Mentoring & Coaching for Peak Performance

Mentors and coaches provide wisdom, insight, encouragement and accountability to help people combine effectiveness and efficiency so that they can do the right things right.
The lines between training, coaching and mentoring are often blurred. A coach may perform all three functions at various stages for a client. Coaching is usually focused on helping clients clarify objectives and strategies. Training usually focuses on achieving specific tactical skills. Mentoring is helping someone realize his or her potential.

Team and individual coaching can be a great investment in human resource development. Employees become high performers after they have been trained and given the opportunity and encouragement to use their knowledge and skills. The role of a coach is to help the employee maximize performance by clarifying goals, developing action plans, acquiring new skills and eliminating obstacles.

The services of mentors and coaches can be gratuitous or billable. Many organizations encourage and facilitate mentorship to enhance performance and continuity. A mentoring/coaching program can include individual and group meetings in person, over the phone, e-mail, or browser. Coaching programs have been developed for executives, managers, sales teams and entrepreneurs. Individual coaching sessions often take place weekly for half an hour over the phone, while group sessions typically last 2 hours on-site. Many professional coaches offer a free workshop or sample session, after which, the tax-deductible cost is in the $100 per hour range for the coach’s time, and double that for group sessions.

The methods used in coaching are similar to counseling, but the focus is different. The focus of counseling is normally limited to resolving problems, while coaching includes uncovering opportunities.

Benefits of Coaching

A recent study of 100 executives, who received coaching from Manchester Inc. (, showed a 5.7 times return on initial investment.

Companies that provided coaching to executives benefit from improvements in:

  • Productivity (reported by 53% of executives)
  • Quality (48%)
  • Organizational strength (48%)
  • Customer service (39%)
  • Reducing customer complaints (34%)
  • Retaining executives who received coaching (32%)
  • Cost reductions (23%)
  • Bottom-line profitability (22%)

Executives who received coaching benefit from improved:

  • Working relationships with direct reports (reported by 77% of executives)
  • Working relationships with immediate supervisors (71%)
  • Teamwork (67%)
  • Working relationships with peers (63%)
  • Job satisfaction (61%)
  • Conflict reduction (52%)
  • Organizational commitment (44%)
  • Working relationships with clients (37%)