Coaching should be an ongoing cycle of observation, feedback and support of employees.
Coaching should begin with a supervisor communicating the agency's goals and values, the position's duties and responsibilities and establishing a relationship of honest, open communication with a new employee. Going forward from hire, a supervisor would observe, assess current performance and conduct and then provide feedback and training and assistance as necessary.
Observation can include soliciting feedback from others who observe or are affected by an employee's duties and/or conduct.
Following observation and prior to providing feedback, it is useful to consider what the responsibilities and expectations of the position are, whether they have been clearly communicated to the employee, whether the employee knows what both successful and marginal results are, whether there are obstacles to the employee's performance and what the supervisor can do to assist.
A supervisor's feedback needs to be timely, clear and specific. For example, "you seem to be having difficulty meeting deadlines" is not specific. Whereas, "I received the budget reconciliation four days after your deadline" is specific. Ongoing feedback should reflect positive observations, when appropriate, as well as concerns.
Coaching regarding performance issues or misconduct should be done in private and with a positive focus.
Coaching should be documented in a supervisor's working files whether it relates to performance and/or conduct issues or outlines ongoing employee development.