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Why develop a Coaching Culture?

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May 8, 2024
CEO, Founder & Executive Coach
4 min read
Building a coaching culture boosts performance, learning, engagement, retention, adaptability, teamwork, leadership, and organisational culture.

Why develop a Coaching Culture?

Building a coaching culture within an organisation is a strategic move that can yield significant employee performance, engagement, and organisational growth benefits.

This article delves into the reasons why organisations should consider building a coaching culture, supported by relevant references to underscore the importance and impact of such an initiative.

1. Enhancing Employee Performance

One of the primary reasons for building a coaching culture is its positive impact on employee performance. Coaching provides personalised feedback and guidance, helping individuals understand their strengths and areas for improvement.

According to a study by the International Coaching Federation (ICF), organisations with strong coaching cultures report higher employee engagement and revenue growth than those without (ICF, 2019). This suggests that coaching directly contributes to enhancing employees' skills and competencies, leading to improved performance across the board.

2. Fostering a Learning Environment

A coaching culture encourages continuous learning and development, creating an environment where employees are motivated to acquire new skills and knowledge. This is particularly important in today’s fast-paced business world, where adapting and learning quickly is a key competitive advantage.

In their research on deliberate practice, Ericsson et al. (1993) highlighted the significance of ongoing learning and adaptation for achieving high levels of expert performance. By fostering a coaching culture, organisations facilitate a learning environment that supports personal and professional growth.

3. Improving Employee Engagement and Retention

Engagement and retention are critical concerns for organisations. Disengaged employees pose a risk to productivity and turnover, leading to increased recruitment and training costs.

A coaching culture can mitigate these issues by making employees feel valued and supported. Gallup's State of the American Workplace report (2017) found that employees who receive daily feedback from their managers are three times more likely to be engaged at work.

Coaching provides regular, constructive feedback, helping employees feel more connected to their work and the organisation and improving retention rates.

4. Facilitating Organisational Change and Adaptability

Organisations are constantly facing changes and challenges that require adaptability and flexibility. A coaching culture supports change management by helping employees navigate through transitions, understand their roles in the change process, and adapt their behaviours and mindsets accordingly.

According to Kotter’s change management theory (1996), effective change involves empowering employees and fostering a culture of inclusivity and open communication. Coaching can play a vital role in this process by providing the guidance and support needed to embrace change.

5. Promoting Collaboration and Teamwork

Coaching enhances collaboration and teamwork by improving communication skills and reducing team conflicts. Through coaching, individuals learn to listen actively, express their thoughts clearly, and appreciate diverse perspectives. This can lead to a more harmonious and productive team environment.

A study by Google’s Project Aristotle (2016) found that psychological safety, more than anything else, was critical to making a team work effectively. Coaching helps build this psychological safety by encouraging open dialogue and mutual respect among team members.

6. Enhancing Leadership Skills

Building a coaching culture benefits employees at all levels and enhances leadership skills. Leaders who coach are more likely to develop strong relationships with their team members, understand their needs and motivations, and lead by example.

This aligns with the servant leadership model, which emphasises the importance of leaders being servants first, focusing on the growth and well-being of their people (Greenleaf, 1977). Through coaching, leaders can better understand their leadership style and its impact on others.

7. Contributing to a Positive Organisational Culture

Finally, a coaching culture creates a positive organisational culture where respect, trust, and mutual support are valued. This type of culture attracts talent, encourages innovation, and drives organisational success.

Schein’s model of organisational culture (2010) highlights the importance of underlying assumptions, values, and artefacts in shaping organisational culture.

Coaching, by promoting values such as continuous improvement, open communication, and employee well-being, helps in embedding these positive cultural elements within the organization.


Building a coaching culture offers myriad benefits that can transform an organisation by enhancing employee performance, fostering a learning environment, improving engagement and retention, facilitating change, promoting collaboration, enhancing leadership skills, and contributing to a positive organisational culture.

By investing in coaching, organisations can create a supportive and dynamic environment that benefits individual employees and drives organisational success and sustainability.


  • International Coaching Federation (ICF). (2019). Building a Coaching Culture for Change Management.
  • Ericsson, K. A., Krampe, R. T., & Tesch-Römer, C. (1993). The role of deliberate practice in the acquisition of expert performance. Psychological Review, 100(3), 363.
  • Gallup. (2017). State of the American Workplace.
  • Kotter, J. P. (1996). Leading Change. Harvard Business School Press.
  • Greenleaf, R. K. (1977). Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness. Paulist Press.
  • Schein, E. H. (2010). Organisational Culture and Leadership. Jossey-Bass.
  • Duhigg, C. (2016). What Google Learned From Its Quest to Build the Perfect Team. The New York Times Magazine.