Purpose - Executive coaching is gaining in popularity as a management developmental activity which facilitates organisational change for sustainability. The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationships among coachee feedback receptivity, pre-training motivation, learning goal orientation, developmental self-efficacy, self-reported job performance improvement, self-awareness, task performance and affective commitment in terms of executive coaching effectiveness as a form of management development. Design/methodology/approach - A non-randomised controlled trial research design was conducted to examine the hypothesized relationships among coachee characteristics and executive coaching effectiveness, as reflected in greater levels of individual outcomes in corporate Israel. Findings - A significant interaction between learning goal orientation and pre-training motivation on improvement in job self-reported performance was found. Additionally, a negative relationship was found between learning goal orientation and improvement in self-reported job performance among coachees with low levels of pre-training motivation. Finally, self-efficacy demonstrates a positive relationship with job performance improvement. Originality/value - This research provides greater insights about the type of individual outcomes executive coaching should achieve, and under which conditions coaching is likely to be more beneficial for participants. This research has value for designing and implementing coaching programmes to drive sustainable development and innovation.