Investing w Purpose

Investing with a Purpose – Round II

Welcome to Round II of “Investing with a Purpose”. I hope all of you were able to start a favorable working relationship with each of your staff. The first phase of this series was like a research project. Investing and gaining knowledge. We will spend this session sorting through the information collected.

Just a Reminder, here is the outline for the “Investing with a Purpose Series”:

  • The importance of investing in your staff
  • How to invest in your staff
  • Removing performance improvement programs and implementing coaching
  • What is the expected gain/net profit

Let’s Start with Data, Data and More Data

There were several probing questions listed in series one. What did you learn about your staff? What new information did you discover? Anything totally appalling? Was there a common theme among the staff? Was your staff open to sharing? Do you feel they were truthful? If not, you should analyze this question further.

What did you learn about yourself? Your leadership skills?

As with any project, collecting data is important and useful for drawing conclusions.

Examining the Evidence

I am sure there are ranges of discoveries. Hopefully, you documented all of your findings and are ready to analyze the data. Let’s list the items in categories. This is an exercise, I will do general categories. You may use these categories and expand based on your business/department and/or findings.

Here are a few categories:

  • Opportunities
  • Value
  • Items not related to the organization/department mission

Framing the Data

Let’s examine the data collected and your observation. Outline the data in the categories you selected and indicate if there are potential barriers. Let’s call out the barriers.

Here are a few examples:

Staff Findings: 

Opportunity(ies): What are the opportunities generated from the staff? Are these items obtainable?

  • Salary: I am sure some staff mentioned an increase in salary. I assume most of us are operating on a very tight budget and would love to give deserving staff additional pay. However, it may not be possible. Also, as a manager, we understand money is not number one on the employee motivation list.
  • Barriers: Budget, employee at salary max, employee not working up to standards for Increase.


  • Honesty. All the staff requested transparency. They would like to be kept in the loop of organizational and departmental changes and updated. Many are obtaining information from other sources, not the manager.
  • Barriers: Some information is confidential and cannot be shared with staff until the last minute. As a result, no buy-in from staff nor trust.

Leader Self-Observation


  • Many staff desire to learn more and gain knowledge for promotion.
  • Barriers: Afraid to express desires thinking it will lead to loss of employment. Afraid managers will not properly train and share knowledge.


  • This was an opportunity to sit back and fully evaluate my team strength and weaknesses. With this knowledge, I can capitalize on the qualities that will benefit the employees.
  • Barriers: Dedication of time for each employee.

Based on your finding, is this the team you can take to the next level? If so, great. If not, what is missing? Is this an opportunity for you to become a coach instead of the everyday manager? Did you develop your partnership as suggested last month?


Are departments/businesses successful when they work in silos or a partnership? Partnership of course. Working as partners allows for creativity, expansion of knowledge, reduces stress and burnout. I am sure most of us want to believe that we excel in all areas of business management. We all have weaknesses. However, it does not reduce your leadership skills. Part of being a leader is being in touch with your strengths and weaknesses. We are greater leaders when we have individuals in place to balance our leadership deficits.

Did you form that partnership with your staff? Do they feel as part of the team? What are some positive responses received during or after your one-on-one with your employees? Write keys words in your journal and generate a “Wordle” (word cloud) to keep in your office. There are websites that offer free “Wordles”.

Coaching vs. Performance Improvement

Last month, I mentioned I would discuss the difference between coaching and performance improvement. In most organizations, they use the two interchangeably. Performance Improvement is not Coaching. However, Coaching is improving one’s performance.

According to Society of Human Resource Management, “performance improvement plan (PIP), also known as a performance action plan, is a tool to give an employee with performance deficiencies the opportunity to succeed. It may be used to address failures to meet specific job goals or to ameliorate behavior-related concerns. Outcomes may vary, including improvement in overall performance; the recognition of a skills or training gap; or possible employment actions such as a transfer, demotion or termination.”

Coaching serves many purposes. As mentioned several times before, coaching is an investment. Coaching is being attached to a person’s well-being and detaching from deficiencies. Consistently focusing on one’s deficiencies will deflate one’s energy. Some people just need a little push. You will be surprised when you change your approach from discipline to investing, the results are positive. You may have that employee that is burned out or just bored with the routine. Coaching will give you the opportunity to fully engage with the staff and determine the next steps. As a leader, you must be prepared to help a person move onto the next phase of their career, if necessary.

To summarize, performance improvement is the act of identifying deficiencies and developing a plan to correct. Coaching is identifying potential(s) and investing time for enhancement.Click To Tweet

Hire A Coach

Coaching is exciting and requires investment of time. Many leaders are juggling multiple work projects, as well of a busy personal life. MJ Professional Development is available based on your needs. It is imperative that leaders invest in their staff to obtain a positive return. We know this process can be overwhelming. However, professional coaching for yourself or your staff will produce successful opportunities.

Take advantage of the free 30-minute session for yourself or your staff.

A Look Ahead

Let’s do it again, next month.  We will review all assigned tasks over the last two month.  We will measure your staffing investment progression.

I appreciate your support!

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About Michelle Jolley

Michelle Jolley is a Professional Coach and the founder of MJ Professional Development Company. MJ Professional Development Company was originally established to assist individuals in developing marketable skills for the corporate industry. Over the years, Michelle has witnessed individuals and organizations having a greater need for coaching. As a result, she decided to expand her horizon and reach a greater audience.