Coaching And Mentoring Programs Are An Underutilized Leadership Development Tool

ST. PETERSBURG, FL (June 7, 2007) – Improving leadership capabilities always seems to be at the top of the wish list for most corporations, but if they really want to see improvement, companies should take a harder look at their coaching and mentoring programs. Despite the fact that most say such programs are very valuable, fewer than a fifth think their own programs are good or excellent, according to a just-released study conducted by the Institute for Corporate Productivity.

The study found that, of the more than 300 organizations polled, fully half don’t have such programs at all. “There seems to be a tremendous missed opportunity here,” said Jay Jamrog, i4cp Senior Vice President of Research. “Our study shows that the most common use for these programs is to develop executives and other managers. But, in an age when so many organizations are saying there’s a shortage of leadership, they’re underutilizing one of the best tools available.”

The study found that only about half of respondents say their organizations have formal coaching and mentoring programs in place (49% coaching, 47% mentoring). When asked what percentage of their employees use coaches or mentors , 52% said coaches were used by 5% or less of workers, and 62% said the same thing about mentors.

“Three out of five respondents said they considered coaching to be quite valuable or very valuable,” said Jamrog. “Yet, 82% reported their coaching programs were only ‘average’ or below. By boosting both the quality and usage of these programs, organizations might make a huge dent in today’s and tomorrow’s leadership shortages.”

To find coaches and mentors, most organizations look internally, with 68% reporting they find their coaches in-house, compared with 93% locating mentors within the company. When selecting coaches externally, 55% rely on recommendations from colleagues or other organizations . The top coaching qualification listed (71%) was business experience, followed by recommendations and consulting experience.

As for training of mentors, 44% of respondents use some type of internal training function, while 39% said no special training is required. Thirty-two percent report using in-house mentors to train others.

The Coaching/Mentoring Practitioner Consensus Survey was conducted by i4cp, in conjunction with, in May 2007.

For more information about this study, please contact Greg Pernula at or via phone at (727) 345-2226.

About i4cp, inc.

Building on the 35-year history of its predecessor, the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp, inc.) improves corporate productivity through a combination of research, community, tools and technology focused on the management of human capital. With more than 100 leading organizations as members, including many of the best-known companies in the world, i4cp draws upon one of the industry’s largest and most experienced research teams and executives-in-residence to produce more than 10,000 pages annually of rapid, reliable and respected research and analysis surrounding all facets of the management of people in organizations. Additionally, i4cp identifies and analyzes the upcoming major issues and future trends that are expected to influence workforce productivity and provides member clients with tools and technology to execute leading-edge strategies and “next practices” on these issues and trends. i4cp is a for-profit company with offices in St. Petersburg, FL.