Sometimes coaching the coaches pays off, especially when it comes to helping managers give more effective employee feedback.
Below are some tips you should pass along to make your managers/coaches more successful:
Determine broad objectives, and accentuate the positive. The more specific you can be about how you define success for the participant, the better. But managers also want to identify larger professional development goals. And these should be phrased in a constructive way. So instead of the manager saying, “You need to get along better with your co-workers,” the objective can be stated: “You’ll be able to get more resources and support for your ideas if you navigate department personality differences with a little more patience.”
Give them as much information as you can. This might include past reviews, personality assessment reports, or online or interview-based 360 degree feedback. While the employee may already have a lot of this information, if he or she hasn’t been working for the coach/manager for an extended period, there might be a lot of data in there that the manager’s not familiar with.
This is an opportunity to be blunt — take it. This is a good time to cut through the politically correct jargon and candidly describe what you see are both the strengths and weaknesses of the employee being coached. Such unvarnished comments are often incredibly useful to the manager/coach, who may not be entirely sure of how the process is going to work and what the end result will be.