Why you shouldn't get leadership coaching.

Organizational leaders these days are bombarded with the idea that they will need leadership coaching at some point in their career. It almost seems to be a rite of passage if one wants to be considered a “successful” leader.

But I’m here to tell you why you shouldn’t engage in leadership coaching and why it will be a waste of your companies resources.

Once upon a time I worked with a large company and one of the senior VP’s got some leadership coaching he just loved. He had issues he really wanted to address, he found the person that was the right fit for him and it was so overwhelmingly successful that he then made every manager under him attend the exact same coaching.

And it was SUCH A WASTE.


His managers didn’t have areas they wanted to work on, they didn’t feel they had anything to address. To make it worse, the coach was great, but just wasn’t the right fit for every manager in the company.

If leadership coaching is going to be successful, you have to start from a foundation of honestly recognizing where you might need some guidance, and honestly need to be willing to accept that guidance.

If you don’t think you really have any issues to address, or you think you can address all your issues on your own, you are just throwing away money and time by going to leadership coaching. It’s a considerable time and funding investment to consider.

When considering leadership coaching, get very very honest with yourself. Do you really think you that that much, if anything, to improve on? Do those improvements really need and outside coach? Is it really worth your time away from work in order to work with that coach?

If you’re only considering coaching because it’s what you are “supposed” to be doing right now, just don’t. The ONLY reason to consider leadership coaching is if you really feel like you need that help to take your leadership to the next level, or if you have obstacles that you just haven’t been able to overcome on your own.

If you’re thinking about coaching because you have taken an honest assessment of your performance and thought “Man, I need help”, then you are the perfect candidate to head into a coaching relationship.

Do it because you know it will help you.

Don’t do it because your boss wants you to or because it looks good. Nothing looks worse than spending $20k on leadership coaching and coming out the other side unchanged. Your team will notice. Your colleagues and peers will notice.

This is one of the choices where you need to get personal about your career. Be thoughtful and intentional with the choice. If it’s not for you, be honest about that. If it is for you, find the right coach and get moving.