Michael Stern Associates Inc.

Helping Successful Executives Enhance Their Professional Effectiveness

Choosing an Executive Coach

How do you identify the most appropriate executive coach for your organization?

Here are some questions to ask:

Is this coach seasoned and experienced?

Coaching expertise cannot be learned overnight. It is forged through education, work experience, and an intimate knowledge of management issues. When meeting with coaches, ask about their counseling training and business experience.

Does the coach really understand the complex issues faced by executives?

Is the coach familiar with senior management responsibilities and the problems often encountered (but rarely talked about) by executives?

What people-development experience do they have?

Does the coach have a track record of recognizing talent, evaluating executive abilities, and building leadership teams?

What type of framework does the coach recommend?

A credible coach will suggest a specific framework for each project. It will include a time frame for achieving agreed-upon goals and guidelines for recognizing progress – even during the early stages.

Will they focus primarily on business-related issues?

You’re not paying for therapy. Make sure that the coach is focused on generating results that positively impact your business.


Do they understand the sensitive nature of the coaching relationship and the importance of confidentiality and accountability in everything they do?