Emplicity's Corporate Blog

Company and industry News

3 Keys to Coaching Nonprofit Employees

Posted by: on September 19, 2018 in employee relations Non profit


Coaching Nonprofit EmployeesOnce you’ve recruited a solid group of employees and volunteers for your organization, you want to make sure that they stick around for a while. Employees and volunteers are a vital part of what makes a nonprofit organization successful. They are the ones who are in direct contact with the community, doing a lot of the physical labor when needed and really personifying the organization’s mission. It’s important to ensure that your nonprofit staff is given the same tools that employees in for-profit organization receive, to keep them engaged and give them opportunities to grow professionally.

In order to maximize the success of your staff, and ultimately your organization, you should be consistently helping them develop their talents through coaching. Coaching can make a significant impact on the retention of good quality workers in the nonprofit sector and can help grow nonprofit employees into nonprofit leaders. Here are three key tips for effectively coaching nonprofit employees:

Collaborative Efforts

Coaching should not be a one-sided approach, and it works best when employees are given the tools and independence to impact their own improvement and development too. Using a more collaborative approach when coaching creates a better experience for all involved. In a collaborative coaching approach, the coach ideally offers support, guidance and encouragement to the employee, but empowers them to come up with their own solutions and problem solving techniques.

Collaborative coaching techniques include asking strategic questions rather than making direct observations or declarative statements. By asking rather than telling, the coach transfers ownership to the employee and allows them the space to identify opportunities for improvement as well as ways to address said opportunities.

Make Coaching Available to Everyone

It’s often assumed that coaching is reserved for employees who are struggling, but that’s far from accurate. If this misconception exists among members of your organization, you should absolutely address it. While coaching is certainly a good tool when an employee’s performance needs improving, its usefulness extends far beyond disciplinary or corrective measures.

Studies have shown that in workplaces where coaching is presented as a performance management technique, employees tend to want to avoid it. However, when coaching is perceived as a positive professional development technique, employees are much more interested in having the opportunity to be coached.

Both employees and volunteers can benefit from effective coaching, so it’s important to introduce it as a positive and beneficial experience, and make it available to any worker who might be interested. Coaching your top-performing staff members may focus on developing their current strengths or building new leadership skills, while coaching for your less-consistent workers may involve fostering better work habits and improving their capabilities.

Coach for the Future, not the Present or Past

Effective coaching focuses on goals for the future, rather than on present or past actions. Engaging your employees in this way allows them to visualize their place in the organization in the future, helping to improve employee morale and retention. While you can’t prevent employees from leaving the organization and taking their skills elsewhere, by focusing on their role in the company and giving them goals to work towards down the road, you are encouraging loyalty among staff and preparing your organization for a successful future.

Emplicity understands that HR Outsourcing should be simple and meaningful. As a Professional Employer Organization (PEO), we strive to be a great partner in supporting your business. If you would like to request more information on how we can assist your needs, please reach out to us at 877-476-2339. We are located in California – Orange County, Los Angeles, and the greater Sacramento and San Francisco area.

NOTICE: Emplicity provides HR advice and recommendations. Information provided by Emplicity is not intended as a substitute for employment law counsel. At no time will Emplicity have the authority or right to make decisions on behalf of their clients.