Resolution: Nurture coachable characteristics — part three

March 19, 2018By Focus on the Pharmacy Front End Blog, Independent Pharmacy, Resolutions for Independent Pharmacies

By Beth Maas, human resource manager, for the Resolutions for Independent Pharmacies blog series

This is the final post in my three-part series for the Resolutions blog, focused on important characteristics your staff should possess, yet have nothing to do with skill or talent. In my previous posts I covered being on time, work ethic, effort, body language, energy, attitude, and passion. This last post about coachable characteristics will cover being coachable, doing more than expected, and being prepared.

Another way to put “being coachable” is the willingness to adapt and learn. When an individual has the desire to do better in their job, the sky is almost the limit. When your associates know how they affect the bigger picture in your store operation and the purpose of their position, being coachable will put them in the position to learn and grow. That’s ideal for you and them. It’s much easier to manage an associate that is open to ideas and opinions of others. Being open to growth presents a lot of opportunity for everyone concerned.Be coachable

Doing more than expected is a welcome trait, isn’t it? When you have employees that are likely to go above and beyond in their position it can make work life a lot simpler. To do that, they have to be clear in what is expected of them and empowered to go beyond those tasks. Your staff that isn’t doing extra could be holding back because they don’t know what else they could be doing to help out or haven’t been given permission to do so. When associates are aware of where they can pitch in as time allows, and understand their coworkers’ responsibilities, it becomes easy for them to step up when they can.

Being prepared requires some forethought. When I was in high school and worked the 5-9pm shift at our local pharmacy after school, I knew the busiest time of the evening would be between 5:30 and 7:00pm. I knew I couldn’t stock the front-end shelves because it would be too busy. So I prepared for that by thinking ahead and making sure I didn’t leave any bins in the aisles or try to complete any other engrossing tasks because I would need to be available to customers during that time. Having foresight and being prepared are traits you can encourage by paying attention and offering suggestions to help direct their thought process and decision-making.

In summary, whether your associates have these traits or need some coaching, the best way to help them reach your expectations is to lead by example. When they have self-awareness and self-respect, their body language, energy, willingness to learn, and the rest should fall into place. Self-respect comes from self-confidence and you can aid that by empowering them in their job and helping them understand their impact on the overall business. Your associates are the face of the store. You want them to have pride in their work and the pharmacy.