Leadership Skill Training

Leadership Development At Home
Teach, Coach & Expect for Kids' Success

Parents can apply basic leadership skill training at home with their kids for a happier home environment.

Throughout our lives we have instances where things become amazingly clear. We often refer to these instances as 'Ah-ha!' moments. My wife recently shared one of these moments with me and I knew right away that many parents would be able to relate.

I asked her to share her experience because I believe it's a great example of how parents can effectively use leadership training tools and techniques at home...

I just experienced an 'ah-ha' moment about leadership skill training at home while scrubbing the tub in the kids’ bathroom, fuming over our teenage daughter’s lack of basic housekeeping skills.

Expecting company, I was busy directing traffic at home in an effort to get the house ready for guests to arrive. I didn't ask anyone else to clean the bathroom because I have pretty high expectations and I knew it would be faster if I took on that particular task myself.

Unfortunately, we were running way behind and I quickly found myself wishing I could delegate the task to my oldest daughter with confidence that the bathroom would be company-ready.

In our family We are typically “all hands on deck” with chores and housecleaning, but when it comes time for deep cleaning, I find myself doing the bulk of the work. The kids simply do not have the attention to detail that I would demand in order to pass inspection.

More times than not, when the kids’ job does not pass parental inspection, this can quickly lead to a downward spiral child-parent relations, ending in frustration for all parties involved.

Sound familiar?

My “ah-ha” moment while scrubbing the tub came right after I asked myself one simple question out of sheer frustration. “Had I taken the time to clean alongside my daughter, teaching her and coaching her, so she would know what needed to be done and how to do it?”

I knew the simple answer immediately... "No. I had not."

I was thoroughly disappointed in myself. With a busy household of five, we had taken the 'divide and conquer' approach. Sending the kids off to complete their assigned tasks, assuming they knew what to do and how to do it. They had seen us doing the same household tasks, like vacuuming, loading and unloading the dishwasher, folding laundry, for years - so no need to spell it out, right? Wrong.

I can’t believe that I never thought to apply my basic leadership skill training with my kids for household jobs!

Household jobs are like any other jobs in the workplace and require a manager to take the time to Teach-Coach-Expect, before Inspecting; this is the foundation of effective leadership.

Throughout our website we have talked about the importance for all managers to be hands-on teaching and coaching employees. Only after employing some basic leadership skill training can they justify holding employees accountable to meet expectations. The same is true when dealing with our kids. Developing leadership for kids starts at home, and we can begin too early in preparing them for the expectations that life will bring.

Here's a quick reminder of the Teach, Coach, Expect approach to leadership skill training:

  • Teach - Instruct the employee. Typically in a classroom setting or online learning environment. This is the introduction of discovering new information and concepts that one needs to develop a new skill or level of expertise.
  • Coach - Mentor the employee. Coaching refers to taking the extra time to work side by side the employee (or child) and walking them through the new activity to ensure they fully understand what is expected of them. Only by taking this step can you truly know whether or not the employee has developed the necessary skills to complete the tasks at hand and achieve the overall goals and objectives.
  • Expect - Hold the employee accountable. Now that you know the employee is knowledgeable and capable of achieving the tasks assigned, you can expect results without hesitation. Praise the employee when results are achieved. However, when performance is lacking you'll need to take corrective action to reverse any negative trends.
    (Note: Before ever taking corrective action, the leader/parent must first take a look into the leadership mirror. Ask yourself, "Have I taught this person properly? Have I coaching this person and prepared them to be successful in this area of performance?" If the answer is yes, then it's fair to hold the employee accoutable. However, if the answer is no, then you'll need to go back and invest some more time in your employee.)

Teach, Coach, Expect is a simple, yet powerful leadership skill training technique this works with employees as well as at home with children and young adults.

We are pleased to report that after investing some additional time (coaching), our oldest daughter is now up to the task of cleaning the bathroom to the 'company-ready' standard. After investing the time to clean side by side, clearly defining 'clean' and showing her how to clean, my wife feels much more at ease when delegating more complex household chores - all thanks to some basic leadership skill training.

One additional benefit that has come from this experience is that our daughter now has a higher level of expectation for herself. Her definition of 'clean' has been heightened, and this is carrying through to other areas that she is responsible for.

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