Webinar: Using self-determination theory to predict turnover intentions and wellbeing (Resource)

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Webinar: Using self-determination theory to predict turnover intentions and wellbeing (Resource)

The research: Employee engagement continues to be an area of great interest for business leaders, organizational scholars, and coaching practitioners. Surprisingly, few studies have sought to understand if and how coaching might impact engagement, or what the downstream consequences of this might be. This study addressed this gap in the literature by testing several theory-driven hypotheses related to a core prediction that need supportive coaching would facilitate employee engagement. A coaching intervention was designed and a sample of 107 senior to mid-level managers drawn from a large Australian organization. Participants completed measures related to basic need support/satisfaction, autonomous motivation, work engagement, physical and mental ill-health and intention to quit. Support was found for the primary hypothesis, that need supportive coaching facilitated the internalization of important work goals and was indirectly linked to increases in work engagement, and improvements in mental ill-health and physical health.

Implications for practice:
This research provides preliminary evidence that need supportive coaching can drive work engagement at the individual level. The implications for practitioners include:

  • Recognizing the important role that theory can play in coaching practice.
  • That relatively brief coaching interventions can facilitate useful shifts in motivation.
  • Understanding that work engagement is impacted by a variety of factors, and that there are limitations to how much change can be reasonably expected from coaching.

Takeaways from the webinar:

  1. A recognition that theory has an important role to play in coaching practice (with examples of how this is achieved).
  2. Familiarity with core propositions of self-determination theory.
  3. Insights into the effective implementation of coaching interventions within organizations.


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