Executive Coaching

What is Executive Coaching? 

Coaching is a short-to-medium-term relationship between a manager or senior leader and a consultant (internal or external) with the purpose of improving performance (Douglas and McCauley, 1999). Coaching is not networking, mentoring, or therapy.

"Executive Coaching is designed to enhance organizational efficiency and productivity by accelerating leaders' growth and performance. Coaching engages leaders in customized ways tailored to their individuality. It is this customization that sets executive coaching apart from other leadership development opportunities." (Schidlow and Siders, 2014)

Executive Coaching vs. Mentoring


  • Mentors can sit at any level in the hierarchy.
  • Mentoring is an ongoing relationship that can last for an extended period of time.
  • Mentoring provides emotional support, feedback on how to improve, and other advice.

Executive Coaching

  • Executive Coaches are senior leaders who undergo extensive training and certification.
  • The Executive Coaching relationship is often shorter and generally has a set duration.
  • Executive Coaching aims to stimulate the coachee to uncover innate knowledge so he/she can achieve a sustainable result.

Looking for our Executive Coaching Training Program?


How do I obtain an Executive Coach?

To begin the process of securing an executive coach for yourself or a member of your team, division, or department:

        • Complete the Executive Coaching Intake Form. We will be in touch shortly. We understand the sensitive nature of many of these requests; all are treated as strictly confidential.
        • A brief follow-up meeting or phone call may take place where additional information is gathered. You will then be provided the names of two internal or U-M approved external executive coaches; at this point, you will select the coach you feel is the best match for your unique situation. Informational interviews can be conducted to further assess fit.

Please Note: Payment for an external executive coach generally comes from the recipient's departmental or discretionary funds. The Office of Faculty Development does not pay for executive coaching services, unless through specialty Scholars programs. 

View External Executive Coaches → 

If you wish to use a coach who is not already approved for this service through Procurement, please contact Laura Denton (dentonl@umich.edu) in Faculty Development and she will help to facilitate the process with the Procurement Office.

I’m an approved Executive Coach, how will I be matched with potential coachees?

Potential coachees will complete the Executive Coaching Intake Form, which will be reviewed by our office. A member of our staff will choose two potential coaches for the coachee to review, and ultimately, the coachee will choose the coach that they feel is the best match. Informational interviews may be conducted to further assess fit.

Coaching engagements with external coaches will be initiated by the coaching client. We do not encourage our external coaches to solicit new business opportunities with clients directly. 

If the external executive coach is listed on our website as an “Approved U-M Vendor,” the consultant/coach should create and submit a Task Order outlining the project, timeline, and agreed to fees to the department for review and the appropriate signatures prior to the start of services. Signed Task Orders should be forwarded to Procurement for assignment of a purchase order.  To find the appropriate Procurement Agent to forward to, see the Procurement website for these vendors.  Orders should be placed via ePro requisition.

If you have any questions, please contact Allison Romanowski at hartwica@umich.edu.