These Q&As originate from genuine questions asked by clients, colleagues and interested passers-by. My straightforward responses provide up to date news on key issues and provide further insight on how I view the world and the service I provide. Please feel free to join the conversation – ask any question you have via the contact box below or get in touch for a commitment-free conversation…
What is coaching (as opposed to mentoring or advising)?
Coaching is very distinct from other practitioner/client based services because a coach doesn’t offer advice. Instead, my role as a coach is to help create the conditions for insight and realisation. Self-development guru, Mark Allen says to achieve the life we want to live we need to “dare to dream and then deal with the doubts and fears” and that is exactly what I help my clients to do.
The coaching process is often life-changing because the client begins to realise they had the answer all along and they begin to trust their innate wisdom. When that happens the coach/client relationship becomes truly powerful. As Syd Banks, whose understanding of how the mind works underpins my coaching approach, said: “With hope and faith as beacons, anything is possible”.
What is your coaching style?
I use a unique blend of coaching, mentoring and teaching to create the conditions for insight and realisation. This is achieved through careful listening, gentle (and yet powerful) questioning and the setting of appropriate challenges. The client feels valued, safe and empowered.
My coaching philosophy is based on my belief that every person has the capacity to be successful – sometimes they just need a little help along the way. My definition of success isn’t about crossing the finishing line first (unless, of course, that is the client’s specific goal); but rather it is about the individual discovering that they like who they are, what they do and how they do it.* My trust in the absolute power of the human spirit underpins everything that I do.
*Based on a quotation from American poet, Maya Angelou.
Who do you coach?
The majority of my clients are teachers, or work within the education or physical activity sectors, but I welcome the opportunity to work with people from all walks of life. You will find some case studies on the next page – these are clients who are happy to share the impact that coaching has had with others. The common denominator is that most of the clients I work with are searching for the answer to questions such as ‘What should I do with my life?’ or ‘How do I achieve x, y or z?’
Do coaches have coaches?
Absolutely! Including me. Over the last few years I’ve had several coaches who have helped me in specific areas of my life and business. I have found the process to be inspiring and I always leave a session feeling empowered in some way. I enjoy having my voice heard and I appreciate having someone listening to me and challenging me. It has also proven to me, over and over again, how powerful the coaching process is. I can put my hand on heart and say that the results and impact far outweigh other forms of personal and professional development.
How much does coaching cost?
It is difficult to give a precise answer to this question because each coaching package is tailor-made for the individual. The process begins with one or two commitment-free conversations during which we get to know each other. This is when the client begins to experience the impact that coaching can have. Once we are clear on whether we want to work together, we develop a proposal and take things from there.