We very often work closely with individuals on a one to one basis who are going through a period of transition in their careers and working lives. A wide and varied range of issues are raised and we’ve highlighted some here, to provide a broad view of the work that we do and the outcomes that we achieve, when coaching on a one to one basis.
New hire into the company
Not feeling like this culture matched her values; how to figure out the right spot for her where her values and the company’s could align
What we did
- Identified her own values and aspirations
- Looked at whether those could be met within a different function in the company; supported her to make the move
- Acknowledged how she could meet her aspirations through external activities, and how taking part in those would give her the energy to be at her best in work
- She found her niche in the company, serving societal needs, and felt motivated to create processes that underpinned the success of her function.
- By leaving work on time for her extra-curricula activities, she modelled boundary-setting for her team members and boss, who started to adopt similar strategies of self-care.
- She remained with the company for 9 years, saving the company re-recruitment/training costs of approx. £250,000, increasing the reputation of the organisation as a place that changed the way the world works and lives, and increasing the skills and engagement of employees on the programme.
New Managing Director
Which behaviours to continue that had made him successful in the past, what to jettison and what to adapt, in order to be a successful MD
What we did
- Identified people who could give him direction about what would make him a successful Managing Director, compared to a successful Senior Manager
- Looked at the balance of value creator, business operator and people developer, and where he needed to focus more of his time at this new level
- Found ways to meet all of the new operational responsibilities, without taking away from his client relationships and sales successes
He closed a £1 million sale. As a result, he was tapped on the shoulder to take on a new role of broader scope and scale. He was well-respected in the business at this new MD level. People asked to work for him, owing to his attention to their development needs.
Senior Manager up for promotion to Managing Director
- Approaching a critical and challenging promotion point in the consulting career ladder from Senior Manager to Managing Director, in the Strategy Practice of a Big 4 Consulting Firm; which requires candidates to demonstrate their leadership potential, operational rigour, and sales capability. This process takes place on a global scale and is highly competitive.
What we did
- Identified the critical success factors for promotion, alongside a stakeholder map for her campaign.
- Focused our coaching on key metrics including sales pipeline and sales delivered, leadership impact and followership, mentoring others, offering development; and ensured that she used her time effectively, especially as she is a part-time worker
- Looked at creative ways to tell her story through visual images, whilst still demonstrating the essential business results
- Moved her mindset from being a candidate to being a Managing Director in everything she did
- She was successfully promoted to Managing Director, having demonstrated a good mix of people development, value creation and business operations outcomes, and is well-regarded in her part of the business.
- This translated into a personal financial impact of doubling her earning potential over a 5 year-period.
- For the business, her promotion from Senior Manager to Managing Director has meant that she is now bringing in five times the sales numbers, leveraging teams of 10+.
- Following a strong first two years as a Managing Director, she has now gone on to lead her practice of thirty people, and is up for promotion to the next level of Managing Director.
- She is a role model for other women in business, encouraging women and men returners to find their right balance. She champions the working parent diversity initiative within the firm, and has just been nominated for the Timewise Power Part Time Awards.
“Clare made a great difference to my own personal development. She actively listened, championed, encouraged, challenged, questioned, celebrated me along my path to being promoted into a leadership role at Accenture.
I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Clare to you and your organisation on an individual level and as a professional coach who truly understands how to achieve impact on an industrial scale. You will not regret working with Clare, you’ll wonder how you managed before”. – Diana Barea, Managing Director, Accenture.
Country Managing Director moving to a regional Managing Director role
How to make a good impression on all his stakeholders in his first 90 days; how to help his family to embrace the move to a new country.
What we did
- Identified who the stakeholders were, and created a plan to establish their expectations. Identified his own needs and expectations too
- Prioritised actions to meet the needs of all stakeholders, including himself and his family
- Worked the plan, and identified obstacles that needed tackling along the way
He was able to overcome his own self-doubts to bring operational efficiencies to the region, while also enabling his leadership team to become more self-sufficient. In addition, he uncovered what kind of work he personally wanted to lead, and spear-headed an innovative community programme in partnership with a university. He also supported his family to enjoy their new surroundings. Two years later, he returned to the UK to a high profile strategic role, having proved himself more than capable.
“I was looking for someone that would challenge me and help me through a transition period in moving from a country to a regional leadership role. I was struggling with moving to a role that was an order of magnitude more complex in terms of volume of clients, people to lead and issues to be resolved. We worked through these issues and then through some issues around my motivation in the role, work life balance, career futures, etc.
