Why do top level, successful executives need a coach?

Marshall Goldsmith
3 min readFeb 4, 2022

Whether you are super successful or just starting out, the one thing you need to super charge your career in today’s world is an executive coach. Learn why in this week’s Newsletter.

Jim Masters: People watching may say, “Well, gee, these names of these people at these top executive levels that you just mentioned, and it’s just a few of hundreds of them that you’ve worked with and coach, and continue to coach, why would they need coaching? They’re already at these top levels. What is it about the work that they do where coaching and getting expertise from somebody at your level is essential and beneficial for them?”

Dr. Marshall Goldsmith: Great question, and one thing I’m really proud of in my new book Triggers is that 27 major CEOs endorsed that book. Why I’m so proud was 30 years ago, most of them wouldn’t admit to having a coach. They would have been ashamed to have a coach. Today, these are 27 people saying, “I do have a coach. I’m trying to get help.” Well, if you think about that question, how many of the top 10 tennis players have coaches? They all do. Well, why shouldn’t they have a coach? You know, they’re trying to help themselves get better, and I coach them either to help themselves get better, or maybe to develop that next level of leadership, to help them get better. So I’m very proud of the fact that coaching used to be something that was really seen as if you have a problem, and now I’ve really focused on helping successful people get even better.

Jim: What I love about it too, and having interviewed you prior to even this broadcast is your passion and your enthusiasm, and that’s essential, right? People gravitate to people when they sense sincerity, credibility, but a real thirst and passion for the work that they do, which you have. And that translates to the relationship and the trust that you build. Trust is as an essential ingredient in all this, isn’t it?

Marshall: Well in my job, it is, because you can imagine the inside knowledge that I get on a regular basis, right?

Jim: Right.

Marshall: So it’s very important to have a very positive relationship with people. The other reality is there’s an old saying called, “It’s lonely at the top.” It’s a very true saying. The higher up you go, the fewer people you actually have to talk to, and one nice thing about my coaching job is, not only do I talk with my clients, I have them talk with each other. And so…

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Marshall Goldsmith

My mission is simple. I want to help successful people achieve positive, lasting change in behavior; for themselves, their people, and their teams.