Home Marketing Trends The Marketing of Professional Coaching: An Eleven Year Perspective

The Marketing of Professional Coaching: An Eleven Year Perspective

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The Future of Executive Coaching:
Analysis from a Market Life Cycle Perspective

Where are we, where are we going, and how do we prepare for what’s next?

Sheila Maher, MA, MBA and Suzi Pomerantz, MT, MCC

[This article first appeared in the International Journal of Coaching in Organizations, 2003. Reprinted with permission of IJCO and Professional Coaching Publications, Inc.]

In launching this journal the editorial board envisioned that the journal would provide a forum for “reflection and analysis…by those leaders of this emerging field who recognize coaching to be a fixture rather than a fad…”  This article explores the market life cycle of executive coaching, considering its history and growth, and estimating its current position.  We discuss the four stages of the market life cycle:  product introduction, market growth, market maturity, and sales decline, exploring the implications for our profession of each stage. Understanding where coaching is in the market cycle allows us to consider strategies to stimulate the continued growth of the profession. In this article we present our thesis that “this emerging field” is actually already in the mature stage of its lifecycle and we make recommendations for moving the profession forward.

It is clear that coaching is not a fad and it is not new. Coaching is rooted in a range of philosophies and practices that can be traced back to Aristotle, Buddhist thought, Gestalt theory, and various gurus of ontology and business. It predates Anthony Robbins, Stephen Covey, Tom Peters, Thomas Leonard and Ken Blanchard. The taxonomy of executive coaching includes an array of ancient and modern wisdom woven together in a unique tapestry designed to produce real results in real time for busy executives and leaders.

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