Coaching to nurture women to become leaders

Coaching for women

Leadership coaching helps women enhance their performance, efficiency, and well-being. While navigating their career, most women wonder if coaching is necessary for their leadership. These women are educated, ambitious, and successful. But, despite their achievements, there are events where they think a map could help them prevent career pitfalls and choose the more straightforward path to the position they wish to acquire.

Such women know that they will face distinctive challenges in the workplace. They know that with the right strategy, they can move past those challenges and gain a career where they can use their skills, find work-life balance, and achieve better success levels.

This is where leadership coaching comes into action.

Companies are focusing better on equity and establishing a culture of equal treatment for all genders. They are investing in developing a diversity, belongingness, equality, and inclusion culture. They are recruiting, supporting, retaining, and promoting women leaders.  Coaching helps companies inculcate a culture of diversity, inclusiveness and belongingness. With the right leadership coaching, companies can maintain a workplace culture that helps with easy onboarding, retaining, engagement and support of women leaders.

Table of Contents

Why is coaching essential to building women leaders?

  • Coaching women leaders is essential as it enhances their confidence and work relationship, which can be two barriers preventing them from reaching their goals.
  • Leadership coaching has gained popularity as they help leaders reach their true potential. Everyone has unique skills, so choosing customized coaching styles to meet client’s needs is essential.

Coaching for women leaders

    • As per a study on women leaders who attained coaching, leadership coaching helps improve self-confidence, self-leadership, self-awareness, and personal life. 
    • Coaching women leaders is a distinctive approach to dealing with gender equality at the medium and upper-management levels.

Initially and traditionally, women never had equal opportunities in work, and some were still done. Though women are well-represented in low-level job positions, they have fewer chances of getting promoted to management than men.

Women at workplace

As per McKinsey reports, only 87 women are promoted for every 100 men promoted, which led to 62% of men being managers, as compared to 38% of women managers. The same study states that a significant reason for this is the responsibilities women had to deal with at home. It makes them mix their work and home lives, making work an almost double shift. This may not impact their work performance directly, but benefits like flexible working and WFH state that women may not be as invested in their careers as males. 

Leadership coaching for women reduces stress and inspires motivation, boosting their coping skills to handle the dual work pressure without impacting their performance.

Shift in organizational perspective with coaching

The women in companies add to half of its talent pipeline, from the front line to executives. This is why organizations intentionally invest in coaching and retaining talented women leaders. While providing leadership coaching to women can help companies advance talented women in executive and leadership positions, this has also brought a significant shift in organizational perspective.

A focus on organizational culture, teamed with leadership coaching, has made a significant difference. It has helped women navigate challenges and get ready for challenging roles. Coaching offers a secure environment to women for self-awareness, and clarity, syncs objectives with intentions, promotes work-life balance and develops a strategic network. It teaches and trains the coachees to align their goals with the companies and helps them gain self-confidence and awareness, helping developing a robust and happy workplace culture.

Why is coaching women at all levels important?

Compared to non-coaching employees, employees who receive coaching gain better compensation, have more promotions, and feel happier with their careers. 

  1. Initial career growth

When women begin their careers, it is essential to find direction. Coaching helps women outline objectives and achieve them. They also evaluate their strengths to develop and the pitfalls such as groupism, office politics, etc. to avoid.

It further helps women prevent falling prey to politics and getting misdirected when they have a coach to help them integrate efficiently into the company.

2. Stumbling blocks

Every individual bears burdens that have the potential to impede their progress. These burdens could include inherent personality characteristics that make it challenging to advocate for oneself, strive for success, or progress in their career. Women may engage in self-defeating behaviors or allow others to exploit them, often without recognizing the issue. Coaching helps women regulate their feelings and work with the facts to deal with the imposter syndrome. It helps change a coachee’s mindset about their abilities.

To address these challenges, a leadership coach can provide a neutral perspective, offering a more detailed and honest view of the situation. They can help women in gaining higher confidence in their work and facing the challenges that come their way. Coaches can assist women in stretching their limits, making changes, and liberating themselves from constraints to grow into the leaders they aspire to be.

3. Mid-career growth

Experienced women leaders in business usually become skilled, self-assured, and respected and adapt well to their organizational framework. However, a leadership coach can challenge their comfort and stimulate new growth by facilitating goal-setting and mapping the path to advancement. Through coaching, women can prepare for top-tier leadership, develop an executive presence for virtual meetings, mentor and guide team members, and navigate transitions effectively. Coaching helps mid-career growth women leaders to gain self-awareness and facilitate better progress towards their goals. 

4. Leadership

As women progress closer to the upper echelons of leadership, the challenges of competition and resistance intensify. Developing refined skill sets and expanding influence become critical factors for success. What led women to their current level may not suffice for top leadership positions.

To address these challenges, a leadership coach can assist women in shifting from a hands-on to a big-picture perspective. By cultivating executive presence qualities and essential leadership skills, coaches can guide women toward becoming critical players in their organization and the most viable candidate for the top position.

5. Top leadership

Women in top leadership positions often struggle to find trustworthy individuals who can evaluate their leadership effectiveness, ensuring they are well-balanced and employing the best possible practices in delegation, oversight, and management.

A leadership coach can provide impartial feedback to fill this gap. Being external to the organization, their sole allegiance is to their client, and they can offer innovative techniques and knowledge to help them stay at the forefront of their field. Through this feedback and support, women leaders can continue to refine their skills and remain in top form.

