Pragmatic advice for coaches, managers & leaders

A point in time

Coaching for improved business performance is about helping people achieve results. Through encouraging creation of goals and targets, removing barriers to success and building robust plans, the coach helps the ‘client’ (person you are coaching) progress. Note that the emphasis is on progress. It should move things forwards. Indeed coaching conversations should have the majorityContinue Reading

Screeching halt

“Ok, so it looks like we’re done then, doesn’t it?” This leading question, or a version of it, is something I frequently hear new manager-coaches say when they think that enough has been covered and plans have been finalised. The problem is … well, actually there are just so many problems associated with this approach,Continue Reading

Don’t use a checklist

I want to alert you to a common trap that those new – and not so new – to using a coaching approach can fall into. It is an approach I refer to as ‘The Checklist’. Avoid it at all costs. In this post I’ll explain what it is and the reasons for not employingContinue Reading

Look in order to hear

A short post as a reminder: you will pick up a good deal of useful information from someone that you are coaching by looking intently at their posture changes in their posture skin colour changes eye movement and many other factors. All of this data that you can collect becomes more information to add toContinue Reading

A clearer view of focus

Daniel Goleman, the author that made EQ available to most of us through his written work such as Emotional Intelligence, Why it can matter more than IQ, speaks in the video below on the importance of focus. He discusses what elements help maintain and build concentration and what can detract from our ability to focusContinue Reading

‘Getting’ isn’t ‘doing’ coaching

If I’ve heard it once I’ve heard it at least …twice. Actually it is much more frequent than that. I hear it from leaders of business who commission a leadership/coaching skills programme who then try to keep it at arms length. I hear that they ‘get’ coaching. They understand the rationale of using a coachingContinue Reading

Ask the obvious

Many leaders and managers that I have worked with over the years find it difficult to ask the obvious question. They struggle to ask something that will move somebody from stuck to unstuck because the question is either a little too direct, challenging or personal. Reserved Some of this holding back is a good thing.Continue Reading

A Coaching Experiment

I have recently read a very interesting book written by Eric Ries, titled, “The Lean Startup”. It provoked a lot of thought and reflection on how I tend to go about business development. Whilst much of it was quite oriented towards tech-start-ups, some of the advice probably holds true for all businesses. One of theContinue Reading

Must do better

It’s not the time of year when schools traditionally give out reports to pupils but the Office of National Statistics (ONS) has just published our finalĀ reportĀ – the UK’s that is – on productivity, for the year 2012. How are we doing? Well, I’m certainly no economist but I do love a bit of statistics andContinue Reading


Have you noticed from where so many people orientate their worlds? Have you observed that people will so frequently engage in a conversation but before you know it, they have managed to turn the topic around to themselves and their agenda? They do it repeatedly. They do it more or less knowingly. As coaches, weContinue Reading