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Driving organizational change with internal coaching programs: part one

David Rock (Founder and CEO of Results Coaching Systems, Sydney, Australia)
Ruth Donde (Global Consultant and Regional Manager at Results Coaching Systems, Auckland, New Zealand)

Industrial and Commercial Training

ISSN: 0019-7858

Article publication date: 1 February 2008




The purpose of this two part paper is to outline a new way of utilizing coaching to drive wide scale organizational change.


The authors illustrate the various benefits to using internal coaches, flesh out the cost benefits, and highlight a range of ways that organizations can integrate coaching into their people, performance and culture frameworks. It covers training, design and implementation issues as well as looking at aligning coaching models with the organization's strategic approach. The paper draws on extensive case studies and posits some best practice principles, then addresses some of the key questions around this topic. This paper draws on interviews with over 50 internal coaches over two years, and several other research papers on this topic.


It illustrates how training leaders to be internal coaches is a more scalable, sustainable and robust approach to driving change and improving performance than hiring external coaches. Early indicators are showing significant increases in retention, engagement, productivity and performance, as well as ROI (17x), across organizations that have developed internal coaching.

Research limitations/implications

Data is critical to understanding coaching impacts within organizational contexts. Thanks to those organizations using measurement, impacts to the business can be determined.


This positive data is significant for organizations making decisions about introducing coaching initiatives, driving organizational change or adopting a coaching culture.



Rock, D. and Donde, R. (2008), "Driving organizational change with internal coaching programs: part one", Industrial and Commercial Training, Vol. 40 No. 1, pp. 10-18.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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