The 4 Most Impactful Benefits of Executive Coaching

A female business executive working on her computer with a coach
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Professional learning and development is a smart investment for any business. By improving your people, you’re improving your organization, and starting at the top with programs like executive coaching can have far-reaching positive effects throughout your company. 

Interested in learning more? In this article, we’ll take a look at what executive coaching is and outline four of its most significant benefits for your business.

What Is Executive Coaching?

Executive coaching pairs an executive or other high-potential employee with a professional coach who assists them in reaching a specific developmental goal within a set period of time. The said goal might be to build an important skill, overcome a personal obstacle, or plot out a career path.

A professional coach may, for example, assist a new executive in developing a skill, such as decision-making, listening, or empathy, or support a veteran leader in overcoming a fear or difficulty with public speaking.

While somewhat similar to mentorship, the relationship between coach and employee is more finite, structured, and focused on specific developmental goals. Milestones and scheduled check-ins are employed to track progress.

Coaches are also usually trained in coaching, specifically, while there are coaching programs that match employees with coaches who have background knowledge in the coachee’s field. 

Four Reasons to Keep Executive Coaching on Your Radar

Now that you know what executive coaching is, here are four of the biggest impacts a good executive coaching program can have on your business:

  1. Enhanced productivity and performance at the individual, team, and organizational levels. There could be an up to 70% increase in individual performance – including productivity at all levels – according to one study. This is also a marked increase over development efforts that don’t utilize a coach, with productivity potentially increasing by 88% with coaching versus just 22% with training alone.
  2. Boosting your executives’ leadership skills and self-awareness can ripple out in ways you may not expect. Better productivity is just the start. The right coaching goals can instill empathy in your leadership, reducing their distance from their teams. With workers feeling better supported by strong leadership, employee satisfaction can rise and absenteeism could potentially decrease fairly significantly. With leaders leading better and acting with empathy, retention and engagement can both improve.
  3. You’ll be building a path for better succession planning. A well-made executive coaching plan doesn’t need to benefit only current leaders and executives. By looping promising, high-potential employees into executive coaching, you’re creating a succession plan and ensuring sustainable stability for your business.
  4. Fostering a resilient team of executives and leaders. Not only can successful executive coaching deliver a significant confidence boost to the person coached, it can potentially help them build both emotional intelligence and self-awareness if you’re setting the right goals. EI and self-awareness are key to navigating tumultuous times. By building better leaders, you’re future-proofing your organization.

What to Know Before You Build a Coaching Strategy

Executive coaching can have a potentially massive ROI in terms of performance and productivity at the individual and team levels – up to 66% greater than training alone. However, coaching is not a plug-and-play development tool.

Here are some things you’ll want to keep in mind as you start to build your executive coaching program…

  • Understand what executive coaching isn’t. Though similar, it’s distinct from mentorships, which are long-term relationships between colleagues with similar career paths but at different experience levels. Executive coaching is more focused than career or life coaching, and is not a replacement for traditional counseling by a licensed mental health expert.
  • Successful coaching requires real investment from both parties. The employee you want to be coached must be interested in self-improvement. If they do not want to be coached, if they lack self-awareness, or if they are not open to changing themselves, they are unlikely to have a good or successful experience.
  • Coaching is about meeting specific goals, like developing a skill or mapping out a career plan. Conduct a needs assessment to see where growth would most benefit your business, then work with the employee(s) who will be coached to identify what exactly coaching should aim to achieve.

Getting Started with Executive Coaching

Make sure you’re connecting with the right coach. Not only should the coach you select have demonstrable experience and expertise in their field, they should be compatible with the person they’re coaching. Measurable success is most easily achieved with a vetted coach, strong rapport, and clear, achievable goals.

Want to make the hunt for the right coach easier? Check out Sayge and get personalized virtual coaching at scale, matching your people with certified professional coaches to unlock your executives’ hidden potential and maximize their growth!

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