Personalized coaching is the best way for organizations to transfer legacy knowledge to new employees, create highly skilled subject matter experts, and allow employees to practice objection handling in a structured environment. While personalized coaching is irrefutably impactful, it is also very expensive for corporations and hard to scale—often removing it as a possible training medium.
The good news is, there is a new talent management strategy that brings the benefits of personalized coaching into organizations without having to bear the burdensome costs. This new training technology is called Virtual Role-play (VRP), or commonly known as Virtual Coaching.
What is Virtual Coaching?
Virtual coaching combines the power of modern training technology with age-old coaching techniques to provide a medium where employees can respond to life-like scenarios and practice handling objections virtually. Through a virtual coaching interface, coaches record and upload video prompts for employees to respond to and employees are prompted to submit a video response in return to be graded by their virtual coach. This interface allows employees to practice until they feel as though they have perfected their response, while also giving coaches (and the organization as a whole) a clear picture on how their employees would react to a customer in a real-world scenario.
Virtual coaching has a wide variety of uses. Businesses use it to train new employees on everything from sales techniques to new software applications. Coaches who specialize in areas such as career, health, life coaching, and other areas can offer their services to people anywhere in the world. The most obvious advantage of this process is that clients and coaches can connect more easily, without anyone traveling. This means lower costs and faster delivery.
Uses for Virtual Coaching
With today’s enterprise LMS technology, virtual coaching is a feasible alternative for traditional coaching. Here are a few examples of how virtual coaching works in several different areas.
- Sales Training - One of the most promising uses for this virtual role-play technology is for sales training. Virtual sales training provides several advantages over the traditional type of sales training. With sophisticated training systems, sales representatives are quickly educated about the products or services they are selling. Role-playing scenarios allow coaches to simulate customers and raise typical objections. Because virtual training erases geographical boundaries, it’s possible to coach sales reps at the last-minute for upcoming meetings, increasing their confidence and competence. In some cases, it’s necessary to educate sales reps about issues in a specific region or regarding a particular prospect. Virtual coaching is ideal for such scenarios, such as when sales reps are traveling. For many businesses, virtual sales training produces impressive results.
- Hospitality Industry Training - Employees in the hospitality industry require a high-level of customer service skills, and a familiarity with the company’s standards and policies is essential. Virtual hospitality coaching, using tools such as training videos, helps your hotel, resort, or restaurant maintain brand consistency and bring out the best in your employees. This type of coaching is also useful for training people with leadership potential, helping them to advance more quickly.
- Virtual Health Coaching - Another area that virtual coaching is extremely useful is healthcare training. This includes everything from fitness coaching to medical professionals coaching patients with serious illnesses or injuries. Some of the possibilities for virtual health coaching include health screenings to determine patient risks, lifestyle management, nutritional advice, and help for people recuperating from accidents. Businesses can offer virtual healthcare coaching to employees to offer preventative and lifestyle advice in areas such as exercise, weight loss, giving up smoking, addictions and other important health issues. One of the biggest advantages of this approach is that it allows homebound patients easy access to medical advice.
- Counseling, Therapy, and Life Coaching - In addition to its applications in business, education, and healthcare, virtual coaching is also promising for helping counselors, psychologists, life coaches and others who work with clients one-on-one. While other alternatives to in-person sessions, such as phone calls and online chats are impersonal, virtual coaching includes video technology, making it nearly like a face-to-face session. For certain clients, virtual therapy or life coaching has advantages over traditional sessions. For example, people with Asperger’s or social anxiety find it less threatening to interact online.
- Financial Services Training - Companies in the financial sector can offer employee compliance training and other training to meet regulatory requirements. Employees in different areas can access training on customer service, banking security, lending policies, and any other relevant areas.
The Leading Benefits of Virtual Coaching
We’ve looked at just some of the possible uses for virtual coaching. Now let’s examine some of the benefits that apply to this type of coaching.
Virtual coaching has many benefits for a wide range of industries. We’ve looked at some of the most promising areas, but virtual coaching technology has potential in almost any field that requires coaching or training.
- Convenient - With virtual coaching, it’s easy for coaches and employees to connect even when they are in different cities or countries. It also gives employees the flexibility to practice responding to prompts when they have spare time, and from a location they are most comfortable.
- Economical - As opposed to the traditional coaching method where a coach would have to repeat coachings session scenarios with different employees, virtual role-play allows coaches to upload a single recording that can go out to multiple employees or employee groups, regardless of individual or group location. Virtual coaching can result in significant cost savings for organizations as opposed to using a traditional coaching method.
- Easy interaction with technology - Many of the latest training methods require videos, games, training exercises, and other technological tools. Virtual coaching makes this simple, as clients or employees are using a device to access the coaching. Screens can quickly move between a web page, a coach giving a talk, and a training video.
- Results-tracking - Track progress by scoring responses. In industries such as finance and hospitality, employers easily observe which employers show the most potential. If someone struggles with a certain question or issue, he or she repeats the lesson until it sinks in.
Virtual coaching has many benefits for a broad range of industries. We’ve looked at some of the most promising areas, but this technology has potential in almost any field that requires coaching or training. Advanced LMS technology makes it possible to train or coach people for any purpose. To find out more about how virtual coaching can benefit your organization, contact Knowledge Anywhere.
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