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  1. 1. Coaching & ROI Case Study on the Return on Investment of Executive Coaching Prepared by: Merrill C. Anderson, Ph.D. MetrixGlobal, LLC November 2, 2001 This executive briefing was excerpted from the final report of the study conducted at a Fortune 500 firm and is intended for the private use of MetrixGlobal clients and professional associates. Please contact Merrill Anderson,, 515 278-0051, for additional information. The Bottom Line: Coaching produced a 529% return on investment and significant intangible benefits to the business. Including the financial benefits from employee retention boosted the overall ROI to 788%. The study provided powerful new insights into how to maximize the business impact from executive coaching. Introduction A Fortune 500 firm launched an innovative leadership development effort that was expected to accelerate the development of next generation leaders. The participants in this effort were drawn mostly from the ranks of middle managers and from many different business units and functional areas. Leadership development activities included group mentoring, individual assessments and development planning, a leadership workshop and work on strategic business projects. Coaching was considered to be a key enabler for this approach to leadership development because the participants could work privately and individually with his or her coach to develop specific leadership competencies. The client organization engaged the Pyramid Resource Group to provide coaching to the leadership development participants. While participants spoke very highly of their experience with coaching it was decided to conduct a formal assessment of the effectiveness and business impact of coaching. It is intended that the results from this study be used to determine: 1. How did coaching add value to the business and what was the return on investment? 2. How could coaching be best leveraged in the future, especially if coaching was to be expanded to other business regions? Data Collection Procedures It was decided that the best way to isolate and capture the effects of coaching on the business was through a questionnaire. This questionnaire had two parts. Part one was completed electronically via email and examined clients initial reaction to coaching, what they learned, how they applied what they learned and captured their initial assessment of business impact. Part two was conducted over the telephone with each respondent and probed more deeply into business impact and the financial return on investment The target population for the survey was 43 leadership development participants. These participants were drawn from two regions: Eastern United States (37) and Mexico (6). These participants Page 1 of 22
  2. 2. Coaching & ROI represented a cross section of the business and included those in sales, operations, technology, finance and marketing. All had been identified as potential leaders and executives. Thirty (30) of 43 leadership development participants returned their surveys for a 70% response rate. Results Coaching was a very effective developmental tool for the leadership development participants, producing financial and intangible benefits for the business. Coaching sessions were rich learning environments that enabled the learning to be applied to a variety of business situations. Decision- making, team performance and the motivation of others were enhanced. Many of these business applications contributed annualized financial benefits. Other applications created significant intangible benefits. Overall, the participants appreciated their coaching experiences and would highly recommend coaching to others. Three-quarters (77%) of the 30 respondents indicated that coaching had significant or very significant impact on at least one of nine business measures. In-depth discussions were conducted over the telephone with each respondent to further explore the business impact of coaching. Sixty percent of the respondents were able to identify specific financial benefits that came as a result of their coaching. Overall, productivity (60% favorable) and employee satisfaction (53%) were cited as the most significantly impacted by the coaching. Respondents defined productivity in this context as relating to their personal or to their work group productivity and half (50%) documented annualized financial benefits. Employee satisfaction was viewed both in terms of the respondents being personally more satisfied as a result of the coaching as well as the being able to increase the employee satisfaction of their team members. The respondents could not quantify this benefit in financial terms. Employee satisfaction, then, was a significant source of intangible benefits. Customer satisfaction (53%) was also a significant source of intangible benefits. The next most frequently cited as being significantly impacted by coaching were work output (30%) and work quality (40%). Twenty percent of the respondents identified financial benefits as a result of increased work output. Many respondents reported improvements in work quality, however, they were not able to quantify these improvements in terms of dollar benefits. Work quality improvements were considered an intangible benefit of the coaching. Program costs were tabulated for all 43 leadership development participants in determining the return on investment. Overall, the coaching process produced a 788% return on investment. Given the client company’s downsizing activities and the general state of the telecommunications industry, the client was reticent to fully factor in the financial benefits from retention. Excluding the benefits from employee retention, a 529% return on investment was produced. While those clients who had customer or people responsibilities produced proportionally greater financial benefits, the realization of benefits to the business was fairly widespread throughout the group involved in this study. Recommendations were made to maximize the business benefits from executive coaching: • Manage the entire coaching process to ensure consistency and quality. Though the content of individual coaching sessions should always be confidential, the coaching Page 2 of 22
