When executives and managers seek help with becoming the best leader they can be, they increasingly turn to HR coaches for support and guidance. An HR coach offers one-on-one planning, feedback and assessment for high-level executives, managers and supervisors, addressing human resource issues and opportunities that affect an entire organization.
Business executives see the value in retaining professional HR coaching, especially as the global economy and business environment become more complex. The need for human resource expertise continues to fuel a strong demand for the services of skilled HR coaches, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expects the HR management sector to experience solid growth in the coming years. All of these signs point to a positive outlook for HR professionals considering an HR coaching career.
While HR coaches encourage managers and executives to advance in their careers, they support an organization’s growth and positively affect the bottom line. By targeting leadership skills and behavioral areas that require attention, they can help improve employee relations and positively impact productivity and profitability.
Using tools such as interviews and self-assessment tests, the HR coach will assess the needs of the organization, along with the strengths and weaknesses of the manager or supervisor. They then provide feedback on how the individual can improve their handling of particular situations, how their personal styles and behaviors affect others, and how alternative actions can be more effective.
Active listening and sharp observation skills allow HR coaches to ask targeted questions that expose problem areas in a manager’s behavior and can lead to effective solutions. Every executive and supervisor handles feedback differently, and the skilled HR coach is always prepared to handle such situations.
HR coaches work with managers, supervisors and executives at various levels and stages in their careers; they need to be knowledgeable about management and behavioral theory and practices in order to provide impartial feedback. Upon providing such feedback, they develop goal-setting strategies and a training plan. The HR coach does not force change or make decisions; rather, the coach’s follow-up and support will help the manager discover solutions to identified problems and grow in their leadership role. Measuring and assessing the manager’s progress is an important aspect of the HR coach’s process. Once the established goals are achieved, the HR coach will help the manager transition to a long-term development plan.
Developing strong HR coaching relationships in an organization requires a great deal of trust between coach and executive. Confidentiality is a must, along with strong diplomacy and interpersonal skills, to help the executive fully develop his or her potential and make good choices for the organization.
A large component of establishing trust is having the right education, professional training and respected credentials that prove you have the skills required to be an effective HR coach. A bachelor’s degree or equivalent would likely be required for the HR coaching role. In addition, professional training in management, planning, data analysis and measurement, and labor relations will go a long way toward establishing credibility.
By enrolling in a professional training program, HR managers and other professionals can sharpen business skills, gain up-to-date human resources knowledge and earn industry-respected HR certificates that can facilitate the transition to a fulfilling and satisfying career as an HR coach.
Professional HR training can prepare you to earn HR certifications. To obtain respected university credentials, along with a solid human resources education that can lead to success as an HR coach, consider enrolling in a Master of Science in Human Resource Development degree program. Coursework typically includes courses aimed at helping students prepare for the SHRM PHR and SPHR Certifications, including organizational change management, human resource technology solutions, human resource metrics and statistical research, and organizational training.
If you’re an HR professional looking for an opportunity to take your career in a new direction, consider becoming an HR coach. Professional training can prepare you for this role by expanding your understanding of organizational and management behavior, and further developing your HR skills. In addition, professional training will prepare you to earn credibility-enhancing industry certifications. Becoming a successful HR coach is possible when you combine your interest in helping others develop their leadership ability with the skills and knowledge you’ll obtain by earning a Master Certificate in Human Resource Management, or from enrolling in a Master of Science in Human Resources Development degree program.