Insider’s Guide to Executive Coaching

By: Marilyn Fettner

Are you wondering how executive coaching can help you improve productivity and communication in your workplace? Do you want to know the benefits of executive coaching and what is important for a business to focus on when coaching executives? Is executive coaching necessary for all businesses or just larger corporations? And what is vital for businesses to know when coaching  executives?


Are you looking for answers to these questions?

You’ve come to the right place!

Executive coaching is highly popular in today’s business world. But what is it? What are its benefits? How does one go about finding a good coach?

This Insider’s Guide to Executive Coaching answers your questions and more.

CEOs who don’t receive outside leadership advice often bear the stress of having all the answers.

Coaching can help CEOs and leaders in several ways, including developing key skills, improving decision-making, increasing productivity, enhancing leadership effectiveness, and guiding their company to success.

Fettner Career and Life Coaching offers private coaching for CEOs and leaders looking to improve their performance and get the most out of their careers. In executive coaching, you confer, confidentially with a coach who has extensive expertise and experience working with executives about your goals, challenges, and problems. Your coach is your collaborative partner who functions as a sounding board, problem-solving partner, trusted adviser, and personal guide for your executive growth.

Did You Know?

Executive coaching is a rapidly growing industry, partly due to the increasing demand for executive coaching services. In today’s increasingly globalized and cutthroat economic environment, executives are under more pressure to do their best. At the same time, there is a greater emphasis on personal development and executive presence. As a result, more and more executives are turning to executive coaches for help achieving their goals.

What Exactly Is Executive Coaching?

Executive coaching is a business relationship in which a trained coach works with clients to help them reach specific goals. The client is usually a high-level executive or leader in an organization. The coach provides the client with support, advice, and direction.

The coaching relationship is built on trust and mutual respect. The coach’s job is to partner with the executive to problem-solve and serve as an informed sounding board and trusted adviser to help the client make a plan for the results they want. The coach does not make decisions for the client but instead provides a sounding board for ideas.

Executive coaching focuses on helping you identify your pain spots, as well as your strengths and also your deficiencies. The coach collaborates with you to build a strategy to help you reach professional and business objectives. Additionally, the coach will hold you accountable, so you may be more motivated to follow through on your commitments. Executive coaching is distinct from other forms of coaching in that it primarily focuses on assisting high-level professionals and executives in achieving their personal and professional objectives.

As a leader, you are responsible for making decisions that will impact your company, your team, and your bottom line. That’s why it’s so important to have good instincts, sound judgment, and strong problem-solving skills. Unfortunately, these things only sometimes come naturally. Fortunately, that’s where executive coaching comes in.

A professional executive coach will help you improve at making decisions, developing wiser judgment, and building a more productive, collaborative, and healthy work culture. They’ll also help you identify where to focus to make the most significant impact. In other words, executive coaching can help you take your leadership skills and your career to the next level. If you’re serious about making wise, well-informed decisions that benefit your business and your career, executive coaching should be at the top of your list of success tools.

9 Advantages of Executive Coaching

Here are some of the advantages of working with an executive coach:

9 Advantages of Executive Coaching

1. Improve Your Effectiveness as a Leader

An executive coach will help you enhance your key business skills, understand your natural abilities, and hone your leadership style, to be a more astute leader. Your coach will also help you learn how to make wiser decisions, delegate smartly, and manage conflict. In short, a coach can help you enhance your leadership performance. And your company will be better off when you’re a better leader!

2. Get Ahead of the Curve

Being ahead of the curve in business is vital to success. If you can identify industry trends and develop strategies to stay ahead of the competition, you’ll be well on your way to heightened success. And if you need to figure out where your industry is headed, your coach can help you identify trends, along with opportunities and threats in the market, and develop strategies to stay ahead of your competition. With your personal strategic partner, you can be sure you’re always ahead of the curve.

3. Develop Your Strategic Vision

An experienced executive coach will help you develop a strategic vision for your business and your career. This vision will guide your decision-making and help you set SMART  goals. Without a clear vision, getting lost in the day-to-day grind and losing sight of your long-term goals is easy. A good coach understands your strengths, weaknesses, and goals. With this in mind, they will help you keep your eye on the prize and ensure that your career is headed in the right direction. They’ll also help you identify any roadblocks that might be standing in your way and work with you to devise a plan to overcome them.

4. Achieve Your Goals

An executive coach can be incredibly effective when it comes to achieving a goal. They’ll work with you to uncover and positively address internal and external barriers that are keeping you from realizing your true potential for success. You’ll collaborate to develop a plan and your coach will  hold you accountable to ensure you stay on track. This is particularly critical when you’re trying to achieve something difficult or challenging. When you have a clear goal – or need to clarify your goals – and are willing to be open to new perspectives and approaches , working with an executive coach can make the difference between ‘getting along’ and ‘soaring ahead.’