  3. 3. Coaching & ROI process itself needs to be managed to ensure that the coaching clients and the coaches are following the appropriate process and leveraging best practices. • Prepare clients in advance for coaching and don't force coaching on anyone. Because coaching remains a relatively new development technique, people may not understand how the coaching process can help them become better business professionals. The sooner they understand the process, the sooner they will see results. • Offer clients the ability to select their coaches. Chemistry is important to build an effective coaching relationship. Provide prospective coaching clients with information about the coaches including biographies, education, coaching credentials, functional expertise, industry experience and other background information. • Provide coaching strong organizational support. Those being coached should receive encouragement and support from their immediate managers. Also, coaching should be conducted in the context of other developmental efforts such as competency development, assessments, mentoring and leadership workshops. • Ensure coaches are grounded in the company’s business and culture. Coaches are more effective when they can identify with and talk about the realities of their client's environment. • Allow each coaching relationship to follow its own path. A major difference between coaching and training is that coaching allows the individual to determine what works best for him or her at a very personal level. Coaches need wide latitude to work with “the whole person” and help each client be more effective as a person as well as to be more effective as a business leader. • Build performance measurement into the coaching process. Evaluation of coaching should be designed into the process from the beginning to better set performance expectations and open up new learning opportunities for making coaching more effective while the coaching is being conducted. For example, coaching can be refocused to deal with issues or to ensure that business priorities will be met. In this way, the evaluation of coaching becomes more than just a measuring stick – it becomes a structured approach to deepen the business value of coaching. About MetrixGlobal, LLC MetrixGlobal LLC is a professional services firm specializing in performance measurement solutions that increase accountability for bottom-line business results. Whether it’s developing a scorecard for a corporate university, determining return on investment for a human resources program or conducting a business impact study on an organization change initiative, MetrixGlobal consultants partner with clients to create powerful measurement methodology. Please visit our web site, to learn more about us Page 3 of 22
  4. 4. Coaching & ROI Hey, Coach How'm I Doin'? Dec 1, 2003 12:00 PM , VICTORIA JAMES CONNIE LaMOTTA It takes good players to make a winning football team: reliable quarterbacks, sure-handed receivers, quick defensive players and steady kickers. But some argue that all that talent isn't enough; it's the coach who pulls it all together. The coach understands each player's shortcomings and inspires them to do their best. But coaches aren't just for athletes anymore. “A coach may be the guardian angel you need to rev up your career,” says Money magazine. Industry Week enthuses, “The benefits of coaching appear to win over even the most cynical clients within just a few weeks.” Years ago, coaches were brought into an organization to help a “problem” manager improve performance. In the late 1990s, it became a perk for senior managers. Today, coaching is for all levels of employees in the workplace and for achieving other life goals. Coaching is often described as a collaborative effort or partnership that builds skills and capacities for effective working relationships. There are many types of coaching experiences, as noted by the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) in Greensboro, NC: • Executive coaches work with the leaders of an organization. Last year Fortune magazine published an article titled “Executive Coaching — With Returns a CFO Could Love.” The piece noted that, “asked for a conservative estimate of the monetary payoff from the coaching they got, these managers described an average return of more than $100,000, or about six times what the coaching had cost their company.” Executive coaching is generally paid for by the organization and is frequently offered to the CEO and senior management team. • Business coaches work with managers on a specific developmental goal. They are used, for example, when managers are faced with a significant increase in the scope of their responsibility or if traditional managers want to move to a less dominant, direct leadership style. John Russell, managing director of Harley-Davidson Europe Ltd., says: “I never cease to be amazed at the power of the coaching process to draw out the skills or talent that was previously hidden within an individual, and which invariably finds a way to solve a problem previously thought unsolvable.” Business coaching is either done by an internal team or by an external group. Each has its benefits and drawbacks. Generally, internal coaches have a better understanding of the specific culture and the organization, according to Lynne DeLay, CCL's manager in Europe. The downside is that the internal coach sometimes has blind spots. “Coaches hired from outside the organization have the advantage of offering an external perspective. They can sometimes be more useful in… challenging the status quo,” DeLay remarked in CCL's e-newsletter. • Career coaches help with such issues as business acumen, leadership and organizational abilities, social and communication skills, analytical and innovative thinking capacities, career Page 4 of 22
  5. 5. Coaching & ROI guidance, developing executive presence, corporate networking support, work/home balance and prioritization. A.R., a senior software engineer, says about her coaching experience, “Back in January I had no idea where I was going with my career and my outlook was pretty bleak. I felt like I had awakened and found myself somewhere I didn't want to be. My coach helped me look at these issues in a systematic way. When I wasn't sure what direction to start in, she gave me many options and asked me questions until the direction became clear. This process broke me out of my old habits and made me grow. My coach helped me empower myself.” She is now in a new job consistent with her inner vision for herself. • Life coaches assist with relationship issues involving family, friends and significant others, or with physical and wellness issues, self-confidence and self-esteem, communication skills, intended achievements or financial guidance. Life coaching helps people get from where they are in their life to where they want to be. It is the life coach's job to motivate people to achieve their desires by breaking down the barriers they tend to impose on themselves. Mary Anne Fisher, principal of executive coaching consultancy Strategies for Life and Work, asks probing questions designed to draw out answers the clients are unaware they already have, and to bring new possibilities to light. In a study by the International Coach Federation, the following outcomes attributed to coaching were reported by more than 200 coaching clients: a higher level of self-awareness, smarter goal-setting, a more balanced life, lower stress levels, self-discovery, more self-confidence, improvement in quality of life, enhanced communication skills, project completion, health or fitness improvement, better relationship with others, increased energy, more fun, more income and more free time. How do you make the decision about whether a coach is for you? All the typical coaching materials caution you to recognize that coaching doesn't deal with counseling or therapy. Coaching deals with the here and now and is oriented toward your future achievements, whereas therapy tends to deal with the past and its barriers to creating a satisfying present. Here are some questions that indicate it may be time to search for a coach: • Are you looking to change your life? • Are you interested in more satisfying communication with others? • Are you ready to move from thinking about problems to taking positive action toward solutions? • Do you want increased fulfillment and have a desire to understand the meaning of your life? • Would you like to gain better clarity and focus about what you want to achieve? • Did you ever wish you could shift from reacting to events to being proactive? • Would you like to set your priorities and get some support in maintaining them so that you have time to nurture yourself and others you care for? Page 5 of 22
