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Coaching: Getting started

This week I am officially started my coaching certificate and I am looking forward to getting involved in the course. In order to become an accredited coach, an ICF Associate Certified Coach, I am taking part in Katie Linder’s Higher Ed Coach Training.

After two years of very little formal CPD that didn’t have to do with charity crisis management, I am delighted to have this opportunity to learn and develop in an area of my leadership practice that I have long been passionate about: mentoring and coaching.

A few years ago I co-authorised a series of blog posts on mentoring with my amazing former mentor Margaret Bennett, and since I have continued to develop in this area. How I feel it’s time to formalise my skills and gain more insight into coaching.

My focus

There are two areas I am particularly interested in: leadership and executive coaching, which is growing in particular in Higher Education, and organisational development coaching, which is focused on helping organisations with cultural change and strategic transformation.

In my role as CEO I frequently advise and work with organisations who are seeking to develop their use of educational technology, develop and recognise staff in this area and to create a vision for their digital futures. Enhancing my skills to coach individuals and organisations through these times will add an important new skillset to the experience and expertise I have gained over the past ten years.

Continuing to develop in an executive role

This year is my tenth year as CEO and over the past ten years I have learnt a lot in my role. The past two years in particular have been challenging for everyone and leading my organisation through these troubled times has pushed me to develop new strategies and approaches fit for times of crisis.

I think this year is a good moment to shift the momentum and to start to actively plan for and respond to what I see on the horizon instead of reacting to what is happening in the moment.

Supporting women into leadership roles

Over the past few years I have actively supported other women who are looking to advance in their careers and develop their professional practice. As part of my coaching practice I will continue to offer support women moving into management and leadership roles.

One of the aspects of my coaching practice I will be developing this year is to offer individual and group coaching sessions, and I will be sharing further details of this later in the year.

Professional recognition

It’s important to recognise professional skills and expertise, and a big part of why I am spending my free time each week taking part in the course is to learn about and gain a new professional accreditation and also include it in my CMALT portfolio. I want to learn about the ethical standards and formal tools of the coaching profession alongside gaining practical knowledge about supporting the individual and organisations I work with.