5. Save You Precious Time – and Energy

Time (and energy) management is one of the most important factors contributing to professional success, and any winning executive will tell you that! There are numerous moving components that go into making sure a business is functioning efficiently. These include effective processes and procedures,  goal-setting, prioritizing, and appropriate staff and resource allocation. These are areas where your coach’s input can be of great value. For instance, a coach can help you stay focused on your goals by working with you to develop time-saving techniques, and learn how to transfer responsibility so that you have time, energy, and concentration for more important responsibilities – things that only you can do. Your coach can help you filter out minutia so that you can focus on big picture items, such as growth, profit, market penetration or expansion, and vision and mission. Your coach is also your partner providing guidance and support when things get difficult, by  brainstorming and problem-solving with you and helping you see things from different vantage points that can reveal new possibilities.

6. Reduce Your Stress

The world of business is filled with tension. At times when you may be  feeling overburdened or overwhelmed,your coach can assist you with coping techniques to help you reduce your stress and tension. It can also be helpful to work with your coach to identify the sources of your stress and provide you with actionable advice for overcoming those stressors. Reducing stress is not only essential for physical health, but it can also help improve concentration, problem-solving, and clarity. Additionally and perhaps most importantly, your coach can assist you in striking a healthy balance between your professional and personal life, which will help you prevent potentially serious burnout.

7. Make Better Decisions

Making informed decisions is one of the most crucial components of effective leadership. To make informed judgments, it is necessary to have access to relevant data and solid decision-making skills; however, there are also  other considerations. For example, when selecting the best course of action, it is frequently necessary to think about the advantages and disadvantages associated with each of the options. Your coach can help ensure that you have all necessary data and that you allocate sufficient time to consider the advantages and disadvantages of each decision-making option. Additional approaches a coach can help you consider are weighing the benefits and risks, determining the ROI, using your intuition along with assessing the facts, and weaving in emotional intelligence considerations. Different decision-making approaches are appropriate for different situations. Your coach will be an objective partner to help you determine the best approach and work with you to weigh the relevant factors for an optimal decision.

8. Increase Your Productivity

Is increasing your productivity one of your goals? If so, executive coaching can help! A coach provides an objective lens to spot time-wasting activities and provide strategies to relieve you of time-wasting habits. Your coach will work with you to identify more efficient processes and help you build new more productive skills. They can also teach you how to effectively delegate work to others, freeing up time and energy for you to focus on aspects of running your business or leading your team that are most critical to its growth and success.

9. Get an Outside Perspective

It’s easy to get bogged down in day-to-day details. Your coach will help you step back and see the big picture. They will also facilitate your ability to identify blind spots so that you can make more effective decisions.

Executive coaching is extremely beneficial for busy executives. If you want (or need) to improve your effectiveness as a leader, get ahead of the curve, or set SMART goals and achieve them, coaching can make the difference for you!

Want to learn more about executive coaching? Contact Marilyn Fettner today to schedule a consultation. She will be happy to answer your questions and help determine if executive coaching is right for you.

What Is the Executive Coaching Process?

Executive Coaching Process

1. Schedule an Initial Consultation

In the first step of executive coaching, the coach and client have a brief call to talk about the client’s challenges and goals and what they hope to accomplish through coaching, and to determine fit. This is also an opportunity for the coach to get to know the client and their business. After the initial consultation, the coach and client will then collaborate to develop a plan of action for the client to reach their goals.

 2. Develop a Plan of Action

The client and coach collaborate to build a strategy for the client, to reach their objectives and achieve the desired results. The coach provides valuable insight and support to guide the client in determining their objectives and setting SMART goals. The plan outlines step-by-step actions for the client to take, in orderto reach their objectives, achieve important milestones, and satisfy the intended goals for success.

3. Take Action

After the strategy has been developed, it is time for the client to begin implementing the plan. An important part of this process is  the encouragement and direction the client receives from the coach as they work toward accomplishing their goals. Often, clients receive little to no encouragement or feedback, so having a coach who is open, honest, and supportive, and provides regular feedback, fills an important requisite for the client’s growth. Assisting the client in problem-solving, supplying them with resources, and providing moral support are also valuable benefits of coaching.

4. Evaluate Progress

As the client progresses through the action steps in their plan, their coach checks in with them at regular intervals, to hear how they are doing and offer relevant feedback. Through these check-ins, the coach can verify how well the client is following the plan and collaborate with them to identify potential barriers and make any necessary adjustments. In addition, the coach will celebrate the client’s achievements at each step and milestone along the path.