  6. 6. Coaching & ROI If so, it's time to ask yourself if you're in the game or just on the sidelines. And a coach might be just the ticket to help you set up that big touchdown. By Victoria James with Connie LaMotta Victoria James is president of Victoria James Executive Search Inc., Stamford, CT. Connie LaMotta is president of Workplace Strategies Associates, Upper Nyack, NY. The Coaching Wave: Are You in the Game? Coaching for personal and executive growth, not the athletic variety, has generated substantial momentum in the last five years as a major force in human development. The HR profession, with some notable exceptions, is often not actively involved and may be missing a major new trend. For most people, the word “coaching” evokes images of sports teams and middle-aged men screaming from the sidelines. However, coaching in the corporate setting, where a professional coach provides one-on-one assistance to help a manager or executive achieve business and personal goals, is becoming an increasingly important management tool. As evidence that coaching is coming of age in the corporate setting, Fortune magazine devoted seven pages to the topic in its February 21, 2000, issue; and Corporate Coach U International, Inc., drew representatives from many well-known companies to its first conference for employers and coaches in March 2000. In addition, the International Coaches Federation (ICF), the two-year old nonprofit professional association for coaches, estimates that the number of people entering the field has doubled each of the past three years. Currently, the ICF has approximately 2,400 members and estimates there are well over 10,000 full- and part-time coaches. The picture that emerges, however, is that top executives and operating managers usually are the ones taking the initiative to find their own coaches. In many organizations using coaches, HR is often being left out of the loop when it should be a natural advocate and strategic partner. As an HR practitioner, therefore, you need to understand the issues and the driving forces behind the coaching trend so that you won’t be left out of the decision making. What is Coaching? Coaching can be defined and practiced in many different ways. It is not consulting or therapy, but many coaches are consultants or industrial psychologists. HR Matters contributing editor, Lanny Blake, an HR consultant and executive coach, describes coaching as “guided self- discovery.” In most cases, a coach collaborates with an individual client in a custom program to help the client develop to full potential, both professionally and personally. According to the ICF, most coaches work with clients to develop their natural strengths and often focus on achieving goals related to business, career, finance, health, and relationships. For example, an Page 6 of 22
  7. 7. Coaching & ROI executive may engage a coach to help master new job responsibilities or to facilitate an internal career transition. A coaching program normally identifies values and strengths, goals, changes needed, priorities, and action steps, and then provides continuing guidance and follow-up to direct progress and celebrate milestones. In the corporate setting, coaching generally relates to accomplishing organizational goals but also naturally involves personal issues as part of the process. For example, a manager who wants to become better at setting goals and motivating employees may first have to learn to become more assertive and communicate better. There are two types of corporate coaching: external, which involves the use of outside practitioners, and internal, which involves the use of specially trained in-house staff. Whether external or internal, it is normally conducted in a one-to-one, customized fashion, but can be tailored to groups. Telephone sessions are the normal mode for service delivery of external coaching, although face-to-face meetings may be used in high-level executive coaching, particularly in the initial stages. The length of a coaching assignment varies from a few months to eighteen months and longer. Coaching sessions generally range from half an hour a week to an hour or two at varying intervals. Coaching, like any personal service, is not inexpensive. Fees for external coaching in the noncorporate setting are in the $200 to $400 range per month. Fees for outside corporate coaches are more likely to be at least $1,000 per month and can range substantially higher, depending on the coach’s expertise and the client’s position and needs. Why Coaching Now? The coaching phenomenon appears to have strong forces propelling the need for its services. The strongest force is the rapid and accelerating rate of change occurring in most people’s business and personal lives. The industrial economy of the last century, which focused on the production of tangible goods, has been replaced by the new “knowledge economy,” which emphasizes learning, creativity, collaboration, and flexibility - skills that most workers are not taught. In addition, new technology (like the Internet) is forcing companies to rethink their business strategies and is also allowing, and even requiring, workers to be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As a result, traditional business relationships and “comfort zones” are being disrupted with the result that symptoms of stress, burnout, and imbalance are rampant not only in the workplace, but also in employees’ personal lives. All of these forces place tremendous pressures on workers at every level to establish focus, clarity, and balance in order to function and grow. Coaching has proven to be a powerful tool to achieve these ends, for both the individual and employer, because it teaches people to identify their strengths, to set goals and achieve them, to be flexible, and to be self-reliant. Why HR Is Not a Player, but Should Be To date, most of the use of coaches in the corporate arena has involved external coaches. Typically, a top executive or manager recognizes a personal need to accelerate change or growth and contracts directly with an external coach to facilitate the process. Unfortunately, HR often is left out of this loop because it is viewed primarily as an administrative function or, worse, as one that will complicate the process. In fact, the Fortune article describes coaching as Page 7 of 22
