Making Coaching Feedback Work: How to Get the Most Out of It

Coaching is an effective way to help others reach their goals and develop their skills. It is essential to ask for feedback on comments to understand how the message is received, as people often confuse training with evaluation. Appreciation is a reward in itself, but it is not enough to retain the best. We also need sponsorship and promotion to move towards personal professional goals, such as status, visibility and recognition.

Getting feedback from coaching can be challenging. There are three main issues that I have noticed, particularly around appreciation and training. Firstly, we tend to focus too much on evaluation and less on appreciation and training. This is not the time to set more goals, but to appreciate and recognize more, as this will double our efforts and replenish our energy levels.

Secondly, appreciation may be uncomfortable at first, but it is not a difficult practice to start and maintain. Lastly, coaching is often underestimated. This has been my experience so far, including through some field research on high-performing, high-stress environments such as technology startups and financial services.CTO Craft works with CTOs, engineering managers, teams and entire companies to develop strategy and leadership skills through organized and personalized training, mentoring, workshops and training. The quantity and quality of the comments you give to your players is one of the most important keys for them to develop them. Giving effective feedback is an important communication skill for coaches.

While everyone responds a little differently to training, there are some general principles you can use when giving feedback to your players. To improve your training, keep the following guidelines in mind when you and your players communicate with each other. The guidelines will help you create and maintain a positive and productive team environment. The comments you give should be as specific as possible. For example, instead of saying “Good job” in a general way, tell the player specifically what they did well.

Michelle, keeping your head and glove resting on the dirt ball hit hard is a much more specific way of giving your opinion. Make sure your players know exactly why you're praising them and they'll be more likely to repeat it. Give your opinion as soon as possible after the behavior or situation occurs. If a player does something, we'll tell her right away instead of waiting until after training (or a week later). The best example I can think of to illustrate this point is trying to train your dog to sit.

When the dog starts to lie down on its back legs, you should immediately give it a dog treat or a pat on the head. You can't train a dog to sit around waiting to be rewarded a day later. It's the same with humans. Compliment them soon after they behave the way you want, and reward them with a compliment. Use positive and corrective feedback frequently when players are learning skills and strategies for the first time. Early and frequent feedback will help them build their confidence when they succeed and will allow them to return to normal if they struggle or are off course.

Then, as skills and strategies are better learned and mastered, less feedback is needed. This point is especially important for youth coaches since your players are in the learning stages of the game. Regardless of a player's current skill level, successful training depends on your feedback to motivate, challenge, direct and support players in their quest to improve their skills. There are plenty of opportunities for guidance or feedback conversations about performance, development, and issues related to employee engagement and work in an inclusive and supportive environment. Ongoing training and feedback between managers and employees are integral to employee performance, development, and ongoing engagement. The other side of giving good feedback - which is just as important - is receiving feedback with kindness, filtering out the gold nuggets and using them well. Many of the most successful coaches give much more positive instruction-based feedback than negative while increasing the quality of their comments. The success of training depends on your feedback to motivate, challenge, direct and support players in their quest to improve their skills.

Many coaches are surprised by both the quantity and quality of the feedback they give during a typical practice. Use your own coaching staff to advise you as you improve the quantity and quality of the feedback you provide.

Kristin Almazan
Kristin Almazan

Hipster-friendly music junkie. Lifelong twitter scholar. Proud food buff. Unapologetic music specialist. Twitter trailblazer.

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