5. Achieve Results

The goal of executive coaching is to support, guide, and encourage clients to set and achieve objectives and goals for success in their career and often also in their personal life, in order to bring their career and personal life into alignment. They will receive assistance from their coach until they have succeeded and can continue going forward on their own. However, may clients choose to maintain their relationship with their coach in a maintenance type of arrangement. This is valuable because monthly check-ins can keep future problems from developing and help clients stay on track.

Who Can Benefit from Executive Coaching?

Executive Coaching

1. C-Suite Executives, Senior Executives, VPs, Directors

Coaching can help you hone your leadership skills to achieve your career goals. An experienced coach gives you the advantage of an objective observer’s point of view, helps you achieve goals that may seem hard to reach, and provides you with support and accountability to ensure that you reach your goals.

2. Business Owners

Coaching can help bring your business to new heights, help you achieve work-life balance, assess opportunities for scaling, and plan for succession and retirement. A coach can help you develop growth plans, build systems, overcome problems, and anticipate and plan for opportunities.

3. Budding Entrepreneurs

Executive coaching can be extremely helpful if you have a business idea but don’t know how to make it happen. For example, a coach will help you assess the feasibility of your idea, coach you through conducting a SWOT analysis, create a business plan, launch your company, and attract and retain customers.

4. Anyone Wanting to Improve their Productivity

If you desire to be more productive, look for an executive coach. They will help you figure out which pursuits are taking up too much of your time and guide you to more effectively allocate your time and energy. They can also teach you how to delegate effectively and help you identify opportunities to increase productivity and satisfaction. Often, adjusting the structure of your day or week can be impactful for positive change and make a difference in your productivity, energy, and satisfaction level.

5. Executives Looking to Make a Career Change

If you’re considering a career change, coaching can help you make the transition. For example, a coach can guide you in identifying your strengths and attributes, exploring and considering your options, designing your plan, creating your marketing brand, preparing for interviews, and successfully transitioning into your new role and culture.

What Qualities Should an Executive Coach Have?

When looking for an executive coach, finding someone who is a good fit for your style, values, and needs is essential. Here are some things to keep in mind:

1. Do they have experience coaching executives?

It’s important to find a coach who has experience working with executives. An executive coach needs to understand the challenges and opportunities that come with being in a leadership position.

2. Do they have a personality that you like?

When meeting with potential coaches, pay attention to their coaching style. Do they ask a lot of questions, or are they more directive? Do they provide feedback or let you figure things out on your own? Finding a coach whose style meshes well with your own is important.

3. Do they have a good reputation?

When you’re considering a potential coach, be sure to do your research. Check out online reviews and talk to people who have worked with them in the past. You want to ensure you’re working with someone who has a good reputation and is respected in the coaching community.

4. Do they offer a free consultation?

Most executive coaches offer a free consultation so you can get to know them and see if they’re a good fit for you. This is a great opportunity to ask questions and get a feel for their coaching style.

Final Thoughts

We hope that you found this advice helpful if you are considering employing the services of an executive coach. As you continue your quest for the ideal coach, don’t forget to keep these considerations in mind. In addition, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Fettner Career & Life Coaching if you have any questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can executive coaching help me?

If you’re a business owner, entrepreneur, or executive, coaching can help improve your productivity and effectiveness, and move your career forward through managerial and leadership skill-building.

What should I look for in an executive coach?

When looking for an executive coach, finding someone who is a good fit for you and your needs is important. Look for a coach with experience coaching executives and with a style that you’re comfortable with.

Do executive coaches offer free consultations?

Most executive coaches offer a free consultation so you can get to know them and see if they’re a good fit for you. This is a great opportunity to ask questions and get a feel for their coaching style.

How do I know if executive coaching is right for me?

Coaching can be a helpful tool if you’re looking to improve your productivity, effectiveness, or bottom line. We offer a free 15-minute consultation to explore whether coaching is right for you.

What is the difference between an executive coach and a leadership coach?

Although executive and leadership coaches both have comparable responsibilities within the employment sector, these two areas  of coaching are distinguished from one another in a few key ways.

Executive coaches assist their clients in navigating essential business relationships, including those with key internal stakeholders, board members, and external community and industry partners. These connections are critical to the clients’ overall success. They also serve as a sounding board to discuss decision-making options and problem-solve complex situations. Your executive coach is a strategic and collaborative partner and trusted adviser, to assist with business and workplace challenges and help you move forward in your career.

Leadership coaching, in contrast to executive coaching, it is not reserved solely for top executives. Instead, it is frequently made available to all levels of management, including mid-level and senior managers and VPs, as well as, C-Suite Executives, high performers, and everyone with the desire and dedication to grow in their career, as a leader. It often involves improving performance with leading a team, department, or business function.