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I tried the hottest new perk on the market: Executive coaching

Protocol Workplace

Welcome back to our Workplace newsletter. Today: a look inside the premium benefit more employees are being offered at work, what’s happening over at Coinbase and the latest findings on the four-day workweek.

— Amber Burton, reporter (email | twitter)

Executive coaching for all

We’re back! And today, we’re taking a deep dive into one of the hottest corporate benefits on the market at the moment: executive coaching. Except it’s no longer just about the executives. More companies are providing access to coaching as a benefit at every level of the organization.

Leaders know that in order to stay competitive in today’s still-hot job market, it pays to offer more personalized and exclusive perks. That being said, career and personal development companies everywhere are seeing a windfall. Tech companies ranging from Meta to Zendesk have deployed coaching services to swaths of employees.

  • Coaching platform Ezra is one of the many companies that has seen a major boost from the new interest in offering more personalized perks. This year alone, Ezra is expected to deliver about 250,000 coaching sessions in 86 countries to a variety of different types of groups within organizations.
  • “I think part of the reason why coaching and all of these companies are getting into this space is because, as human beings, we are so used to having everything completely personalized. And yet, when we turn up in our office, most of the stuff we do is not personalized,” said Nick Goldberg, founder and CEO of Ezra.
  • One of the companies that has embraced coaching services as a benefit is Envoy, a workplace tech company. It’s dove in headfirst, allowing its employees to choose what career development support they feel they need most. The company offers all its workers access to an L&D credit that can be spent on any executive coaching service or learning development.

What can you expect to get out of offering coaching to your employees?

  • The services, though still very much an effective tool for career development, are really being leveraged more as a secret weapon for engagement and retention. While many companies are employing coaching to solve leadership challenges related to DEI, change management and leadership development, it turns out it’s also a proven way to get employees to stick around.
  • Coaching service Torch found in its own data that employees who’ve had coaching have a 38% higher retention rate and teams are 15% more engaged compared to their uncoached cohort.
  • Torch also did a case study with Zendesk after it kicked off a leadership development program aimed at training employees and managers to address the challenges experienced by underrepresented talent in the workplace. What they found: 91% of participants saw an increase in their motivation to take on more responsibility and own their careers.

After learning all of this, I wanted to find out for myself what employees can expect from these cushy new services and benefits hitting the market. A couple of weeks ago I did a trial with Skye, a coaching marketplace with a majority female user and coaching base.

  • So, full disclosure: I’ve been to therapy (highly recommend this to all). I mention this because I thought I should be good at this whole coaching thing! Spilling my guts to a stranger? Easy! But the first thing you learn in coaching is that this is NOT therapy. It may look and sound a lot like it, but your coach does not want to know your deepest, darkest secrets.
  • What they do want: for you to show up and be honest about your values as they relate to your career so they can better help with your development.
  • With Skye, I started by filling out a profile in which I had to identify my core values to be matched with an appropriate coach for my career and development goals. I then participated in a virtual consultation with Skye’s co-founder Jessica Wolf to do further reflection to find out just what type of coach I needed. While I thought I needed a straightforward career coach to help me figure out how to be an even better journalist and employee (you’re welcome, editors), it turns out I was actually much more in need of a coach who could help me focus on clarity and honing all my ideas.
  • So how did the actual session go? Though it’s not therapy, it is very much an intimate and personalized conversation. I spoke with my chosen coach for an hour, engaging in self-reflection exercises and identifying my values and the work that ignites my interests.
  • The one unexpected hang-up I had was moderating just how much I thought I should share. This is probably something that will give many employees pause. Though there are confidentiality agreements with coaches on all the platforms, it’s natural to be concerned that some information could get back to your bosses if they are the ones paying for it (though every service I spoke to guaranteed strict confidentiality).
  • Last, though the focus is professional, the coaching sessions do venture into the personal. Many coaches want to know more about your personal life to better understand how you approach various situations and challenges at work. I personally welcomed this, but it might not be for everyone.
  • Overall, I’m a fan of this trendy new benefit and left my coaching session more energized and focused than before joining the call. Hold on while I go ask my HR rep if I can renew my subscription.

— Amber Burton, reporter (email | twitter)

Coinbase employees target top execs

Coinbase employees took a big swing last week and launched a now-deleted petition to remove three top leaders at the company over actions "that have led to questionable results." The petition, titled "Operation Revive COIN,” was first published on and called for Chief Operating Officer Emilie Choi, Chief Product Officer Surojit Chatterjee and Chief People Officer LJ Brock to be fired. The list of complaints spanned a number of failed plans and controversial decisions at Coinbase, ranging from its struggling NFT marketplace to the decision to rescind job offers.

CEO Brian Armstrong responded to the petition in a series of tweets, reprimanding those who publicly shared the petition and calling the demands "really dumb on multiple levels.”

"There is probably lots we can be doing better, but if you're at a place where you want to leak stuff externally then it's time for you to go. You're hurting yourself and those around you," he said.

Read the full story.


Full-stack observability with business context enables companies to digest IT performance to easily identify where they can prioritize performance and tackle issues that strategically impact their bottom line. This correlation of technology and business data allows IT leaders to make smarter, strategic decisions based on actual business impact.

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Did somebody say 4-day workweek?

Workers want a four-day workweek, claiming that they’ll be more productive if they get one. This is according to 400 workers who use Ladders, a career site that focuses solely on jobs that pay over $100,000.

  • 90% of workers would “prefer” a four-day workweek.
  • 84% of workers said they’d be more productive with a four-day workweek.
  • 79% of workers said they’ve already left a job or would leave a job for a company with a four-day workweek policy.
VC firm Initialized Capital recently suggested that startups could avoid layoffs by moving to a four-day workweek and cutting 20% of pay. Not so fast. 78% of those surveyed disagreed with the statement: “I did/would settle for lower compensation for a 4-day work week job.” Find out what experts say about whether a four-day workweek will work for your company.

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Elon Musk is far from alone in his opinion about the need to return to offices.

FTC Chair Lina Khan said companies need to think more about how their mergers and acquisitions affect working conditions.

Salesforce’s employees are divided on the company’s work with law enforcement.


Organizations that have already started the move to a full-stack observability approach are seeing results and clear return on investment (ROI). In the AppDynamics research, 86% of technologists reported greater visibility across their IT stack over the last 12 months when implementing full-stack

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Around the internet

A roundup of workplace news from the farthest corners of the internet.

This company claims to be “extremely recession-proof,” but also just laid off 10% of its workforce.

Related: Is a 10% reduction of staff really a layoff? This VC says no. The workers that don’t work there anymore might think differently.

RTO isn’t working.

Dog beds for the workplace, but for workers to nap in.

Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to Have a great day, see you Tuesday.

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