  8. 8. Coaching & ROI “one of the hottest things in human resources, except that it doesn’t usually come out of human resources.” As a result of this perception, HR may be missing an opportunity to become a strategic partner. There is a growing need in organizations that embrace coaching to unify the process, coordinate and monitor performance standards (credentials, outcome measurements, feedback, etc.), and control costs. In other words, HR has an opportunity to exert strategic leadership and be proactive as a champion of coaching as a developmental tool. Once HR chooses to become a partner in corporate coaching, there are still several hurdles to overcome to successfully implement the program. First, as one internal coach at a large pharmaceutical company aptly put it, for any coaching program to work, the coach’s stature and credibility must be impeccable and the coach must be free from internal politics and economic pressure. This standard is difficult for an external coach to meet but is even tougher for an internal one, especially if the client to be coached is in a senior position in the organization. Second, confidentiality is critical to any coaching relationship, and HR’s ability to maintain it may legitimately be suspect because of its role in employment decisions. Therefore, HR has a major challenge in building a wall between its employment role and the coaching function. Finally, a good coach must be able and willing to identify “blind spots,” make unpopular recommendations, and resist the temptation to be politically correct. HR Should Take a Stand to Get Involved The coaching trend and the driving forces behind it appear to have sustaining power. T9ikherefore, HR professionals need to assess whether coaching should have a role in their organizations. A first step is to take inventory and see if any top executives or operating managers currently are using coaches or feel there is a need. The next step is to access the growing body of information available on coaching. The Internet is a rich source for this, and your first stop ought to be the International Coach Federation Web site (see “For additional information on Coaching,” below). As you assess the applicability of coaching for your own organization, weigh carefully the issues raised above and the relative roles and merits of external and internal coaching. To this add a final observation: Most coaches seem to radiate an almost evangelical commitment and passion for helping people develop their full potential. This kind of enthusiasm and energy is a scarce resource in today’s environment and one you should consider embracing. For additional information on Coaching: Corporate Coach U International, P.O. Box 881595, Steamboat Springs, CO 80488-1595; 888- 391-2740; and Web site, International Coach Federation, 1444 I Street, NW, Suite 700, Washington, D.C. 20005; 888-423- 3131. Its Web site,, includes a referral listing for coach members and lists thirteen coach training schools. The organization also has developed a professional accreditation program. Page 8 of 22
  9. 9. Coaching & ROI Management Training and Executive Coaching: A High Return on Investment (ROI) Combination An original Firstbiz article by Joseph Eng One of the most widely held notions in business is the value of management training. Every dollar invested in management training should yield a healthy return on investment. Sadly, this has not been the case for many companies large and small. A more common experience has been little or nothing to show for the $2500-$5000 invested to train just one manager. Often all that remains is an impressive looking binder of materials and the memory of all the work that stacked up during training. Why? With the wealth of seminars with name speakers you wonder why so many great ideas never become a reality in Corporate America. Seminars often provide great sources for excellent ideas, materials, and enthusiasm. However, they do not produce the two things most needed for on-the-job results - o Tailoring ideas to the organization's culture, processes, and people o Providing on-going mentoring to make new behaviors a way of life. A better way? Yes there is. Management training combined with the emerging practice of Executive Coaching delivers impressive bottom-line results. A recent survey measuring Return on Investment (ROI) of 100 managers and executives of Fortune 1000 companies who received customized Executive Coaching found Coaching returned an average of six times its cost. Among specific benefits from Coaching include improvement in: o Leadership effectiveness o Bottom-line profitability o Organizational strength o Top-line sales o Retaining executives who receive coaching o Cost reductions o Quality of products and service o Overall Productivity Among benefits to Coached managers and executives are improved: o Leadership skills o Conflict resolution techniques o Working relationships with employees o Job satisfaction Page 9 of 22
  10. 10. Coaching & ROI o Work and life balance o Working relationships with peers o Time management o Organizational commitment o Relationships with clients A recent study cited in the prestigious Public Personnel Management Journal found a typical management training program increased a manager's productivity a respectable 22%, but when combined with 8- weeks of intensive Executive Coaching, the manager's productivity exploded to more than 85%! Coaching works, but it does take time, energy and a personal investment by the Coached individual. What exactly is Executive Coaching? The field of Coaching is relatively new. It finds its roots in diverse fields such as: business management, human resources, organization development, sports psychology, peak performance training, adult learning, and clinical psychology. According to the National Association of Business Coaches, Coaching is a relationship between the Coach and a willing individual inside or outside of an organization. That relationship is built on respect, safety, challenge and accountability. Its purpose is to motivate the Coached individual to be "his/her absolute best and to achieve extraordinary results in performance and in living." (from the NABC Registered Internal Corporate Coach Manual™) Small Business Coaches generally work with entrepreneurs, small business owners and their management teams in developing a vision and building a more profitable and efficient business. Midsize Business Coaches work with executives, managers, and owners of companies who have grown to a point where stronger leadership focus is needed as the company struggles to overcome normal growth challenges. Corporate Coaches often work within larger organizations to increase manager and executive productivity, strengthen leadership abilities and achieve peak performance. Executive Coaches usually specialize in working with mid- to upper- level executives and owners of companies who desire to accomplish corporate or personal goals more effectively and efficiently. What kind of professionals typically use executive coaching? All kinds--from front line managers to top executives; from home business owners to doctors and lawyers. Coaches can be effective in all the major industries including: financial services, technology, manufacturing, publishing, airlines, consulting, hospitality, professional services, hospitals, oil, and many more. Page 10 of 22
