Wimbledon without rain

Wimbledon

“Everyone needs a coach. It doesn’t matter whether you are a basketball player, a tennis player, a gymnast or a bridge player”  Bill Gates

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Can you imagine a Wimbledon without strawberries & cream, the tournament without rain, the players without coaches?

It has been done……but very rarely indeed.

Players hire coaches to be the best they can, their performance is important to them, they desire to excel & to that end line up the best support they can find.

Business is fast catching on, taking decisive action & getting results “Recent studies show executive coaching to be the most effective means for achieving sustainable growth, change and development in the individual, group and organisation.” HR Monthly

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Theory & truth in the labyrinth

Theory

“No theory can be right because no theory can have all the answers & hold a monopoly on the truth”

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Earlier this year in Marrakech I was hunted down through a labyrinth of streets by a trader who had shut up shop to catch up with me. When he eventually did so he grabbed my arm & various scenarios flashed through my mind, none of which came close to the truth of what was about to transpire.

He duly informed me that I had mistakenly given him the equivalent of £100 too much & counted out the notes methodically before me! Needless to say we parted as friends.

I admit it did leave me a bit perplexed, not what I would have expected in theory & it took a while to adjust to this new truth.

I think it is rare that our experiences are this cut & dried & so the reality check an experience has the potential to provide us can get overlooked in favour of previously embraced theories. In many ways coaching should provide a space to challenge ourselves and our theories and test them in a safe space, to ensure that practice informs theory as well as the other way around.

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Coming alive

dav

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive. Because what the world needs are people who have come alive”   Harold Whitman

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In many ways this goes to the heart of coaching; getting in touch or reconnecting with our core self & ensuring our actions are congruent with this, enables a kind of coming alive or reawakening.

Skilled facilitation can help to remove the tarnish & rust from our best self, helping us to set aside our mind-forged manacles, towards improved vision & performance.

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By their fruits

lights

“The real test of a leader lies not in the personality or behaviour of the leader, but in the performance of the groups they lead. By their fruits we will know them”    Rosemary Stewart

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Inside / Outside?

In out

“The answers aren’t out there, they’re in there”  Goldsborough Coaching & Consultancy

How often are we seduced by the notion that the answers we need are to be found outside of ourselves?

In a world of living by algorithms it can seem faintly ridiculous to validate our own resources.

When creating a strap line to capture the essence of my business coaching role I thought it important to nail my colours to the mast;

“The answers aren’t out there, they’re in there”

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Glue v/s solvent

Glue v solvent

Coaching; some clients need glue while others need solvent….

Thinking about that issue that keeps getting in your way (you know, the one that seems stubbornly elusive & hard to pin down).

If you were one day brave enough to consciously acknowledge it & look to gain support, which do you think you would be looking for?

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Reaching out, inviting in

Reports

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“The world is disgracefully managed, one hardly knows to whom to complain” – Ronald Firbank

This blog is about the increasing political interest in corporate governance through offices such as the Financial Reporting Council, author of Corporate Culture and the Role of Boards and using this as a vehicle to explore how change challenges.

Companies are being told to think and report more broadly, beyond the short term bottom line to issues such as longer term viability, culture and values. In essence thinking and acting more responsibly on issues such as gender and environmental concerns and evidencing this in their strategic reports.

Grant Thornton’s annual analysis of the UK’s FTSE 350 companies shows that, as with any new initiative, companies are still orientating themselves. There appear to be three broad camps; those that have simply failed to step up the plate, perhaps hoping it will go away. Those that acknowledge the requirements and meet the obligation via a shallow academic exercise, adding bolt-ons to their existing reports. Thirdly, those that have meaningfully engaged and embraced the spirit with distinctive reviewing of their broader corporate responsibilities.

Despite the research showing that the benefits are significant, including increased investor confidence, only 62% have full compliance and of those that do quality remains a mixed bag.

If it is not difficult to engage with a new way of working then the change probably does not represent a paradigm shift. Such shifts are disorientating and personally challenging for leaders with an investment in the old order of things – the rules have changed. Talking with familiar peers in familiar places often reinforces the existing group think, can encourage denial and a re-enactment of familiar and well rehearsed scripts adapted to the old order i.e. increase corporate risk.

Reaching out beyond the outer skin of the organisation or inviting guests such as coaches in to the inner sanctum can help to challenge, explore and identify how we do sometimes get in our own way. As Abba Eban said “History teaches us that men and nations behave wisely once they have exhausted all other options”.

But I guess that is not compulsory…

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