Blog archive

When the coachee or mentee is unhappy with their current job

05/Sep/2018

Everyone has times, when their job just doesn’t seem to give them the same satisfaction. These feelings don’t always last – simple shifts in role or responsibility can make a radical difference, for example – but when ennui sets in, …

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What does a great developmental conversation look like between line manager and direct report?

05/Sep/2018

The weight of evidence in recent years with regard to traditional performance appraisal and developmental conversation between line managers and direct reports presents a clear picture – not only do they not motivate higher performance, but they often reduce motivation …

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Line manager, mentor and coach: managing the conflicts and capitalizing on the opportunities

05/Sep/2018

As a line manager, one of your principal responsibilities is to develop your direct reports. Coaching and mentoring are two of the most powerful and well-publicized ways to support other people’s develop – but how do they work best in …

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Helping a coachee or mentee manage uncertainty

05/Sep/2018

Much as humans generally crave certainty, we have to live with constant uncertainty. In organizations, uncertain comes in two kinds: prediction uncertainty and decision uncertainty. Prediction uncertainty comes from operating in a VUCA environment, where we know that “best guesses” …

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Does fear of opening up something you can’t handle hold you back from asking tough questions?

05/Sep/2018

Even very experienced coaches and mentors admit to worrying that sometimes they are not taking the conversation deep enough, or giving enough challenge to the coachee or mentee. They feel held back by the concern that they may open up …

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What to do when the mentee has no clear career goals?

06/Aug/2018

It makes mentoring a lot easier, when the mentee knows exactly where they want to go in their career. The trouble is, many mentees – particularly those in the early stages of their careers – have only a general sense …

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Making reverse mentoring work

20/Jul/2018

Practical guidelines for programmes Reverse mentoring (or mentoring up) is a practical way to enable senior people in organizations to learn from more junior colleagues. There are two main contexts for this: technical and diversity-focused. Technical reverse mentoring emerged in …

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Mentoring and coaching CEOs

20/Jul/2018

A recent article in Harvard Business Review[1] proposes six dimensions that define how CEOs exert influence. All of these also seem highly relevant to other leaders – indeed to anyone, who has a large span of control and authority. For …

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Coaching and mentoring people on the autistic spectrum

20/Jul/2018

Autism is a badly misunderstood condition. While extreme autism may be disabling, it’s a mistake to think of all people on the autistic spectrum as disadvantaged. In reality, high functioning autistic people have significant advantages over people in general. They …

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The pivotal role of mentoring and coaching in health services

06/Jun/2018

The health sector has a long history of involvement with mentoring. The first supported mentoring programmes in Europe took place in the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), aimed at supporting the integration and retention of young graduate recruits. The NHS …

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How much coaching should line managers give direct reports?

16/May/2018

It’s a natural assumption that, the more coaching a line manager gives his or her direct reports, the greater the positive impact on performance and engagement. In reality, however, according to a study by Gartner[1], there is very little correlation. …

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Coaching and mentoring as conversations about context

11/May/2018

If coaches and mentors rarely, if ever, offer advice, what do they do? They offer context. Context is “relevant information, which the learner does not hold, but which may have a significant effect upon the quality of the decisions they …

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The role of wisdom in the coach/mentor – AI partnership

05/Mar/2018

In all the major models of human maturity, two qualities recur constantly: wisdom and connectedness. Wisdom, as exemplified by the original mentor, Athene, relates to the process of reflection upon and learning from experience. The scope of wisdom is therefore …

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A glimpse into the pre-history of teams

29/Jan/2018

The ability of humans to collaborate in teams on large-scale projects goes back thousands of years, according to theories emerging from the evidence of excavations of ancient monuments. Ancient monuments like Stone Henge, the Egyptian Pyramids, the statues of Easter …

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Coach versus bot: how do they compare?

03/Jan/2018

The issue of coach versus AI became one of the hot topics in coaching for 2017 and looks set to continue to generate interest, debate and – hopefully – some research. As yet, there is little evidence that existing coaches …

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