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Some previously asked questions, what’s yours?


  • How will we know if coaching has been successful for the individuals and the organisation?

    Apologies for answering a question with a question!  What would be different for the individual and organisation when the coaching is successful?  Please also see answers to questions for practical solutions on calculating your ROI and the process for engaging with a coach, both of these help you to build and capture the value of coaching.

    Clear objectives and goals for outputs and outcomes at the start are key and they can change and be realigned during the coaching relationship if business needs and priorities change.

    Some options for evaluating coaching effectiveness are:

    Individual and or line manager satisfaction with the coaching, employee surveys, the performance of the coach, employee turnover rates and improved retention of key employees, feedback from the coach, achievement of objectives set at the start of the coaching assignment, comparison on pre/post-coaching 360 feedback ratings, impact on business performance indicators and improved personal development plans and ratings.

  • Which models that can used and practical suggests and solutions for calculating your ROI?

    Models include The Kirkpatrick hierarchy, Importance-Performance Analysis, Sherpa methodology and OPP’s calculation on ROI.

    Bringing them all together:

    (1)        For every coaching contract first determine the issue that needs to be resolved and either   estimate the cost of not dealing with the issue or the value of the benefit of dealing with that           issue.  What is the total benefit?

    (2)        Understand what percentage increase in productivity there has been from the coaching,                     this estimate from the coachee(s) and ideally from line manager and subordinates and take             an average score.  Multiply (1) x (2)

    (3)        Make an adjustment for degree in confidence if appropriate based on agreed rationale to         reach net benefit sum

    (4)        Subtract the cost of the coaching contract to determine net benefit sum

    (5)        For ROI take the net benefit sum and divide by the cost of the coaching contract.

    ROI% = Adjusted net benefit (ROI) – (minus) Cost of coaching contract/ (divided by) Cost of                         coaching contract X (multiplied by)100%

  • What and who does a coaching contract involve?

    Answer: It depends on the setup in the individual’s organisation.  It may include be the individual, the coach that set up the arrangement or also to include HR and also the individual’s line manager.  There are different relationships between those involved and each of those relationships needs to be managed for maximum impact.
  • What are the key questions that sponsors of coaching need to ask in the selection of a coach?

    Answer: Does the coach have the appropriate level of coaching experience and relevant business and industry experience for the individual?

    What is the background of the coach?

    Does the coach use independent process to critique and continuously improve their work?  How often does the coach have supervision?

    What are the breadth of tools, techniques, models and the boundaries that the coach uses and works to?

    Does the coach have relevant qualifications, training and personal characteristics?

    Is the coach a member of a professional body and have professional indemnity insurance?

  • What is coaching supervision?

    The process by which a coach with the help of a supervisor, can attend to understanding better both the client system and themselves as part of the client-coach system, and by so doing transform their work and develop their craft.

    (Hawkins and Smith, 2006)

    To this could be added:

     Supervision does this by also attending to transforming the relationship between the supervisor and coach and to the dynamics in the wider contexts in which the work is happening.

    (Hawkins, 2013)

    Coaching supervision has three elements:

    Qualitative: providing an external perspective to ensure quality of practice.

    Developmental: mentoring the coach on their development in the profession.

    Resourcing: Coaching the coach on their coaching practice and work life.

    (Hawkins, 2013)

  • When to use coaching and when to use mentoring?

    Both coaching and mentoring have key roles to play in any talent framework.

    The coaching relationship works to produce a change in the individual which has significant business impact as it is deeply personal to them.

    The mentoring relationship where the more experienced person in the relationship tells the other all he knows based on his experiences of business.

  • Why use and why not use psychometric testing and in-depth psychological profiling?

    Sometimes having specific evidence for behaviour change can be significant in shifting awareness in the individual or a team.  Psychometrics provide a basis of understanding for development needs for both the individual, the line manager and the team.  The tools used can become a language to communicate and a basis to understand each others preferences and needs such as the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI).

    Psychometric testing and profiling can provide an objective assessment base to build on and use from the start of any contact with a prospective employee at the attraction and selection stage and all level of development with the role, the team, the line manager relationship and the organisation as a whole.

    Experienced coaches will use many tools holistically in coaching conversations and depending on the driver for coaching psychometrics may not be necessary.  It simply depends on the agreed outputs and outcomes of the coaching programme.

  • Who and what mechanism is there for the regulation of the coaching and mentoring profession?

    There are four main coaching bodies that regulate the coaching and mentoring profession:

    • The Association for Coaching (AC)
    • The Association for Professional Executive Coaching and Supervision (APECS)
    • The European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC)
    • The International Coach Federation (ICF)

    They each have their own ethical guidelines, definitions, competencies and a process should there be a bread of code and conduct.

  • Why coaching and not mainstream training?

    The major difference between coaching and training is that coaching allows the individual to determine what works for them at a very personal level, the learning then becomes significantly relevant to them, their performance and their business.

    Coaching is key to leadership development because clients can work privately as well as individually with their coach to develop specific leadership competencies in a time a effective way.

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