How can coaching help women stay motivated and perform better in their roles?

As per ICF, 61% of people with coaching noticed a positive effect on personal organization, and 57% noticed a positive effect on time management. 

Most businesses choose to coach their women managers and executives as they understand that it would bring the add to their diverse workforce and help them thrive. They further understood that coaching provides women a safe haven to stay honest while getting all the support they need.

Leadership coaching is suggested for:

  • Senior women leaders who wish to take the next step in their careers. Women at the top of their game see coaching as an opportunity to explore and ensure they can lead their careers efficiently.
  • High-potential women leaders who wish to boost their engagement invest in coaching to unlock their potential and continue to develop while remaining devoted to their organization’s success.
  • Women targeting succession planning consider coaching an opportunity to refine their required skills while moving ahead.

Leadership coaching is not expenditure- it is a need-to-do investment to ensure women leaders acquire their highest potential.

The women receiving coaching grew better, accomplishing higher results in self-awareness, physical thriving, leadership, and employee work experience.

Effective coaching further:

  • Helps women acquire a plan, objective, and vision: If female leaders collaborate with a coach, they can express their thoughts aloud and more effectively communicate their vision. Once a clear vision is established, an efficient strategy and objectives can be developed. Many coaches conduct regular coaching sessions with their clients, creating a steady rhythm that enables them to identify action steps and milestones that their clients can concentrate on while also ensuring that the coach helds them responsible.
  • Works as a thought companion: A proficient coach strives to comprehend their client’s work surroundings, including their roles, responsibilities, and all essential stakeholders with whom they interact regularly. When a coach comprehends their client’s ecosystem, they can suggest actions that align with desired outcomes. These outcomes may encompass improved conflict management abilities, increased self-assurance in boardroom settings, or effective networking practices that enhance their client’s career outlook.
  • Improves self-awareness: Most coaches offer assessments to their clients to increase their understanding of their strengths, weaknesses and restricting behaviors. Coaches also excel in listening attentively. By focusing on significant themes and concepts that their clients communicate, they can recognize patterns that their clients may not fully realize or identify self-limiting behaviors that may serve as an internal obstacle for the client to overcome, such as low confidence or elements of imposter syndrome.

Coaching helps women navigate and climb the corporate ladder and justify their leadership skills

What’s intriguing is that when women are asked to assess their leadership abilities, they score less than their male colleagues.

Leadership coaches recognize this. Coaching female leaders is different than coaching men leaders, as women have different issues at their workplace. APA suggests that two things prevent women from gaining confidence to become bossy women. 

  • Varied work settings
  • Workplaces with male bosses

Forbes states that coaching women can boost awareness, help handle business politics, and allow them to climb the corporate ladder easily. Developing women who are medium-level associates further adds to their progression. as stated before, only 28% of managers are women, so if coaching raises this count, you will see more women role models and diversity at the top level. Lastly, coaching is also known to boost well-being, performance, and satisfaction, especially when women undergo more scrutiny at higher organizational levels.

According to a Catalyst study, companies with a higher number of women in the top management register 42% higher return on sales than companies with the lowest number of women on the board.

Coaching helps foster gender-inclusive offices

With coaching being used to acknowledge equality, it can be an excellent way to develop inclusive workspaces. For example, as per research, subjective performance reviews explain up to 50% of the promotional gaps. A coach can help deal with performance subjectivity reviews and impact the company to restructure their bias processes.

Coaching can further deal with barriers like low self-worth and confidence that women sometimes face. It works as an effective tool to enhance self-confidence for professionals at all levels.

The ROI for Women Coaching

While coaching is not tangible, you may not witness concrete results. However, studies and research state the power of coaching. ROI means Return on Investment simply stating that the investment done is worth good returns.

Coaching has shown phenomenal improvement and in 2019, the international revenue was $2.849 billion. In simple words, research reveals that coaching positively affects women by offering them confidence, self-awareness, and self-worth, boosting their job satisfaction and well-being. Organizational coaching causes a ripple impact that optimistically impacts close colleagues of coached employees and broadly benefits the company.

When companies go for inclusiveness and gender diversity campaigns by choosing women in leadership coaching programs, they generate the results given below:

  • 57% witness better business results
  • 75% noticed a rise in profit by 25%
  • 54% of companies witness creativity, better reputation, and innovation
  • Many companies witness low employee turnover

So, with women leadership, companies have witnessed exceptional profit and business results. It is a good way to enhance the creativity aspect of an organization. 

Conclusion: uExcelerate and Women Leadership Program

Coaching for women positively affects their personal growth and their company’s growth. At uExcelerate, we understand the systemic barriers and disparities women face and help transform the workplace with practical women leadership coaching programs.

Our aim  is to inculcate coaching culture foster diverse communities making the workplace gender-inclusive- where people of all genders are welcome. Our coaching programs promote women growth and empowerment, generating organizational change and bringing better business outcomes.

We use customized coaching program – Pace coaching program to train women leaders and employees with external or internal coaching to advance their learning journey.

Our exclusive women leadership coaching program equips women leaders of all levels and departments with the tools to effectively collaborate with colleagues from diverse backgrounds. The program aims to develop their DE&I managing skills, foster mutual support, and establish a secure, empathetic, and inclusive work environment that acknowledges and values the contributions of all team members. The programme focuses on tackling all the obstacles for women leaders. To learn more about the program, download the brochure.

Fatima Hussain

Fatima Hussain