The Growing Need for Coaching as a Service

by Mark Smith / November 3, 2020

The world is, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, moving at an ever-increasing pace in the direction of technology. Technology in turn is moving in the direction of service.  

Think about it; software as a service is driven by demand.  We are in a fast-moving world in which instant gratification has become the norm. Our screen addiction and extreme responsiveness has us receiving dopamine hits every few minutes. 

We demand service, from turnaround times and instant solutions to push of a button finance approval and vehicles delivered to our door.

Our external focus leaves a gap, a yawning divide between what clients demand and what your people – especially your salespeople – are equipped to provide. 

This is where coaching comes in.  

Leadership coaching has led the charge of a fast-growing industry. Organisations have realised that staff have greater needs than traditional incentives, and many have grown internal coaching capability so that coaching is available to managers and staff. 

This typically takes the form of a coaching series over a few months and results in shifts in self-awareness, behaviour, and results. The impact of coaching is widely recognised as being exceptionally valuable in employee engagement, team cohesiveness and leadership efficacy, not to mention sales and margin gains.

Unfortunately, the most common mistake is having managers coach without proper training. They end up using coaching as a coercive tool as opposed to a developmental one.  

The International Coaching Federation (ICF) defines coaching as “partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.” Coaching is a distinct service and differs greatly from therapy, consulting, mentoring, or training.

However, businesses do not always understand that coaching is a highly skilled, self-directed process wherein coachees formulate their own ideas, insights, awareness and a consequent change in course of action. 

It is estimated by the ICF that there are currently 53,300 full-time and part-time coaches worldwide, up from 47,500 coaches in 2011. About 92% of these are active. Of these, 33% operate in the United States — a total of 17,500 coaches.

One would think that the U.S. market is saturated, but demand appears to still be growing, spanning across both personal and business needs. The Business Coaching Industry has a market size of $11.6bn in 2020, further highlighting the demand for effective coaching.

Let’s now look to the future


Where is the industry going, and perhaps more importantly, where should the industry be going? There is no shortage of coaches; coaching schools are doing a fantastic job of creating supply to meet the demand.

We have a burgeoning coaching industry, and coaches who are certified and belong to either the ICF or similar European bodies supply a consistently high standard of coaching. 

The self-employed coaches have the typical sole provider challenge of having to market themselves and while doing so, still earn. This often means that, when brought into corporate deals with other coaches, the sales and marketing efforts of the self-employed coach dry up as they are focused on delivering for their corporate deal.

What is the cost-effective, efficient solution to this problem? At Mentor Group, we have adopted the Coaching as a Service model. The idea is simple; a selection of highly trained coaches and coaching resources available on-demand, giving you access to market-leading coaching anytime, anywhere in the world.

Coachees can sign up for a single, “spontaneous” coaching session, or book 4 sessions over a couple of months to look at and strategize past a particular dilemma or problem. Sessions could also be booked on a regular cadence, guaranteeing work for coaches and fostering loyalty and trust between coach and coachee.

Managers who would have been given coaching as part of their KPIs are also then freed up to concentrate on their core skills, interests and business focus.

With 2020 continuing to demand more and more agility and flexibility from businesses around the globe, the need for effective Coaching as a Service will only grow. Get in touch with us today to learn how Mentor Group can help you drive sustainable, exponential growth in your team with Coaching as a Service.

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Mark Smith

Mark Smith

Experienced coach and business development professional, and an associate consultant at Mentor Group