Today’s labor market is in great demand for specialized employees – for this reason, companies operating in different industries have to look for various ways to attract and keep top talent. Some do this by offering attractive benefits and flexible working hours (e.g., a 4-day work week or shorter Fridays), while others implement special talent management programs, focusing on constant employee development. In the latter case, executive coaching can play a huge role. What is this process and how is it supposed to help with talent management? Read on to find out more.

Executive coaching – table of contents:

  1. What is executive coaching?
  2. Executive coaching and the talent management process
  3. Executive coaching – when will it work?
  4. Summary

What is executive coaching?

This form of coaching involves strengthening managerial skills – so it is aimed at people in managerial positions, both senior and junior. The role of these people is specific, as it mainly relates to strategic planning and human resource management, which requires specialized skills (industry knowledge, experience in implementing processes) as well as soft skills (including team building skills and motivational skills). A properly planned executive coaching process is designed to help a person better perform their duties, and thus ensure better results at work.

It depends on the individual situation and the needs of the person receiving support, what form the executive coaching will take, what the cooperation between the coach and manager will focus on, and what skills will be strengthened. It is important to note, however, that executive coaching can be addressed to people already experienced in managerial positions and those preparing for promotion and taking over such a role. This is where executive coaching connects with talent management.

executive coaching

Executive coaching and the talent management process

Employees stay with companies that provide them not only with opportunities for development (e.g., through numerous training courses, introduction of new technologies, giving them space to take initiative and try new solutions), but also to prove themselves in new roles as they climb the career ladder. It is for this purpose that organizations implement talent management programs that aim to attract, retain and take care of the development of the best people in their field, and ultimately to make the selected people use their abilities to execute the strategy adopted by the company.

Some employees will be convinced that they should perform managerial functions, but not immediately – only after proper preparation, which executive coaching can help with. Thus, in the case of talent management, the coach’s role will be to ensure that the given person will adequately fulfill their responsibilities in the new position.

Executive coaching – when will it work?

When to use executive coaching? This process will work for two types of people we may be dealing with when promoting internally. This includes:

  • very experienced and specialized employees, but having problems interacting with others (interpersonal skills or emotional intelligence training is required to have authority among their employees),
  • people with excellent team building skills, but lacking some knowledge and experience – it is necessary to fill in the gaps in order to be sure that the assigned tasks will be carried out in an appropriate manner.

The result of the carried out activities will be the development of employee’s skills (assessing their shortcomings and identifying areas that need strengthening), which will translate into the achievement of expected results by the managed team.


One might ask whether it would not be better to hire an already experienced manager (“from the outside”), instead of sending a potential manager to a coach to prepare them for the new role – after all, such a decision consumes the company’s resources. It is hard to disagree with this argument, but this is only one side of the coin.

The other is related to how difficult it is these days to build employee loyalty and retain their skills, knowledge and experience in the team. Internal promotions help bypass the processes of introducing an employee to the company. It is for these reasons that in many cases cooperating with a coach works better and is a lower cost for the business.

Read also: 2 talent management models

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Author: Nicole Mankin

HR manager with an excellent ability to build a positive atmosphere and create a valuable environment for employees. She loves to see the potential of talented people and mobilize them to develop.