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Péter Generál & Zoltán Csigás & Dr Olga Kiss

Does ROI really measure the effectiveness of executive or business coaching?

Theme: Coaching in context
Area: Coaching
Type: Research and how to apply it in practice

Session on Thursday, Jul 7th, 16:50
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Péter Generál, PCC, has more than 14,000 hours training and some 2,500 hours coaching experience mostly with executives, senior managers and high potentials in Europe, ranging from middle management to CEO level. In the last 7-8 years he has worked with Management and Leadership development of Managers and managerial teams for local and International companies such as: AstraZeneca, AVIS Budget Group BSC, Bombardier, LeasePlan, Le Cheque Dejeuner, Nutricia, Generali Group, Velux among others.

Zoltán Csigás has a background in psychology, with an MA obtained at ELTE, Budapest and with current PhD studies. He builds his practice on several years of consulting experience that he has gained in different fields (e.g. PR, HR, OD). For more than seven years he has been working with GROW Group, a Budapest based OD consultancy firm, where he holds the position of Research Director. He was elected EMCC International VP of Research in 2015.

Dr Olga Kiss, PhD, studies and teaches philosophy of science and methodology at the Budapest Corvinus University, while she’s a coach and director at Goldarc Ltd. She’s been a member of the Board of EMCC Hungary since its formation in 2008. This year she plans to create a research hub there.


Return on investment (ROI) is essential in business. The ROI of executive coaching – according to some global researches – is amazing: 700-1,000%. Fabulous return with relatively low risk. Why don’t coaches use ROI more to show the effectiveness of coaching?

Our first answer is methodological. Although the formula of ROI is simple, to measure the exact value of variables is not easy at all. Estimates, especially in a changing environment are not reliable. Even more, there is no common, standardised way to calculate ROIs of different coaching processes at different companies to compare them.

The second, and more important answer is about values. Putting ROI into the focus suggests that the main value coaching delivers is financial. But coaching can produce values like happiness, better work-life balance, higher satisfaction with life, joy, creativity, spiritual development, etc. Why pay for them in executive coaching?

Shall we, coaches, show the connection between humanistic values and productivity? Are they always connected? What about situations in which at the end we deliver value to the coachee but not – or not directly – to the sponsor? Shall we expect that the final goal of every business should be to grow happíness on Earth?

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