UK plc failing to invest in training for its coaches

UK businesses are increasingly using coaching to help develop staff, but are
failing to invest in training for the coaches.

New research shows that more than eight out of 10 UK firms use coaching, but
only one in five provide training for coaches.

A survey of 211 HR specialists by The Work Foundation found that coaching
and mentoring skills tend to trickle down through organisations, with senior
managers working with middle managers and middle managers with their juniors.

Coaching tends to be focused on current performance issues, and mentoring is
used to develop long-term skills and prospects.

Sixty-four per cent of respondents used coaching to develop job-specific or
technical skills, followed by management development (50 per cent) and
leadership skills (47 per cent).

The most popular use for mentoring is familiarising new recruits with the
organisation (45 per cent).

Stephen Bevan, director of research at The Work Foundation, said it was
encouraging that so many organisations recognised the benefits of coaching and

"A good coach or mentor can make a massive difference to individual and
organisational performance, but a bad one can be an ‘unguided missile’ and do
considerable damage."

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