Why Government Agencies Should Budget for Executive Coaching
While big ticket issues such as immigration, social security and healthcare dominate political conversations everywhere, money, and the tug-of-war that surrounds budgeting it, is often where politicians spend most of their time.
As a result, typical federal, state and local government agencies are constantly poring through the numbers and weighing which programs and services to either cut funding for or cut altogether.
Naturally, as is the case when any budget needs to be trimmed, the least important stuff goes first, and if your agency has either been working with an executive coaching firm or are considering doing so, at first glance, it can seem like it’s a luxury that needs to be crossed off the list.
The truth is, though, research shows that the best executive coaching firms offer a ton value by helping agencies save on recruitment costs, increase employee engagement and develop better leaders.
In fact, one study found that organizations typically netted 7 times their original investment in coaching.
Let’s take a deep dive into why executive coaching might be one of the best programs in your budget.
Why Do Government Agencies Need Executive Coaching in the First Place?
If you’re asking this question, you’re either considering using an executive coaching firm or weary about the one you’re using. The primary function of executive coaching is to help train leaders to better connect with employees, as well as the agency’s mission as a whole.
The trickle-down effect from solid leadership leads to a wide-range of benefits, starting with helping agencies do a better job of engaging and retaining employees.
Studies show that just a little over half of government employees are happy with their senior leadership, a major factor that correlates to the fact that only 29% report that they are actively engaged in their jobs. That means over 70% could pretty much care less about the work they’re doing and only do the bare minimum to collect a paycheck.
The thing is, while some might argue that agencies with such low engagement rates have a hiring problem, the fact that executive coaching can help boost employee productivity by up to 88% suggests that strong leadership can inspire and motivate workers to work for more than just good benefits and job security.
How Strong Leadership Can Lead to Direct Savings
Having good leaders that drive high employee engagement is the foundation to retaining your people. Because of the rules, regulations and bureaucratic nature of government work, losing an employee -- especially a leader has serious and costly ramifications.
Research shows that losing an employee can cost approximately $25,000 per employee -- and, that’s if the employee was only making $40,000 per year. Naturally, the cost goes up as the salary does because the talent level increases. Replacing highly-educated executives can cost over twice their salaries, so if you wanted to replace an executive that makes $100,000, it would cost over $200,000.
While cost of replacing employees might simply sound like part of the cost of doing business, consider the fact that over the last few years, turnover rates in government, which have traditionally had some of the lowest across all sectors, have climbed alarmingly quickly to almost 20% annually.
That means, if you run an agency with 200 employees and lose even half of the average, that is, 10%, you still stand to pay over $500,000 in recruiting costs every single year. It’s finding that kind of money and putting it somewhere more useful that really serves the public.
Develop a “Next Man Up” Mentality
Of course, it’s only natural that employees and leadership are going to move on to different opportunities. The best executive coaching firms help create leadership pipelines by developing the next generation of executives from within.
The idea of the “next man up” is widely used in sports to get across the concept that when a team loses an important player, there are others waiting in the wings that are already prepared to step in and carry the torch.
Having a culture of succession in your government agency helps ease the transition from one leader to the next because it establishes continuity for employees. Plus, it cultivates a better sense of ownership for workers to know that it could be them up for next promotion.
Want to Learn More About Executive Coaching for Government Agencies?
If your agency is looking to trim the budget, it’s time to add executive coaching -- not cut it. Even on the conservative side, the best executive coaching firms can help you save hundreds of thousands dollars in revenue -- just by improving the way your workers work together.
Get started with a free consultation by contacting us at Info@DavidCouperConsulting.com.
Josh Espinosa is a freelance writer and designer. He also founded the Approachable Music project, a music education business on a mission to make learning to play easier and more efficient.