The Case for Internal vs. External Coaching

The Case for Internal vs. External Coaching

by necoaching

Anybody involved in Coaching within organizations should read the book “Executive Coaching for Results” by Underhill, McAnally and Koriath. It is a wonderful resource that provides insights through a combination of quite specific research and case studies from companies that have immersed themselves in this methodology.

What might be of interest to many large organizations is the commentary on the benefits of External versus Internal Coaching. Though they both share the common goal of developing leadership competencies, the following “pros” and “pros” emerged.

External Coaches

• Credibility – many are former C suite individuals and can relate at a higher level

• Formal Training – this is their chosen profession and therefore more in touch with best practices

• Objectivity – not attached in any way to the outcome and therefore no conflicts of interest

• Confidentiality – clients feel much safer sharing with somebody from outside the organization

Internal Coaches

• Affordability – not withstanding the expense of training, costs of providing coaching are much lower

• Accessibility – many more people can reap the benefits of coaching

• Familiarity – greater knowledge of corporate culture

• Consistency – can control the coaching process more readily throughout the organization

Truthfully, there is a place for both types of coaches in large organizations. External coaching will typically be the domain of senior executives where the overall impact of change can be significant. On the other hand, internal coaching makes this form of development much more accessible and certainly viable for mid level management and high potential candidates.