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Recruitment challenge as 93% of businesses face skills gap- can coaching upskill existing staff?

Research shows that 93% of employers have faced a skills gap in the last 12 months, impacting productivity (48%) and employee morale (45%)*. As a result, employers are looking to fill senior positions with existing staff or hire new recruits who lack the skills required. On the flip side, staff and job hunters can afford to be more selective about the roles they choose and have high expectations about working environments, development, flexibility and salaries.

As a result, investing in your team and their skills has never been more important. Helping staff to learn and grow ensures they feel supported and want to stay and crucially enables them to perform at their absolute best. Ultimately, investing in staff allows your business to thrive. Whilst traditional training courses offer a quick and efficient way of increasing your employees' knowledge, they might not have the impact you need on more senior staff and leaders in the business.

Coaching as an alternative to training

Unlike training, executive coaching takes place on a 1:1 basis and can be targeted at the needs of the individual and the business. When an executive coach works with one or more of your senior team, their job is to unlock their personal and professional potential.

A mix of issues is likely holding your team back; it could be navigating difficult relationships with colleagues, their ability to handle pressure, their confidence and motivation, leadership skills, commercial acumen, or how they are conducting themselves with clients. Working with a coach involves sitting down with someone trained to help your team members identify what's hindering them in their role and create solutions to overcome those barriers. Importantly, it's also about giving them the belief and confidence they need to thrive.

Key differences between coaching and training include:



Group setting

1:1 conversation

Trainer delivers technical knowledge

Coach is focused on the individual and their behaviours and emotions

Learning focussed

Development focussed

Trainer drives the learning process

Coach partners with the coachee, and the coachee owns the sessions and actions

Short term

​Mid-term to long-term process

Why are businesses increasingly turning to coaching?

According to a report by the Chartered Institute for Personal Development (CIPD), there are several reasons companies are increasingly introducing coaching:

  • The pace of technological and social change means business environments are changing rapidly. Coaching has become a popular tool to help individuals adjust to significant changes in their roles and thrive.

  • Employees are demanding a different type of learning experience – more personal and more relevant learning opportunities, the likes of which coaching can provide.

  • Flatter organisational structures and broader management roles mean that recently promoted individuals may have to make large step-changes in skills.

  • Financial performance is intrinsically linked to staff performance, and coaching offers a proactive means of increasing staff performance.

  • Coaching improves decision-making amongst senior staff by providing the time and space to develop ideas and discuss options.

  • Personal responsibility for action is increased by coaching, but by offering coaching, the organisation offers a support mechanism for staff.

Can coaching work for you?

If you would like to explore the impact coaching could have on your senior team and your business, I would love to have a chat. You can book a coffee below.


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