blog: news and opinion


Leadership in professional service firms

31st May 2017

Leadership is particularly complex and demanding in professional service firms such as law and accountancy. In such firms not only is profit generated through each fee-earner's billable hours, but the distribution and clarity of power is less clear, more diffuse and less demarcated than in other organisations. Leadership is an ambiguous matter of high autonomy and yet often high consensus.

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Do you know when to stop? My latest article in Coaching at Work

4th May 2017

When is coaching actually performance management? My reflection column in the May issue of Coaching at Work explores my experience that there’s no clear, constant, easily-definable line between the two.

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A Bigger Conversation

28th April 2017

Relationships - between people, and between people and events, behaviours, beliefs, cultures and outputs - are the key to organisational health. Sometimes skilled, capable and experienced leaders don't seem fully able to occupy their authority, sometimes the same challenge seems to recur repeatedly. Such challenges may require a Bigger Conversation: a conversation that addresses not just individuals or individual issues, but which sees them as an ecosystem.

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Influence, impact and culture change: a systemic view

31st March 2017

When a new broom comes in to a senior role with high expectations, but is inexplicably unable to occupy their authority, the situation can benefit from a systemic constellations perspective. This means looking at what might have been ignored in the organisation’s remembering, what or who might have been excluded or unacknowledged - and especially what might not have been acknowledged about the contribution of a previous occupant of the role. Energy is then released and the leader is freed up to do what they do best.

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Letting go of knowing: new article in 'Coaching at Work'

27th March 2017

Clients and potential clients respond with more energy to their experience of how I am than to what I know - and equally, who I am, and how my ‘being’ shows up, have a significantly greater impact on my coaching than what I do.

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Compassionate leadership

27th February 2017

Compassion at work increases our willingness to trust: our brains respond more positively to bosses who have shown us empathy – and compassion increases the health and wellbeing not only of employees but also of the bottom line. When compassion is low, engagement and levels of discretionary effort are low, retention and recruitment are more difficult, stress and absenteeism are high, and success becomes more elusive.

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Nourish Your Practice: new article in Coaching at Work

30th January 2017

My article 'Nourish Your Practice' has been published in Coaching at Work January 2017. My reflection before and after every coaching session is an intrinsic part of any coaching that I deliver: without it I would be simply skimming across the surface of what is actually going on and what the possibilities for change could be. I encourage my clients to reflect too.

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Practitioner in Systemic Coaching and Facilitation

30th January 2017

I've achieved the Practitioner Certificate in Systemic Coaching and Facilitation. My use of constellations - which are a key part of this work - facilitates clients' growth through my coaching. The approach illuminates the hidden dynamics in relationships, teams and organisations, clarifies what may be puzzling or unclear or difficult, and enables change to happen at a level beyond only behaviour management or leadership models.

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Neuroscience of gender and performance

15th December 2016

In a recent article in 'Coaching at Work' I distil learning from a workshop on the Neuroscience of Gender and Performance. Nurture rather than nature accounts for many of the gender differences we observe in the workplace: male and female brains aren't as different as we're used to thinking.

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'What lies beyond': my latest article in Coaching at Work

5th December 2016

Attending the cremation of a previous client, and being surrounded by dozens of people who had been part of his life, made me realise that in a coaching relationship I hear and see only a tiny window on the client: their stories reflect just a fraction of who they are - and if I am to deliver real value in my coaching, I need to go far beyond the constraints of the coaching objectives to a deep understanding of who the client is, and can be, in their contexts and systems.

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