  11. 11. Coaching & ROI Why do individuals and companies work with coaches? There are a wide variety of reasons why individuals and companies work with coaches. Coaching can help an individual: o Better focus on vision, mission and personal integrity o Eliminate the blocks that constrain peak performance o Clearly define vision and strategy to effectively achieve goals o Improve leadership skills o Live life with purpose, passion and integrity o Maximize strengths and abilities o Learn to make more money with less effort o Cope with conflict in a healthy and beneficial way o Create a business that complements and enhances one's quality of life o Rapidly accelerates career growth o Achieve a dynamic balance between one's personal and professional life o Focus energy in the right direction o Feel confident in making the right decisions for self, business and family o Create sustainable change in one's life and work How does it actually work? How does a Coach do this? A client interacts with his/her Coach once a week on the phone or in person. The vast majority of clients enjoy the convenience of phone-coaching sessions. Clients bring an agenda into each session, and their Coach helps them examine their issues and helps them create a plan to reach goal-oriented solutions. Since Coaches have ongoing personal contact with their client, they are capable of helping them continually set higher standards. What should you look for when choosing a coach? Chemistry. There must be a good chemistry between client and Coach. It also is important to find a coach one trusts and respects and who has a successful track record. For those who are combining management training with Coaching, the Coach needs strong management development skills. Often actual management experience is desirable. How much does it cost to work with an Executive Coach? Many Coaches offer a "test drive" before requiring a commitment. Monthly fees for executive Coaching range from $1,000 to $3,000 for a weekly coaching session. While Coaching generally takes place either in person or over the phone, some Coaches use fax, email, and even chat rooms to accommodate schedules of busy executives. Practitioners report that in dealing with out of state clients they often find no decrease in effectiveness using electronic versus face- to-face communications. New technology now makes voice and image coaching possible via computers with small digital cameras. Page 11 of 22
  12. 12. Coaching & ROI How long is the typical coaching engagement? The initial phase of a Coaching relationship usually lasts at least 3 months. Meeting on a weekly basis this gives 12-13 opportunities to interact and accomplish meaningful goals. A biweekly schedule translates into a six-month engagement. Some Coaching firms report the majority of clients work with them weekly for an average of 6-8 months, Some engagements last as long as two years. How is coaching different from consulting or counseling? Coaching has become a very hot topic in the last 3-5 years. Now it seems like everyone is calling themselves a "Coach." Good Coaches, however, understand the differences between coaching, consulting and counseling. Most counseling is centered on healing mental and psychological issues. Generally the patient comes into the counseling center or hospital to be treated for his/her "problem." The psychologist or therapist generally diagnoses the patient and prescribes a treatment plan. In Coaching there is no diagnosis; no "doctor-patient" relationship. The coaching relationship is founded upon the belief that Coaching is a partnership of equals. A coach does not prescribe a treatment plan, Instead, client and Coach develop a plan together. The solution as defined in Coaching comes not from delving into the past but focusing on the future. Great Coaching helps one maximize strengths while developing growth areas. Most consulting relationships are also based on the "expert-student" model. The consultant is the expert. The client is the student. Consulting is generally all about having the right answers. Coaching is all about asking the right questions. In Coaching, the Coach is not viewed so much as the expert, but as a partner. The Client is the expert on his/her life and business. The Coach will focus on learning about the client and will solve problems more effectively and efficiently by asking the right questions. How to Lay the Foundation for a Successful Coaching Experience Since ROI (Return on Investment) is an important consideration to justify an investment in time and money for Coaching, it's best to begin by defining clear business goals to improve profitability. Such goals might include: renegotiating better terms with vendors; improving cash flow by improving accounts receivable collection rates; increasing inventory turns; reducing scrap, or improving first-run quality. Often there are many such "low hanging fruit" projects that were never started or never finished. Accomplishing just a few of these goals during the coaching process provides ample return on investment. Look for a return of at least 300% over 12 months. In subsequent meetings develop realistic action plans to implement goals over a 3-6 month period. Action plans should break the tasks into manageable two-week mini goals that are challenging but not overwhelming. Review progress with your Coach at each session. He/she is your accountability partner. This alone is a powerful force for accomplishing goals. This process provides the time, opportunity and laboratory environment to work through a variety of technical, organizational and people issues related to goal achievement. Page 12 of 22
  13. 13. Coaching & ROI Making it Happen Help yourself find the time to give to this effort. A key issue is time management. Effective time management skills are essential to help you accomplish new tasks and focus your priorities. This is where Coaching can provide the edge that often makes the difference between success and failure. Focus on your passion. Look for ways to recognize and feel your growing success. Change is often painful, frightening and confusing. Here is where you and your Coach work on personal growth skills that define success. At the end of a successful Coaching/ management training experience two positive outcomes occur: o You will see a solid ROI as a result of accomplishing your goals. o You will have grown in maturity and confidence in both management and life skills. Winning the game Companies hiring `coaches' for their executives Baltimore Business Journal - June 30, 2000 by Adam Katz-Stone Contributing Writer As a rising star at Oracle Corp., Kim Smith needed help. "I was a young consultant moving up in my career at a rapid pace, yet there is no book you can read that really tells you what to do," she said. "I was looking for mentoring and coaching, both on the personal side and primarily on the professional side." In the world of executive coaching, Smith was the exception to the rule: a success who only wanted to do things better. Executive coaches say the folks they see most often are those who ride the bumpy road. "When someone is already successful, the companies generally will be less likely to spend the dollars on added training, because they don't see the issue there," said Ellen Burke, senior vice president and general manager with Lee Hecht Harrison in Columbia, which offers executive coaching in addition to a range of other career services. Page 13 of 22
