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The Manager as Coach: The Role of Feedback Orientation

Abstract

Purpose

This study investigated the consequences of manager feedback orientation in the manager-as-coach process. Integrating theories of feedback and coaching, we examined the extent to which manager feedback orientation was related to indicators of effective coaching and subordinate feedback orientation.

Design/methodology/approach

One hundred three manager–subordinate dyads participated in this study.

Findings

Managers who value feedback for themselves (high feedback orientation) were viewed as better coaches as assessed through employee perceptions of coaching behaviors, the coaching relationship, and the feedback environment. Manager feedback orientation was also related to subordinate feedback orientation, and this relationship was mediated by the coaching effectiveness indicators.

Implications

This study demonstrated that the coaching manager with higher feedback orientation is viewed as more effective than the coaching manager with lower feedback orientation. This study assesses previously untested theories of coaching and demonstrates the value of manager feedback orientation in the coaching process.

Originality/value

This is the first study to integrate the feedback and coaching literatures to test derived hypotheses regarding feedback orientation in the manager-as-coach framework.

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Correspondence to Lisa A. Steelman.

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Steelman, L.A., Wolfeld, L. The Manager as Coach: The Role of Feedback Orientation. J Bus Psychol 33, 41–53 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10869-016-9473-6

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10869-016-9473-6

Keywords

  • Coaching
  • Managerial coaching
  • Manager-as-coach
  • Feedback
  • Feedback orientation
  • Feedback environment
  • Coaching behaviors