Robert, the branch director of a national accounting firm, had an opportunity to work with an executive coach and was delighted with his results. From communication skills and emotional intelligence to executive presence, Robert grew his leadership skills in a significant way.

As Robert’s leadership vision and skills developed he couldn’t help notice that the attitudes and behaviors of his peers reflected his “old self.” Working in an environment where other branch directors were not behaving in alignment with good communication, emotional intelligence, and leadership practices, Robert realized that it would be a challenge to sustain and build upon his improved leadership skills — and help his company.

“We should all be singing the same song in the same key,” thought Robert, “but everyone is singing differently. What if every branch director could take part in an executive coaching engagement? We’d improve our individual leadership skills and, as a group, sound like we’re singing from the same sheet of music. Imagine how much more productive, focused — and happy — we would be!”

It’s a great idea. And it exists.

“There’s a tremendous amount that can be achieved by intelligently combining executive coaching with group work,” said Maren Perry, president of Arden Coaching. “The focus is on individual development but it’s accomplished in both group settings and one-on-one sessions. Then, we align individual goals with that of the company. It moves the needle for individuals as well as the organization.”

The idea is to offer a structured program to a larger group of people, typically at the same level of the organization — for example, all of the branch managers nationally at Robert’s accounting firm. The program includes a group component — a series of workshops that develop performance and leadership skills collectively — and a staggered series of one-on-one executive coaching sessions during and following the group work for each person in the cohort. For more, read, “Executive Coaching in a Group Setting Achieves Big Results.”

“The big benefit is that everyone is on the same page,” notes Perry. “Robert is no longer an outlier trying to apply his leadership skills in an organization that doesn’t get it. All the branch directors are using the same language, applying the same practices, and moving forward together with improved skill sets.”

Called the Arden Leadership Academy at Arden Coaching, the program revolves around a DiSC assessment, building emotional intelligence and leadership skills, providing expert feedback, and developing personal action plans.

In addition, the program can be customized to meet the needs of the company. For example, if the company is especially concerned about building innovation skills, or working with its branch directors to better handle difficult conversations, specific modules can be included in the program. In addition to providing individualized executive coaching with organization-wide benefits, the combination of group work and select one-on-one coaching makes it more affordable.

“Group and individual coaching is a powerful combination,” adds Perry. “This approach allows us to have multiple touches for the learning and embeds the work into the daily lives of all participants.” To read more, “Combine Group Training with Individual Coaching for Exceptional Results: The Arden Leadership Academy.”

First thing tomorrow, Robert’s going to bring this up with his SVP.

To learn more about executive coaching in a group setting and the Arden Leadership Academy, contact Arden Coaching at info@ardencoaching.com or 646.684.3777.