Effectiveness and Return on Investment of a leadership development programme

IES was commissioned to evaluate the effectiveness of a development initiative for emerging leaders during 2010/11. The programme aimed to develop a community of senior leaders into executive coaches who, once trained, would provide coaching to emerging leaders. The programme targeted under-represented groups in the NHS – including clinical, black and minority ethnic, and women.

Our evaluation framework measured the effectiveness of the programme in a number of ways:

  • the process of delivery
  • the personal impact for senior leader coaches and emerging leader coachees
  • and the organisational outcomes.

Through a focus on Return on Investment (RoI) at the individual level within two regions we identified costs and verified some financial benefits to the NHS (eg a £110,000 benefit from one coachee through cost savings being achieved early), quantifiable benefits to patients (eg significant care quality improvements) and an estimated return of 5.6 times investment. We also noted that 98 per cent of the programme cost in one region was paid back through just one successful coaching relationship.