Is Your Coaching Culture Covering all 4 Bases?


January 7, 2022

Most of us have experienced and witnessed the transformative power coaching can have at work (and in life). The right kind of coaching can dramatically improve someone’s experience and engagement at work. Building a culture of coaching at your organization has a dramatic impact on learning and development initiatives, but it’s much easier said than done.

In her book, Wired to Connect, Dr. Britt Andreatta, renowned expert on neuroscience and learning, identifies four types of coaching conversations:

  • Problem-solving: Used for a specific project or situation they need help thinking through.
  • Performance: When they need to improve or develop a new skill to do their current job well.
  • Development: To help high-performers prepare for the next level of skill and/or responsibility.
  • Career: To help employees identify their long-term career goals and plan for achieving them.

In order to have these conversations, most people would turn to their managers as their main (or only) resource. And therein lies the problem. Managers in today’s workplace are faced with challenges previous generations never had to contend with. They’re overburdened and under-resourced. Even with the best intentions, managers today aren’t given the proper space or opportunity to build their coaching and leadership acumen, so they simply lack the skills necessary to help their team—and themselves.

Coaching Culture Breakthrough

This is where the breakthrough to creating a coaching culture comes in; a single form of coaching that covers all four of these needed conversations: peer coaching. According to The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, peer coaching is “a type of helping relationship in which two people of equal status actively participate in helping each other with specific tasks or problems, with a mutual desire to be helpful.”

The beauty of peer coaching is, given the right structure and framework, peers can coach each other across all these paradigms, while building relationships across typically siloed organizations. The additional power of peers is that there’s no hierarchy, which means increased psychological safety within these conversations, unlocking the potential for true growth.

Coaching Conversations

On the Imperative platform, we’ve seen firsthand the incredible benefits peers can help each other achieve through ongoing, guided peer coaching conversations. The platform is scientifically engineered to facilitate trusted, impactful conversations that are personalized to each individual, designed to meet specific outcomes and result in powerful relationships that did not exist before.

Given the frenetic pace of work today, finding a multi-use tool is wildly helpful, but peer coaching is unique in that it also is a groundbreaking way to finally democratize coaching—something coaching proponents have been advocating for years. Through this type of coaching, you’re able to meet your people where they are currently, while growing and developing them to further help their teams and colleagues.

On the Imperative platform, coaching conversations occur every two weeks and are designed to be in the flow of work: with a structure that makes it easy to get started but flexible enough to meet the type of coaching conversation employees need that day.

Our clients, like Airbnb, Zillow, Microsoft and Hasbro, have seen powerful results like this:

  • Personal Growth—78% of employees report peer coaching made them more successful
  • Deeper Connections—89% of connections created build a meaningful and sustained relationship
  • Holistic Wellbeing—Employees leave each conversation with 2.4X more positive emotions
  • Shared Purpose—85% of employees report the ability to connect their purpose to their work
  • Radical Flexibility—After every conversation, 80% of employees take action to craft their job

Going into 2022, know this: it’s possible to create a culture of coaching that deeply impacts your people and unlocks personal and professional development that far surpasses your goals.

Our mission at Imperative is to humanize work and make work more fulfilling for every person.  After 30,000 hours of peer coaching conversations, the data is in: peer coaching is the bright spot you’re looking for. Let’s chat about how we can bring this to life for your company:

See the platform in action