Although executive coaches have long been used in the private sector to help business leaders increase their effectiveness, the public sector has only recently begun to invest in executive coaching as a way to retain high-potential leaders and to help local government leaders excel. Executive coaches help managers not only to define and achieve their professional or business goals, but also to link those goals to the needs of the organization and the public. They help managers create a leadership plan that strives for specific and measurable results, and they hold their clients accountable for achieving those results and increasing their effectiveness.
As today’s public leaders are being asked to excel in ways that far surpass the scope of public leadership just a few years ago and as more city managers will be retiring over the next few years, executive coaches will become increasingly important in the development of younger leaders. This report explains how local government leaders can benefit from working with an executive coach, what they can expect, and how they can get started.
About the authors
This report was written by Donna Zajonc, PCC, Mary Jo Asmus, ACC, and David C. Latshaw, SPHR, CPCC. Donna Zajonc is a credentialed executive coach, a former Oregon state legislator, and author of The Politics of Hope: Reviving the Dream of Democracy (www.politicsofhope.com). She especially enjoys working with elected leaders to improve council and manager relations. Mary Jo Asmus is a credentialed executive coach who works extensively with local government managers. She is also president of Aspire Collaborative Services, LLC, a firm specializing in leadership solutions (www.aspire-cs.com). David C. Latshaw is a former city manager, credentialed executive coach, and current member of both ICMA and the Arizona City/County Management Association. He is president of Latshaw & Associates, LLC (www.latshawassociates.com), which works exclusively with local governments to advance councilmanager relations and performance.
(2008, vol. 40, no. 3)