  14. 14. Coaching & ROI Such coaching is becoming a popular tool for companies that are trying to help executives perform at a higher level. "There's a huge gap between what managers have been taught and what they are being asked to do," said Alan Dobzinski, a principal with the Coach Development Group in Ellicott City. "Coaching is the most guaranteed method we know ever devised to improve their productivity of their department or their organization.'' Dobzinski, who is affiliated with Coach U, (, a national coaching network, said companies are developing employees through either a one-on-one or group approach. He's doing work for Pizza Hut, Johns Hopkins University and Marriott Corp. He and other coaches say they see all types of issues pop up in management these days. Coaches typically see the people who are having problems. These may be recently promoted supervisors who need help adjusting to their new roles, Burke said, or they may be employees who "need to develop more effective behaviors or resolve specific issues that may be interfering with their ability to be successful managers." Managers who are insensitive to gender or ethnicity issues, or whose leadership style frustrates or disappoints subordinates and higher-ups -- these folks clearly need some help. There are plenty of them out there, too. A 12-year study by the Hagberg Consulting Group in New York, for instance, found that a quarter of executives at high-technology companies are ineffective managers who lack the people skills to inspire and develop a cohesive team. It's a circumstance Skip Pettit has seen repeatedly. "An organization will have this valued employee who they have invested a lot of time and money in, and they want to know is this person salvageable or if this person is just a lawsuit waiting to happen," he said. Page 14 of 22
  15. 15. Coaching & ROI As president of the eight-year-old International Training Consortium in Rockville, Pettit oversees some 100 consultants and offers a range of coaching programs. He typically gets $1,500 a day for one-on-one training. A former Army first sergeant, Pettit can sympathize with managers who have trouble wearing their authority with grace and tact. In the military, "we would say jump and people will jump. But in the work world today it is no longer, `You work for me, do what I say.' Now the question is: How can I help you be successful so that we can be successful together?" he said. Pettit's approach to these issues is essentially behavioral. His programs give people the resources to act differently in everyday situations. "A hammer is a wonderful tool. Nothing beats a nail better than a hammer. But if you go home tonight and take a hammer to your VCR, you are going to have limited results," he explained. "You need to have a number of tools in your toolkit, and we try to help get those new tools into people's hands." Other executive coaches take a more systemic approach, working almost as therapists to help clients examine and hopefully alter deep-rooted behavioral patterns. A good example is Mickie Crimone, who has operated her one-woman shop The Leader's Edge in Potomac for five years. Crimone is the coach who helped Kim Smith adjust to her changing role at Oracle a few years back. A psychiatric nurse by training, she said that workplace problems and domestic strife share much in common. "To the degree that the person at the top is clear and visionary, that leads to success," she said. "That is true whether you are talking about a parent or talking about a president." Likewise, "corporations can get wedded to `we have always done it this way' in the same way families get wedded to `we don't talk to Aunt Susie.' In a corporation this mean it is always the sales division that has a problem, or always this other section that cannot get the information that it needs." Page 15 of 22
  16. 16. Coaching & ROI Crimone urges clients to first become aware of themselves and their surroundings. She teaches them to step back and take an objective view of the corporate culture and of their own role within that system. In this effort, she often sounds more like a couple's counselor than a corporate coach "You can't control those around you, but you can control how you operate. You can change what you do, and you can change your responses. The more you do that, the more you act from a mature thinking stance, the better you will be able to function," she said. In work as in life, she said, "you can keep the lungs breathing, you can keep the heart pumping, but you really don't function unless the head is in charge." Smith was turned off at first by this deeply personal approach, but in the end she became a believer. "I had always been reticent to do that. I said business is business, and I keep my professional and personal lives separate," said Smith, an Arlington, Va., resident who is presently on leave from Oracle and pursuing personal interests. By breaking down that wall and coming to view her work relationships as meaningful bonds, she found herself able to function more effectively in the office. "Your manager is a person just like you, and so are your peers," she said. "All the way up the chain, people above you have not just organizational goals, but also personal goals, and getting to know those people as people helps tremendously." A note of caution: While executive coaching can help managers be more productive and organizations more effective, one needs to beware of unintended consequences. Burke for example gets $20,000 to $25,000 for a 12-month coaching commitment, and $12,000 to $15,000 for a six-month program. (These consist of an average of two in-person meetings a month and numerous phone calls.) She said that despite the weighty expense, there is no guarantee that the end result will be an improved executive. In fact, the program may result in no executive at all. Page 16 of 22
  17. 17. Coaching & ROI "This is a major change process the person is going through, and when people go through this kind of process, they may decide on their own to leave an organization," Burke said. "Sometimes when there is a performance issue, for example, it is because that person is not a good match for that job. Companies need to be aware of this possibility going in." The ROI of Leadership Coaching: Three Key Insights for Value Creation Leadership coaching has emerged in recent years as a popular—and powerful—way to develop leadership skills. ROI studies conducted by MetrixGlobal, LLC, over the past four years clearly demonstrate that leadership coaching consistently delivers business value. The ROIs have generally been in the range of 500% to 700%. This being said, what have we really learned about how coaching delivers value? There are three key insights that we have drawn from the data: 1. Leaders who were coached developed according to a fundamental evolutionary process. We describe this process in the book Coaching That Counts as a four-quadrant model. These quadrants are described from the perspective of the leader, or client, being coached. a. The first quadrant involves the client finding focus and creating the space to make change. Often there is some proximate issue that the client feels must be addressed. Getting more organized to focus on strategically important issues, and overcoming dysfunctional habits and behaviors are some examples of first quadrant learning. b. The second quadrant involves relationships. Building stronger partnerships or strengthening peer relationships through more effective collaboration could be examples of Quadrant Two coaching goals. c. In the third quadrant, clients create alignment between intentions and actions. With the help of the coach, they align who they are with what they do. The focus of the client’s outward actions is increasingly strategic, as larger projects, such as managing change, are taken on. d. The fourth quadrant is characterized by clients taking bold and original action to make positive change in their organizations. This may include launching a new product line or restructuring a department. 2. As leaders transformed themselves, they created strategic value for the organization. We examined how each leader took actions as a result of their coaching and the impact that these actions had in the organization. Page 17 of 22
