behaviour, coaching, schools, solution-focused

Inside out training for schools

inside outI’m enjoying working with Blooming Genius (the education arm of Genius Within) to deliver the ‘Inside Out’ programme to schools in East Sussex.

‘Inside Out’ is a new approach to improving behaviour and reducing exclusions by empowering teaching staff and children alike towards solution-focused thinking and success.


The programme has been developed by a multi-disciplinary team of educators, psychologists and coaches and provides an innovative approach to working with young people, particularly those who exhibit challenging behaviours and neurodiverse profiles.

coaching, leadership, school

Coaching school leaders

When I’m talking to school leaders about coaching they sometimes ask me what would be a good objective for a series of coaching sessions.

I know that some school leaders have had limited experience of coaching.  So I thought it might be helpful to share some objectives which other leaders have explored and resolved through their work with me.

  • Developing and sharing their vision and personal leadership style
  • Creating alliances within the school and beyond
  • Hitting the ground running in a new leadership role
  • Working with staff who aren’t making a positive contribution
  • Tackling issues which are holding them back or keeping them awake at night

How to get added value from your coach

Coaching represents a significant financial investment for you or for your company.  This means you need to make sure that you get the maximum benefit from your coach.

So, how can you do this?

  1. Choose the right coach for you

There are so many coaches out there.  With so many different approaches, qualifications and ways of working.  So how can you be sure that you’re choosing the one who is right for you?

Here are a few golden rules:

  • Ask people for recommendations. But be careful – what works for a colleague or friend may not suit you.
  • Ask the coach how they work, check out their qualifications and request client references.
  • Book a free ‘chemistry’ session to see if you would like to work with this coach.  If they don’t offer a free session, keep looking.
  • Trust your intuition – are you excited about working with this coach?
  • If not, don’t be afraid to say no, and keep searching for your perfect coach.
  1. Be open and honest

You will gain most from coaching if you are open and honest with your coach from the word go.  Some people don’t find it easy to open up to a stranger, but you won’t get very far if you keep the important stuff to yourself.

Tell your coach what does and doesn’t work for you.  Give them feedback as you go along, and they will tailor their coaching to your needs and preferences.

  1. Take responsibility for your own progress

Coaching can bring about powerful development and change … when people take responsibility for their own progress.

This means taking time before sessions to prepare and clear your mind of the day’s clutter.  Also find time soon after each session to download the learning.  This can soon get lost as you go back into your busy life.

Take responsibility for completing any actions you have identified, and take time to reflect on your learning. For example, if you committed to having a difficult conversation with your boss, consider afterwards what went well, what could have been better, how you felt, and what has happened as a result.

Put these golden rules into action and you really will get added value from working with your coach.

To find out more about the power of coaching, have a look at my article: How I built a successful business, working with a coach.

coaching, executive coaching

The power of supervision

I enjoyed a great afternoon of group supervision yesterday with Melody Cheal of GWiz NLP. As an Executive Coach and NLP Practitioner, I recognise supervision as an essential aspect of my practice. It gives me a space to learn more about myself as a coach, to stand back and reflect on cases and to hone my coaching skills.

In short, supervision is essential to me as a professional coach and it helps me to deliver the very best service to my clients.

coach training, coaching

Coaching skills for leaders

I had a great time this week facilitating the first session in my coaching skills for leaders programme to headteachers and middle leaders from schools in the Bexhill area.

A very enthusiastic group of leaders, and some inspiring conversations in the room – impressive, coming as it did at the end of a full day at school.

For more information on this programme, see my services page.

clean coaching, coaching

What are you reading at the moment?

I always have a pile of ‘to read’ books on my shelves and I’m ashamed to admit that some of them remain unread for years. Others rise to the top of the pile very quickly, and I’m currently enjoying my January read – ‘Clean Coaching’ by Angela Dunbar.

Angela writes with great precision and clarity about this fascinating coaching methodology, which she describes as “communicating without attempting to alter another’s perception or understanding by adding yours”. What would happen if more of us tried to do this, at least some of the time? I’m looking forward to continuing my own clean coaching journey later this year when I join one of Angela’s courses.

So – what are you reading at the moment?