottawa’s west end. The community is home to over 9,000 residents, 10 high-rise buildings, and 986 Townhomes, Garden Homes and Executive Garden Homes. At the heart of the community is the Accora centre - an exclusive health and fitness facility for residents of Accora Village and employees of Ferguslea properties.