Coaching and Your Career Path: 10 Key Metrics

Coaching is one of the fastest growing industry sectors in the world. More and more people see the benefits of hiring a coach and more people are also looking to coaching as a viable career path in the fields of life coaching, health coaching and executive coaching.

So is coaching a viable career?


As coaching becomes more and more legitimised and its effectiveness measurable so too do the opportunities to live life doing something you love.

The International Coaching Federation in conjunction with Price Waterhouse Coopers have conducted global coaching studies the latest was published in 2020.

The studies provide fascinating snapshots of professional coaching and its growth worldwide.

Provided here is a high level summary of the 10 key takeaways of the studies.

1. How many people identify as a professional coach or use coaching skills in their leadership roles?

According to the ICF and PWCs 2020 report there are approximately 86,900 people who identify as being on the coaching continuum or in other words identify either as a coaching practitioner i.e an external or internal coach like an executive or life coach (71,000) or as managers/leaders who utilise coaching skills (15,900) to improve personal and organisational effectiveness.


Coaching Practitioners



2. How many of these coaches actually have clients?

Of the practitioner coaches a whopping 90% have active clients (according to the 2016 study)! The highest regions in the world with coaches with active clients is North America (92%) and Oceania (91%) and Western Europe (91%).

North America
Western Europe

3. What ages are professional coaches?

Coach practitioners (i.e. those who practice as an internal or external coach) are split fairly evenly between those under 50 years of age (46%) and those over 50 years of age (54%).

Of those 19% are aged 50 – 54 with around half of coaches aged between 45 and 59 years of age.

Mangers and leaders, those who utilse coaching skills in their professional roles, are a younger group with about half under 45 years of age.


of Managers/Leader are Under 45


of Coaching Practitioners are over 50

4. What is the gender of professional coaches?

Females account for 67% of coach practitioners and 66% of managers/leaders using coaching skills.

68% Female


70% Female

Coach Practitioners

5. What is the revenue and Income of professional coaches?

The global average earnings of practitioner coaches is $51, 000 USD.

Regionally the average earnings of coaches in Oceania is highest at $73,100 USD followed by North America at $61,900 USD.

The global revenue generated by practitioner coaches worldwide is estimated to be $2.356 billion USD!


Average Earnings (USD) Oceania


Revenue Generated by Coaches Worldwide

6. What Ages are Coaching Clients?

60% of clients ages as reported by Coaching Practitioners are below 45 years old.

7. What are the Professional Positions of Coaching Clients?

When asked to identify the positions held by all of their clients, two in three practitioners said they coach managers.

Executive (CEO, CFO etc.)
Business Owner/Entrepreneur
Personal Client
Team Leader
Staff Member

8. What are Future Obstacles to Coaches?

When asked to express the biggest hurdle over the next 12 months both coaching practitioners and managers/leaders who use coaching methodology both overwhelmingly felt that the main concern is untrained individuals who call themselves coaches.

9. What are Future Opportunities for Coaches?

The biggest opportunity in coaching as seen by the participants of the studies is the increased awareness of the benefits of coaching and the greater availability of data that makes a credible case for ROI that professional coaching brings.

10. Influencing Social Change

At Thought Coach we are passionate about coaching and the positive changes we know it can make in society.

And an overwhelming number of coaches surveyed also believed that coaching is able to influence social change. In fact both Coach practitioners and managers/leaders agree on this.

That leaves one final question for you – Will you be the change?

Start your coach journey with Thought Coach.


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