Case Study: New in Role

Gumball Enterprises utilized their executive coaching to help their client advance from CFO to CEO, and how they measured the engagement’s return on investment.


The Situation 

One of GumballEnterprises’ corporate clients are headquartered on the beautiful island of Bermuda.  They continue to grow globally through acquisition, and recently needed a new CEO in Europe to run their international operation.

The company was looking for the right leader regardless of an internal or external hire.  Their existing CFO however, was a potential candidate so with the support of the company, their CFO chose a coach to help him and the company assess his readiness and interest for the position.

In addition to the company assessing the CFO’s qualification, the CFO was also contemplating the fit for himself, including whether a promotion would suite him, his career, and his personal family commitments. 

The candidate was clearly aware of the vast differences in title and responsibilities.  He took the six-month coaching engagement very seriously and vetted his coaches wisely.  GumballEnterprises was honored with the task of helping the CFO decide if he wanted the CEO role, and if so, help prepare him for the CEO position if the company chose to move forward with him.

Because both he and the company were assessing interest and readiness, we also worked with the leader of Human Resources to ensure the process was thorough and the company’s return on investment was assessed.


The Solution 

Given the goal to determine a ‘right fit for advancement’ for both the candidate and the company, we engaged in a six-month coaching agreement with 12 formal coaching sessions and on-going email correspondence as needed between sessions. 

Together we set goals that addressed his personal needs, the needs of the business, the needs of his team, and the needs of his family.  All goals were in direct alignment with the ultimate outcome goal that was set for the 6-month coaching engagement. The outcome goal that was set was, Within 6 months decide to, or not to, be CEO.  If deciding to apply for the role, then be recognized by the company as the most qualified and viable candidate whom they would end up hiring by the end of the year.   

We implemented additional supporting goals to ensure our client was shifting from working IN his business as a CFO, to working ON the overall business of the company as a CEO.  As the CFO practiced this shift, it enabled him to feel what it might be like to be in the role of CEO as he was assessing his desire.  The company was also able to see the CFO demonstrate CEO-like behaviors, thus making it easier for the company to assess his readiness.   


The Outcome

In this case, assessing the return on investment was fairly easy given the outcome goal was achieved. Both the company and leader decided the role was a good fit for the CFO.  The CFO decided to apply for the job, he was also recognized as a viable candidate by the company and was ultimately hired for the role. 

We assessed the return on the company’s investment and asked the HR leader how much it would have cost to hire someone from outside the organization for the CEO role.  It was estimated that recruiting costs would have been 33% of the CEO’s salary plus the time, (4 to 6 months) of onboarding and training for the new hire to ramp up.

Overall the return on the company’s investment was over 600% return in savings, saved onboarding time, a succession plan, and a proposed strategy for the organization when he stepped into the role. Today the CFO has fully transitioned into the CEO role and is successfully executing on the business. 

Assessing the ROI of coaching not only justifies our clients’ money, it also provides us the opportunity to write and share our stories of success that are backed up with data which gives our work the credibility new clients are looking for. Visit our COACHING page to see how our coaching programs can benefit you and your organization or contact us below for a free consultation!