Clare is a very effective coach who listens, reflects, pushes you to the most relevant issues to deal with, is logical and is able to track your challenges through to resolution. Clare is experienced in working with senior people in this capacity. We covered a broad spectrum of issues around the role, personal impacts of being an expat, dealing with some difficult relationships, etc. Clare was able to navigate the different coaching issues as they arose. What was great was that I didn’t feel that there was a set routine as she experimented with what would fit with my style. I am a tricky client as I like to look at the positives steering away from the tough issues and Clare was able to pull me towards the difficult areas to face them, take a look at them, and build a set of actions around addressing them.” Managing Director, Accenture. Asked to remain anonymous.
Chief Operating Officer wanting to develop as a leader
How to develop his own leadership capabilities to enable the senior management team to take on more responsibilities to take the organisation further.
What we did
- Clarified the expectations of his stakeholders, regarding his role and responsibilities, and his goals for the year
- Identified everything on his plate, and what/how he could delegate some of that work to grow the senior managers and to free his time to take on more strategic work
- Figured out how he could authentically lead, chair meetings, delegate, give feedback, manage performance
He became very aware of his blind spots around leading others and challenged himself to develop these skills. He developed the capacity of the senior management team to lead their teams to collectively achieve the vision of the organisation. This freed up his time for more strategic priorities, commensurate with his pay-grade. This saved the organisation an estimated £30,000 in salary costs. He achieved more in six months than he had originally planned to accomplish in nine months, another estimated £30,000 saving, and was then able to focus on a new growth curve for himself and the business.
“I was Chief Operating Officer of an international NGO which was going through fast growth and significant change, both for the organisation as for my own role . Through my monthly conversations with Clare I was challenged and questioned on my leadership style and methods as well as on my short, medium and long term career ambitions. Clare’s coaching helped me to identify my leadership development areas and how to address them. Also, through role-plays we practised and developed my responses to individual leadership situations in a safe environment. Through our conversations I also got a much clearer view on my career ambitions and perspectives. I can highly recommend Clare’s personal, friendly, open but still challenging coaching style which has helped me a lot.” – Maarten Rooney, COO, Youth Business International
Management committee member who needed to temper her emotions
Managing her emotional outbursts, for the benefit of her relationships with her team and her peers.
What we did
- Identified the pressure points that caused the emotional flare-ups.
- Used a number of pictorial methods to help her to see what was going on, and to reframe.
- Worked on and followed through a plan for each of these pressure points.
- These actions also addressed three other goals that she wanted to focus on – prioritization, procrastination and collaboration.
According to her boss, she had matured in her interactions with her team and her peers, as demonstrated:
- Instead of remaining frustrated and annoyed with a team member for under-performance, she made the decision to commence a performance improvement plan. She managed this with integrity and compassion.
- She also made a decision to swap the roles of two team members, each of whom would be a better fit for the others’ role. This addressed a performance issue in one case and a motivational issue in the other, and saved her at least 6 weeks of frustration trying to figure out the way forward. We estimate the 6 weeks time saving equates to a £14,000 cost saving; not to mention the higher motivation and productivity the job swap led to; and savings in re-recruitment costs of £500,000.
Her boss saw this as an investment in her future at the company, allowing her to be authentic, balancing her strong convictions with an adult way of conducting herself.
Senior manager wanting to create her ideal life
After some great successes when starting in a new company and a new country, she was feeling overwhelmed and constrained by a job description that wasn’t entirely playing to her strengths, and a life that didn’t feel like “home”. She wanted to figure out what her ideal life would look like and then to create it.
What we did
- Identified her strengths and the environment within which she was at her best
- Worked through the overwhelm, laying down new wellbeing habits and re-prioritising work projects
- Enabled her to have courageous conversations with her boss about her needs and desires, such that she could restructure her role to fit her strengths and passions, and do what she loved every day
- Figured out what would make her new house and partnership feel like she was creating home
- She is in a role that plays to her strengths, and has a life that feels well lived
- She is able to express her needs constructively, whether that is at work or at home
- She feels newly committed to her role
“Working with Clare was a pivotal support in keeping me grounded & focused through a challenging few months. I was able to quickly realize how I could adapt my mindset and communication style and have the courage to express my ambitions and needs in a way that felt constructive.
This enabled important shifts in my professional and personal life. Clare was a great listener, playful and challenging, often bringing new and enlightening approaches to our coaching conversations. Thank you Clare”.
If any of the one to one coaching outcomes above have resonated with you, please get in contact with me