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HBR Guide to Coaching Employees (HBR Guide Series) by Harvard Business Review

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Chapter 11

Tailor Your Coaching to People’s Learning Styles

by David A. Kolb and Kay Peterson

As you coach your employees to develop their skills or improve their performance, you can set them up for success by understanding how they learn best and adjusting your methods accordingly. They may prefer learning through intense experience, sustained reflection, analytical thinking, goal-directed action, or a combination of approaches (the basic steps in what we call the Experiential Learning Cycle—see figure 11-1). By tapping into their preferred styles, you will engage them more deeply and motivate them. As a result, they’ll make greater—and faster—progress toward their goals.

FIGURE 11-1

If the benefits of customized coaching are so clear, why ...

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