  18. 18. Coaching & ROI a. 58% of those clients whose coaching experience was limited to working on the more tactical issues in Quadrant One reported that their coaching significantly impacted the business. In contrast, 100% of those whose coaching progressed to work on more strategic issues in Quadrant Four reported making a significant impact on the business. b. 70% of all monetary benefits attributed directly to the coaching leaders received came from those leaders who worked on the more strategic issues in Quadrants Three and Four. The remaining 30% of the monetary benefits came from those clients working on issues related to Quadrants One and Two. c. In looking at the sources of benefits, clients in Quadrant One tended to cite personal productivity, while clients in Quadrant Four cited examples such as increased net revenue from launching a new product line. From a strategic perspective, launching a new product line is far greater than gaining increases in personal productivity. Leaders transform themselves as they progress through the four quadrants. According to our research, their impact on the organization increases accordingly. 3. Insight—and deepening levels of insight—is the key enabler for transformational change. Unfortunately, only 15% of all leaders progressed through all four quadrants. There were a variety of reasons why the other 85% did not make it to Quadrant Four: the leader’s lack of will or understanding that this level of transformational change was possible or desirable, lack of time or budget to pursue coaching sufficiently, or the skill level of the coach. However, the key enabler for the progressive development of the leader was insight, specifically, how the coach and leader together created deeper and deeper levels of insight. The leader takes actions based on new insights. The coach helps the leader explore the outcomes of these actions, which then creates a new platform—and new questions—for even deeper insights to be created. We have identified four levels of insight, each of which is associated with one of the four quadrants: a. Reflective insight, Quadrant One, opens up the possibilities for change. b. Emotional insight, Quadrant Two, comes from learning how to discern and decipher the emotional context of situations. c. Intuitive insight, Quadrant Three, affords the leader the opportunities to tap into their own intuitive knowing. d. Inspirational insight, Quadrant Four, enables the leader to act with the faith and courage to achieve major accomplishments. The good news is that leaders and coaches can acquire both the insightful capabilities and the understanding of how to achieve transformational change. The four-quadrant model suggests a developmental process that leaders can utilize. Both coaches and leaders can employ the four levels of insight to achieve transformational change. And, as our work clearly shows, this transformational change will lead to strategic value for the organization. What can coaches do to structure their coaching engagement and make their coaching count? Here are some ideas: 1. Use the four quadrants as stepping stones to structure the coaching relationship. For example, be sure that the client has done the appropriate work with finding focus (Quadrant One) before exploring the emotional context of the client’s situation (Quadrant Two). Page 18 of 22
  19. 19. Coaching & ROI 2. Be sure to set objectives for coaching that relate to Quadrant Three. So often, we have observed coaching relationships that set their sights too low (e.g., Quadrant One). Begin with Quadrant One or Two objectives, however, at the appropriate point in the relationship, reset the objectives to dig deeper into Quadrant Three issues. 3. Occasionally probe for specific examples of application and explore potential impact on the business. When giving feedback to coaches on what their clients have accomplished, they are often (pleasantly) surprised at how seemingly little ideas or suggested actions that came up during coaching have had a huge impact on the organization. Coaches can explore with their clients the business impact of their actions as part of the coaching process. In fact, we find that exploring business impact is an important aspect of developing insights. Merrill C. Anderson, PhD, is a business consulting executive, author and educator with more than 20 years of experience improving the performance of people and organizations. Dr. Anderson is currently the chief executive officer of Cylient, a professional services firm that offers coaching-based leadership development, change management and MetrixGlobal™ evaluation services. He has more than 70 professional publications and speeches to his credit including his latest books Coaching That Counts and Bottom-Line Organization Development. Dr. Anderson was recognized as the 2003 ASTD ROI Practitioner of the Year, and his work with clients has been recognized as an international best practice by numerous professional industry groups. Dr. Anderson may be reached at Dianna Anderson, MCC, is the vice president of leadership coaching for Cylient. She has more than 15 years of experience as a professional coach and management consultant, creating transformational change for individuals and organizations. Dianna is the co-author of Coaching That Counts. She was an adjunct professor for the School of Education at Drake University, where she taught graduate level courses on coaching. Dianna was one of the first graduates of Coach U and is a Master Certified Coach through the International Coach Federation (ICF). She received her MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business in Canada. Dianna may be reached at Executive Coaching Yields Return of Almost Six Times its Cost! Author: Work / Life Solutions, Inc. Date: 01/04/2001 Manchester Inc., the global leader in customized executive coaching programs, has released the results of a study that quantifies the business impact of executive coaching. The study includes data on executive behavior change, organizational improvements achieved, and the return on investment (ROI) from Manchester's customized, comprehensive executive coaching programs. The study included 100 executives, mostly from Fortune 1000 companies, who received coaching from Manchester. Manchester Inc. is a part of Prolianz, the professional services division of Modis Professional Services Inc. (NYSE:MPS) of Jacksonville, Florida. Companies that provided coaching through Manchester to their executives realized improvements in productivity, quality, organizational strength, customer service, and shareholder value. They received Page 19 of 22
