Life coaching is increasing in popularity (“What Can Coaches Do for You?”, 2009), and among professionals in leadership roles in particular, the benefits of this service are becoming more widely recognized. Life coaches work with individuals to help them set goals and develop a pathway to achieve them (“What is a Life Coach”, 2021). There are many benefits of life coaching in general, including helping individuals to become more self-reliant, to communicate more productively with others, and to feel more satisfied with their current situation (“Benefits of Coaching,” 2017).
Life coaching can also be beneficial to professionals responsible for leading teams in the workplace, helping them to gain confidence and to improve their performance at the office (“What Can Coaches Do for You?”, 2009). Here, we investigate further to reveal how life coaching can enhance the capabilities of leaders.
If You’re Considering a Life Coach Career, Here’s How Life Coaching Applies to Individuals in Leadership Roles
When working with individuals in leadership roles, life coaches help leaders to tap into their individual performance capacities, set their future goals, and discover a path to achieve them through individual behaviour change and skills training (“What Can Coaches Do for You?”, 2009). Life coaching is focused on establishing competencies within individuals (Moen & Skaalyik, 2009). Companies today are recognizing the value of life coaching for increasing the competence of their workforce, helping to promote professional growth and enhance performance among employees (Moen & Skaalyik, 2009).
When leaders are empowered to become the best versions of themselves through life coaching techniques, evidence shows that their performance in the workplace is positively affected (Moen & Skaalyik, 2009). Research has also shown that such empowerment raises the person’s ability to achieve goals (Losch et. al., 2016).
Life Coaching Improves Confidence and Self-Awareness Among Leaders
If you’re training to become a certified life coach, you’ll be interested in more detail on how your skills can benefit individuals in leadership roles. Multiple studies have found life coaching to be effective in improving the self-confidence and self-awareness of individuals, both of which are important qualities for leaders to possess.
In a study of different female leaders in a global organization, as an example, it was found that leaders reported an increase in their self confidence after receiving life coaching (Bonneywell, S., 2017). Additionally, these women reported achieving a higher level of self-awareness due to life coaching (Bonneywell, S., 2017). Self-awareness is important to leaders, as it helps them to understand how their actions impact other members of a team. Building these skills helped the women in Bonneywell’s study to develop awareness surrounding their leadership style, enabling them to reflect on their actions, and equipping them with the self-esteem necessary to lead with confidence (Bonneywell, S., 2017).
The Self-Efficacy and Productivity of Leaders Improves with Coaching
Life coaching not only improves self-confidence and self-awareness among leaders, but it can also improve their work performance by enhancing their self-efficacy and productivity (Moen & Skaalyik, 2009). Self-efficacy refers to what an individual is able to achieve with the capabilities and skills that they possess (Moen & Skaalyik, 2009). Self-efficacy is directly linked to self-confidence, as an individual’s self-efficacy is dependent on their personal judgment of what they think they’re capable of (Moen & Skaalyik, 2009). In a study that examined the self-efficacy of individuals, it was found that life coaching increased self-efficacy in the clients that received coaching (Moen & Skaalyik, 2009). For those in leadership roles, increased self-efficacy can translate to enhanced work performance, as individuals become empowered to realize their full potential and improve their leadership capabilities (Bonneywell, S., 2017).
Those in a life coach career can also enhance the performance of individuals in leadership roles by improving their productivity (Losch et. al, 2016). In a study, individual coaching and group training were found to reduce the tendency of individuals to procrastinate, while improving their ability to achieve their goals (Losch et. al., 2016). Thus, life coaching can be associated with positive changes related to a leader’s work performance.
Life Coaching Creates a ‘Ripple Effect’ Within Organizations
While life coaching has been shown to improve the personal attributes of leaders as they become more confident in their capabilities and better equipped to perform at work, these effects can also be beneficial for organizations as a whole. A study of leaders receiving coaching sessions coined the term ‘coaching ripple effect’ (O’Connor, S., Cavanagh, M., 2013) to describe the influence of leadership coaching as extended to a leader’s team, in addition to the leader themselves. This study found that the more connected an organization’s teammates were to a leader receiving coaching, the more their own wellbeing and happiness in the workplace improved (O’Connor, S., Cavanagh, M., 2013). This generalized improvement within workplace relationships may serve to benefit the organization as a whole (O’Connor, S., Cavanagh, M., 2013).
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Benefits of Coaching. (2017, December 6) Retrieved from instituteofcoaching.org/coaching-overview/coaching-benefits
Bonneywell, S. (2017). How a coaching intervention supports the development of female leaders in a global organisation. International Journal of Evidence Based Coaching and Mentoring, 11, 57-69.
Coutu, D., Kauffman, K. (2009) What Can Coaches Do for You? Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2009/01/what-can-coaches-do-for-you
Losch, S., Traut-Mattausch, E., Mühlberger, M. D., & Jonas, E. (2016). Comparing the effectiveness of Individual Coaching, Self-Coaching, and GROUP Training: How leadership makes the difference. Frontiers in Psychology, 7. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2016.00629
Moen, F., & Skaalvik, E. (2009). The Effect from Executive Coaching on Performance Psychology. International Journal of Evidence Based Coaching and Mentoring, 7(2), 31.
O’Connor, S., Cavanagh, M. (2013). The coaching ripple effect: The effects of developmental coaching on wellbeing across organisational networks. Psych Well-Being 3, 2. https://doi.org/10.1186/2211-1522-3-2
Rega, Sam. (2021, March 26). What is a life coach? Retrieved from https://www.cnbc.com/2021/03/26/what-is-a-life-coach.html
Sime, Carley. (2019, March 28). How Does Coaching Actually Help Leaders? Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/carleysime/2019/03/28/how-does-coaching-actually-help-leaders/?sh=4da22f4c1645