Does leadership development pay dividends?


Knowing whether the funds and resources you invest in your people will help your effectiveness and sustainability is important.

Here we gather just some of the facts that we have accumulated so far on this topic.


  • The report Learning for Purpose which focuses just on the Australian nonprofit sector found that for each $1 spent on developing people, there is a return of around $6 in terms of income and impact. The project is a ground breaking, national research program that investigates capacity building through professional development for the Australian Not-for-Profit sector. The aim is to systematically understand, evaluate, and improve the means through which individuals and organisations gain and sustain the key competencies for realising social change. Download the full report.


  • The work of the major US philanthropic foundation, the Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr Fund found that when executive directors were provided with coaching and leadership development they moved to becoming highly successful in meeting stretching goals for their organisations.  Their objectives were in the areas of scale, income, service realignment and advocacy impact. To get all the details read the full report.


  • A study by Olivero, Bane and Kopelman of healthcare professionals found that a training intervention with managers increased productivity by 22%, but adding a one-to-one (8-week) coaching program after the training pushed productivity to 88%. Olivero, G., Bane, K.D., and Kopelman, R.E. (Winter, 1997). Executive coaching as a transfer of training tool: Effects on productivity in a public agency.


Our experience is certainly that professional development creates real and tangible business outcomes.

We will keep adding to this list as we come across relevant and useful studies. If you have comments or thoughts, please contact us. We’d love to hear from you!


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