Whether you are an independent coach building your business, an internal coach for an organization, or a company that provides coaching to others, measuring the impact of coaching is critical. It moves coaching from “nice to have” to “must have”.
Your individual client may not see the need to measure or evaluate coaching. After all, he or she can say with certainty “this is the best thing I have ever experienced”. Translating that into something useful can be challenging.
The WIIFM of measurement may differ slightly depending upon your perspective.
- As an independent coach, measuring the effectiveness of coaching not only helps your client “see” progress over time, it can help you to build your own business. Self reported benefits from the client in the form of testimonials or success stories, formally collected and then used (with permission) by you, helps build your reputation as a coach – which can mean an increase in business.
- Internal coaches can use measurement and evaluation data to uncover organizational themes, the development needs of client populations, and challenges to implementation of company strategies. This information can then be shared with others within the organization to inform or influence talent management, recruiting and leadership development.
- Companies like Blanchard who provides large scale coaching to client organizations benefit in the same ways. We build our reputation, we expand business, we track trends and themes that can influence strategies, AND we help our clients promote coaching or a coaching culture within their organizations.
- Post coaching surveys – informal or formal – collect the success stories. Get clients to be specific about their experiences.
- Impact studies – an interview based study, conducted by an outside third party that can look at the impact of coaching from the client’s perspective, or those surrounding the person being coached, can evaluate effectiveness as well as illuminate unforeseen or unexpected trends and themes.
- Correlate to targeted trends – depending on the purpose of coaching you or your client organization may track promotions, retention, employee satisfaction, cycle times for change, or any number of other measurable outcomes.
Regardless of how you choose to measure coaching, the ability to do so brings benefit to both you and your clients. What will you d to improve your ability to measure and evaluate the effectiveness of the work you do?