Employee surveys have been around for a long time. The current terminology is “employee engagement survey.” Years ago we called them “employee opinion surveys.” The goal of these surveys is to improve the organization.
The macro process is almost identical in every organization. First, the survey is administered, which involves a campaign from HR to maximize participation. A campaign is necessary because employees generally don’t look forward to participating. The results are analyzed and presented to the company. Managers and executives generally don’t look forward to this step. It’s often painful, but it’s considered necessary for improvement. Then, based on the results, strategies are initiated to improve the organization as measured by the next survey, and then the cycle repeats.
There’s a conundrum inherent in leadership development. The drive that energizes people to climb the organizational ladder can become a liability once they get onto its upper rungs – if they don’t change the focus of their efforts. Suddenly, high achievers find themselves with fewer upward rungs available to energize their growth and achievement. Even in larger organizations, leaders may wait decades for an upward rung to become available through retirement, organizational growth, reorganization or the departure of a more senior leader… and even then there are often several people waiting for only one opening on an upward rung.
Leadership coaching is widely available; finding an executive coach is almost too easy. Selecting one with criteria that makes sense to you is not as easy. What likely confuses the leader seeking coaching is plowing through the many varieties of leadership coaching choices that are offered. Leadership coaching comes in many flavors, shapes and sizes. While this might sound like an advantage, it contributes to the complexity of selecting a coach and program. Now the busy leader must determine which coaching program will make a difference. A leader’s time, like any professional’s time, is scarce.