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Professional coaching drives business growth – study

Vast majority of companies with professional coaching program reported higher profitability because coaching unlocks latent sources of productivity and builds confidence among employees in meeting demands at work, according to a study.

Lorraine Parkin, head of tax, Grant Thornton Singapore, who spoke before Grant P&A Grant Thornton’s “Coaching for Growth” cited the 2009 ICF Global Coaching Client Study which showed that 86 percent of companies that underwent coaching were at least able to recover their investments.

The study also noted of increased productivity with 70 percent improvement in work performance, 61 percent improvement in business management, 57 percent improvement in time management, and 51 percent improvement in team effectiveness.

This means that professional coaching maximizes potential and, therefore, unlocks latent sources of productivity, Parkin said.

Employees also become positive people with 80 percent reporting improved self-confidence, 73 percent improved relationship and communication skills and 67 percent improvement in live/work balance.

Building the self-confidence of employees to face challenges is critical in meeting organizational demands, the study said.

Marivic Espano, chairperson and CEO of P&A Grant Thornton, said professional coaching is not yet being practiced in the Philippines, but it is more common among multinational companies doing business here.

Espano said that ICF Philippines is part of the international federation where professional coaches can be tapped and where potential coaches can also register.

“The idea of professional coach is not yet that clear in this country,” said Espano, who shared that some consider a coach as a friend, a priest or a counsellor who can spend time with the coachee and provides answers.

“But a professional coach is different because coaching is more structured and has an agenda to be achieved within a defined period,” she said.

In the case of P&A Grant Thornton, Espano said the organization expressed the need to be coached.

“We feel it was needed to support the people strategy,” she said. They also have a scoreboard to measure the effectiveness of the coaching program.

Parkin also explained that professional coaching is like having a conversation with somebody where the coach is like a sounding board whether face to face, tele-coaching, one-on-one,  triage, group, or peer to peer.

“The least the coach talk, the better,” she said.

Instead, a coach plays the role of an active observant listener, committed to personal development or action plan, respectful and flexible, conducts appreciate enquiry, share experiences and ideas but is not giving instructions. The person being coached is the one driving the relationship.

The benefits of coaching for the individual is it clarifies and prioritizes goals, improves performance, active learning and improves moral.

For the business, it means the company believes in investing in its people, improves motivation, resolves personal issues which may otherwise have affected the business, it will increase retention of workers and improves work performance.

As a result, coaching improves productivity and results for the business.

Parkin said that professional coaching is growing rapidly among businesses. She cited data from ICF Global showing that 99 percent of organizations that underwent coaching were satisfied with the overall experience.


As published in Manila Bulletin, dated 02 September 2017