  20. 20. Coaching & ROI fewer customer complaints, and were more likely to retain executives who had been coached. In addition, a company's investment in providing coaching to its executives realized an average return on investment (ROI) of almost six times the cost of the coaching. Manchester conducted what is believed to be the first major study to quantify the business impact of executive coaching. Half of the executives in the study held positions of vice president or higher (including division president, general manager, chief executive officer, chief financial officer, chief information officer, partner, principal, and practice leader). Almost six out of 10 (57%) executives who received coaching were ages 40 to 49, and one-third earned $200,000 or more per year. The coaching programs that executives participated in were a mix of both change-oriented coaching - which is aimed at changing certain behaviors or skills - and growth-oriented coaching - which is aimed at sharpening performance. The coaching programs typically lasted from six months to one year. Among the results of the study: Manchester's coaching programs delivered an average return on investment of 5.7 times the initial investment in a typical executive coaching assignment - or a return of more than $100,000 - according to executives who estimated the monetary value of the results achieved through coaching. Among the benefits to companies that provided coaching to executives were improvements in: Productivity (reported by 53% of executives) Quality (48%) Organizational strength (48%) Customer service (39%) Reducing customer complaints (34%) Retaining executives who received coaching (32%) Cost reductions (23%) Bottom-line profitability (22%) Among the benefits to executives who received coaching were improved: Working relationships with direct reports (reported by 77% of executives) Working relationships with immediate supervisors (71%) Teamwork (67%) Working relationships with peers (63%) Job satisfaction (61%) Conflict reduction (52%) Organizational commitment (44%) Working relationships with clients (37%) Manchester's executive coaching programs focus on helping executives adjust to new organizational realities and not just survive, but thrive. Manchester's tailored approach is a collaborative process that includes a pre-coaching needs assessment to set clear objectives and a complete, valid - and reliable - assessment protocol. Considerable emphasis is placed on both action planning and achieving measurable results linked to identified business objectives. Manchester's executive coaches typically hold Ph.D. or MBA degrees and have at least 20 years experience as organizational development practitioners or line managers. All coaches have graduated from standardized internal coaching that focuses on principles of assessment and intervention in executive coaching practice, and have gone through an extensive certification process. Page 20 of 22
  21. 21. Coaching & ROI Corporate Learning Strategies Daniel R. Tobin, Ph.D. The Difficulty of ROI About four in 10 respondents to the AMA/Institute for Corporate Productivity Coaching Survey 2008 agreed or strongly agreed that two other reasons were behind the termination of coaching assignments: the inability of certain employees to change (42%) and the difficulty of measuring return on investment (ROI) (39%). Resistance to change is, of course, relatively common in organizations and is already well-documented in change-management literature. But the subject of the ROI of coaching is less well understood and continues to be a subject of debate in the coaching literature. It’s interesting to note that, out of the various factors causing the termination of coaching arrangements, the strongest negative correlation was associated with the notion that the ROI of coaching is not easily measurable. That is, the more respondents said that coaching was terminated because of difficulty in measuring ROI, the less likely they were to report overall success in coaching at their company. This suggests there might be a significant upside to being able to measure the ROI in organizations. So far, however, the literature indicates that relatively few organizations have formal procedures in place to measure coaching’s success. McCormick (2007) polled 500 readers of Personnel Today and reports that 67% of respondents say their organizations don’t measure coaching ROI and an additional 20% say they simply don’t know if coaching outcomes are measured. Furthermore, not only are formal measurement systems not yet in place, many companies (some of which have used executive coaches for years) aren’t even sure what they would measure if they had to. In fact, 44% of respondents in McCormick’s study (2007) believe it is impossible to measure the ROI of coaching at all, and, if their organizations must measure it, then anecdotal evidence of its effectiveness is all that’s possible. Sherman and Freas (2004) explain why this thinking is popular. “Unlike most business processes, which tend to reduce information to abstractions, executive coaching engages people in customized ways that acknowledge and honor their individuality. It helps people know themselves better, live more consciously and contribute more richly. The essentially human nature of coaching is what makes it work—and also what makes it nearly impossible to quantify.” That said, some experts believe that organizations are making progress in the area of quantifying the results of coaching. While measuring the “feel good” factor may be the easiest method to administer and tabulate, there is little evidence that this leads to changed behavior and improvements in the bottom line (Sparrow, 2006). Page 21 of 22
  22. 22. Coaching & ROI As a result, more sophisticated measurement techniques are gaining ground. Typically, these methods involve estimating the impact of coaching on at least one business area (such as the total value of resolving an issue). Both the financial and non-monetary benefits must be identified and estimated. Another way to track the benefits (or lack thereof) associated with coaching is through the use of assessments. Assessments conducted at the beginning of a coaching program help focus the goal-setting process, and readministering the same assessment Three-hundred-and-sixty-degree feedback, for example, has become almost synonymous with coaching programs. Assessments that compare self-perceptions and the perceptions of others can provide invaluable information for the employee who needs a better understanding of how his or her behavior affects others (Nowack, 2007). Other assessments—such as ones that measure personality, interests, values, and health—can also be used. The critical lesson for coaches is to administer these assessments in a pre- and post-test format. Otherwise, it is impossible to tease out whether it was coaching or some other factor that was responsible for the assessment scores. Section taken from American Management Association’s Report: Coaching: A Global Study of Successful Practices. Current Trends and Future Possibilities 2008-2018. Full study (79 pages) is available at Page 22 of 22