Coaching: What do coaches say they sell? What do clients say they buy‪?‬ Human resources management/organizational behavior

    • Business

This business brief addresses the questions of what coaching is and what coaches do, from the perspective of executive coaching as a professional service. The findings are based on a survey of executive coaches and corporate clients at the 1st ESMT Coaching Colloquium in 2009. When posed with the question what do you sell as a coach, executive coach responses highlighted: dedicated time, space and a safe environment, awareness, empathy and challenge, and a promise of a transformation opportunity. When corporate clients were posed with the question of what do you buy from a coach their responses highlighted: awareness and sparring partnership, dedicated time and space, and a happy internal customer. The theme of solutions was also highlighted, although views differed from that of the desire that executive coaches provide solutions, to that of the provision of a solution from an executive coach is undesireable and executive coaches should provide coachees assistance in finding own solutions. From the answers given and despite published definitions of what coaching is, it can be surmised that much confusion remains about what coaching actually is and what it is not.

This business brief addresses the questions of what coaching is and what coaches do, from the perspective of executive coaching as a professional service. The findings are based on a survey of executive coaches and corporate clients at the 1st ESMT Coaching Colloquium in 2009. When posed with the question what do you sell as a coach, executive coach responses highlighted: dedicated time, space and a safe environment, awareness, empathy and challenge, and a promise of a transformation opportunity. When corporate clients were posed with the question of what do you buy from a coach their responses highlighted: awareness and sparring partnership, dedicated time and space, and a happy internal customer. The theme of solutions was also highlighted, although views differed from that of the desire that executive coaches provide solutions, to that of the provision of a solution from an executive coach is undesireable and executive coaches should provide coachees assistance in finding own solutions. From the answers given and despite published definitions of what coaching is, it can be surmised that much confusion remains about what coaching actually is and what it is not.

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