When to Use Coaching

When to Use Coaching

Sep 03, 2021

Coaching is an integral part of the new performance-led culture of continuous development, with widespread application.

It is a process and a solution that suits our times. It is an effective mechanism for enabling an organisation to meet competitive pressures, plan for succession and bring about change.

When to use coaching in organisations

The CIPD has identified some particular organisational situations where coaching may be particularly appropriate as a development intervention: -


Talent Shortages: When organisations are suffering from significant skills shortages, money may be better spent developing the skills of current employees through interventions like coaching, rather than spending a great deal of money recruiting external candidates.


Small or fast-growing businesses: People who initially set up small business don’t necessary have the skills to manage larger businesses and the growing number of people they need to employ. It’s also unlikely that they can be away from work for extended periods of time for development activities. In this situation, coaching can offer targeted, timely development on identified issues/areas that can be fitted into the individual’s busy schedule.


Coaching can deliver long-term performance improvement: Organisations should only invest in coaching when they think it will deliver significant and long-term improvements in individuals’ performance.


Behaviour must be changed in a short time: Organisations should only invest in coaching if they think that the issues that need to be addressed can be achieved in a relatively short time.


During times of organisational change: Periods of major organisational change can require significant shifts in the behaviour and attitudes of some employees in order to fit in with new structures or cultures. Coaching can help individuals make these necessary changes.


Changes in job role: Coaching can help individuals who are moving to a new job that requires different skills and abilities. Coaching can be a valuable short-term intervention to help people adapt and cope with their role change.


Supporting Expatriates: Coaching can offer support for expatriates who have to adjust to a new culture and country. These people often have very specific requirements and they need immediate support as issues arise.


Developing the skills of ‘valuable’ technical experts: Where certain employees have high levels of specific skills and experience (or critical relationships with contractors/suppliers etc), the organisation might have difficulty replacing its human capital. In this situation, it may be more appropriate to provide coaching to these managers to improve or develop some of their other skills (interpersonal/managerial) so that their careers can progress within the organisation.


Support for future leaders or senior executives: Senior managers or executives being groomed for leadership roles may be hesitant to attend training course, as they may feel that they should already have the skills, expertise etc. In this situation, coaching can be a suitable intervention as it is confidential, personal and ‘safe’ development option where the individual is using an objective, external person to help them with their development.


While coaching can be a very effective development tool, as with any learning intervention, it will be most effective when a genuine need for it is identified, and when it is the best development tool for the specific role.

Benefits of coaching in organisations

Benefits of coaching for the organisation

  • Improve productivity, quality, customer service and shareholder value

  • Can gain increased employee commitment and satisfaction, which can lead to improved retention

  • Demonstrate to employees that an organisation is committed to developing its staff and helping them improve their skills

  • Support employees who’ve been promoted to cope with new responsibilities

  • Help employees to sort out personal issues that might otherwise affect performance at work

  • Gain a satisfactory process for self-development

  • Support other training and development initiatives e.g. reduce ‘leakage’ from training courses

Benefits of coaching for individuals

  • Learn to solve own problems

  • Improve managerial and interpersonal skills

  • Have better relationships with colleagues

  • Learn how to identify and act on development needs

  • Have greater confidence

  • Become more effective, assertive in dealing with people

  • Have a positive impact on performance

  • Have greater self-awareness and gain of new perspectives

  • Acquire new skills and abilities

  • Develop greater adaptability to change

  • Improve work-life balance

  • Reduce stress levels

The most common recipients of coaching are junior and middle managers.

Coaching can be delivered by trained external coaches, specialists internal coaches, line managers, peers, members of the HR department, and others. The survey revealed that most organisations are using a mixture of these groups to deliver their coaching activities.

What to do next

If you would like to know more about how we can support your personal development as a director, facilitate an away day or corporate retreat, or assist with your board's corporate governance, contact us or call +44 (0) 7970 891 343.