Coaching: client factors & contextual dynamics in the change process: A qualitative meta-synthesis

Tünde Erdös*, Erik de Haan, Stefan Heusinkveld

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Context-sensitivity appears to be a key factor in developing the knowledge base of coaching as a change process. As an alternative perspective to the more widely held cause–effect explanations on coaching, this view puts the focus on clients and their contexts as integral to understanding how coaching might work and why it is effective. In response to general limitations of quantitative and mixed-method approaches to understanding the contribution of client factors and contextual factors in coaching effectiveness, our systematic meta-synthesis of 110 peer-reviewed qualitative studies identifies the client factors and contextual conditions that have been proposed to affect when and how clients engage in effective coaching. In mapping clients’ intrapersonal and interpersonal dynamics in coaching, the Integrative Relationship Model introduced in this meta-synthesis interprets the possible influence of these dynamics on clients’ change process through the uniquely integrative lens of qualitative studies. This integrative perspective appears necessary to give quantitative researchers future directions in how to investigate coaching effectiveness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-183
Number of pages22
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • change process
  • client factors
  • Coaching
  • contextual dynamics


Dive into the research topics of 'Coaching: client factors & contextual dynamics in the change process: A qualitative meta-synthesis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this