ATD Research: Organizations Are Turning to Formal Coaching for Employee Development

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About 30 percent of organizations without a formal coaching program plan to implement one in the next two years.

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Formal coaching is gaining in popularity.

Formal coaching is gaining in popularity. Although only 38 percent of respondents have a formal coaching program in place, 30 percent of respondent organizations that do not currently, plan to create one in the next two years according to new research from the Association for Talent Development (ATD). Seven percent of respondents were not sure if they had a formal program in place.

Of the 55 percent of organizations that do not have a program in place, 54 percent cited lack of resources (time and money) as the key barrier, according to Coaching: Enhancing Leadership and Performance, which is sponsored by getAbstract. The next most-cited barriers are lack of knowledge on how to administer a program (38 percent) and lack of support from leadership (37 percent).

When asked to evaluate the effectiveness of their organization’s formal coaching program, 55 percent of respondents rate their programs as highly or very highly effective. An additional 36 percent rate their coaching programs as moderately effective.

The research also examines why an organization would have a formal coaching program, the structures of those programs, how technology is used in coaching, and how organizations evaluate their formal coaching programs.

Several other key findings emerged from this research:

  • The majority of organizations that have formal coaching programs have more than one; 26 percent have four or more such programs.
  • Formal coaching now largely takes place in virtual spaces. Nearly two in three respondents offer a virtual coaching program, where a coach works with coachees using a video platform.
  • The primary benefits organizations receive from their formal coaching programs are improved leadership and management skills (75 percent of respondents), better employee performance (58 percent), and better job satisfaction and engagement by coachees (55 percent).
  • In their internal coaching programs, organizations are most likely to offer coaching to employees in the leadership pipeline or in leadership training programs (57 percent) and high-potential employees (52 percent). Executives are most likely to receive coaching through an organization’s external coaching program (52 percent).
  • The majority of organizations hold coachees accountable for completing the coaching program, whether by proving they completed program requirements or demonstrating benefits received therein. Those who do so are more likely to be high performers.

A free webinar on this research will take place on Tuesday, November 29, at 2 p.m. ET.

About ATD

The Association for Talent Development (ATD) is the world’s largest professional membership organization supporting those who develop the knowledge and skills of employees, improve performance, and help to achieve results for the organizations they serve. Established in 1943, the association was previously known as the American Society for Training & Development (ASTD).

ATD’s members come from more than 100 countries and work in public and private organizations in every industry sector. ATD supports talent development professionals who gather locally in volunteer-led US chapters and international member networks and with international strategic partners.

For more information, visit td.org.

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