The Elements of Every Great Coaching Conversation

4 Mins

Having regular coaching conversations with your direct reports can do wonders for not only the quality of their day-to-day work, but also their growth and development.

Here are four ways to make coaching conversations great:

1. Keep a regular schedule

Don’t make your coaching conversations come out of the blue. Make them regular occurrences that both you and your direct report can look forward to.

Try 45 minutes a week.

2. Ask questions

Questions make people think. As a manager/coach, you want your direct reports to come to their own conclusions as much as possible, because they’ll be more likely to be passionate about ideas that are theirs. So ask as many questions as possible.

3. End with a clear plan

Keep deadlines and expectations clear. You can do this by writing down notes after each talk and sharing them with your direct report so you both know what needs to be done before the next coaching conversation.

4. Follow up on previous conversations

A great coaching conversation should refer to past coaching conversations. Confirm with your employee that you both have done what you committed to do in previous discussions. If you haven’t, work together to tweak the plan and make it achievable.

Quiz 1 of 1

You’re wrapping up your weekly coaching conversation with a team member. How should you end it?

By setting clear expectations about what should be done by both of you before the next meeting.
By sharing any “unfinished business” from the week.
By giving your coachee positive feedback to send them off on a high note.
By writing a recap of your coaching conversation.


In your next coaching conversation, bring up something from a previous conversation to follow up on the person's progress.

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