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Factors that Influence Coaching Program Outcomes

Factors that Influence Coaching Program Outcomes

Over the years, leadership coaching has become one of the leading intervention strategies organizations use to support the development and learning of their employees in the executive level. Its growing popularity could be attributed to the rapid changes occurring within the corporate landscape, compelling businesses to help their leaders cope with the demands of their roles.

Although most people would assume that successful coaching program outcomes are derived solely from the guidance of a highly skilled and competent coach, there is, in fact, a myriad of factors that contribute to the success or failure of a coaching program.

Below are some of the key factors that influence coaching program outcomes:

Quality of the Coach
The popularity of coaching has caused executive coaching companies to proliferate, with various coaches presenting their own strategies to lure organizations to avail of their services. It is, therefore, essential to establish a set of criteria to ensure that the coach is credible, competent, and aware of the goals of the organization. A formally trained coach with a strong background in leadership roles can make a big difference in helping clients identify their needs, develop their leadership style, and devise methods to address challenges in the workplace. Although employing coaches of great caliber does not guarantee success, it is the first step towards realizing the change that organizations wish to achieve.

Commitment of Coachee
The executive is equally responsible in fulfilling certain responsibilities as the coachee to ensure that he or she, along with the organization, gets the best out of the coaching program. Several studies have reported that an executive’s commitment and willingness to participate in leadership coaching plays an important role in ensuring the program’s success. However demanding an executive’s role is, he or she must make time for coaching sessions and strive to apply the valuable lessons and new skills learned during the program. It is also wise to understand that the coach is not a ‘sage on the stage’ and needs the cooperation of the coachee to succeed.

Coach and Coachee Partnership
Another factor that influences the impact of leadership coaching is the relationship between the coach and the coachee. A good coach-coachee partnership is built on a foundation of mutual trust, confidence, respect, and commitment to accomplish specific objectives. Without these, a coaching program has less chances of producing the desired results. It is for this reason that the selection and matching of coaches with an executive should be done carefully to make sure that the people involved are compatible and comfortable in working together.

Organizational Support
The active involvement and support of the management and organization is crucial to making leadership coaching more effective. When an organization sets realistic expectations and backs the program without focusing on the possible monetary gains alone, the participant, as well as the coach, becomes even more driven to work hard and achieve goals. Those who are prepared to invest on their people often get more than what they pay for. On the contrary, an organization with a negative perception about coaching can hinder the participant from attaining progress and limit the benefits that coaching may deliver.

Coaching Program Structure
There is no ‘one size fits all’ coaching approach applicable to all businesses, which is why it is necessary for coaches to develop a program unique to the client and aligned specifically with their goals. It is vital that both the coach and the client agree to the length and frequency of the program, the delivery of content, feedback reporting, and whether they prefer to benefit from leadership coaching alone or integrate leadership coaching with leadership training to form a comprehensive leadership development program.

By taking these factors into account, an organization can shape better strategies to improve the effectiveness of their coaching initiatives and acquire maximum benefits from their investment.

Author by Line
Debra Wright blogs about a plethora of topics including Leadership Coaching and other fields. Debra considers Rainbow’s Edge as one of the leaders in Executive Leadership Development.

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