Coaching at Work Annual Conference 2015: Onwards and Upwards

London, London
Wednesday, 01 July 2015

9:40 - 10:25 Keynote 1: Breaking through the glass ceiling - Dianah Worman OBE & Jessica Chivers
Dianah will draw from research on the issue of the use of quotas to improve the representation of women on boards, referring to a recently published survey and literature review and practical guidance supported by the CIPD and published by Telefonica.

Men are key to women getting on and research just published by Columbia Business School finds that ‘Queen Bee syndrome’ is a myth: it's men who block women's progression once woman has 'made it' into the boardroom. Jessica will explore the vital role of men and managers in women's career advancement in its many forms - it's time to take the conversation beyond the boardroom she says.

10:30 - 11:30 Case Study 1: Internal Coaching practices in the Big Four Accounting Firms: Deloitte, EY, KPMG and PwC - Claire Davey, Nicki Hickson, Louise Buckle & Maria Symeon

The heads of coaching at the Big Four discuss specific aspects of their use of internal coaching including:

  • The importance of the business needs driving the introduction of coaching
  • Situations where executive coaching is used 
  • Links from coaching to organisational development and systemic work in the organisation
  • Coaching administration system and measurement

10:30 - 11:30 Workshop 1A
: Directive, Non-Directive and Clean Coaching: whose direction is it anyway? - Angela Dunbar
“Is your coaching like a compass or an arrow? This session will present how Clean Language, a non-directive approach to coaching, is far from directionless and can provide a model to continually re-orient towards your client’s outcome – which may well be a moving target. Angela will share how some directive stances when made deliberately and on purpose, can be extremely beneficial. However, coaches often lead unintentionally, through unconscious metaphors within their questions which bias and limit the coachee’s available paths to take. Metaphors about journeys, destinations and directions are commonly found within coaching conversations, and these metaphors are more than just figures of speech. They also reveal how someone is experiencing their reality and can be both useful signposts and unhelpful detours, depending on whose direction is followed. There will be an opportunity in the session to experience both Clean Language and Clean Space, and to learn something new about your own degree of directiveness in your coaching. You’ll gain a practical tool for re-orienting towards your coachee’s outcome and a process for uncovering metaphors about direction so you can ‘point’ your questions to wherever your coachee needs to go next.”

10:30 - 11:30 Workshop 1B: 100 reasons to dislike supervision - Dr Tatiana Bachkirova 
A topic like that from a supervisor and an educator of coaching supervision might seem mad.  Nevertheless, I would like to explore exactly what is important to me from an angle that is not easy to discuss. I am concerned with the coaching field becoming too closely associated with positive psychology and positive thinking. However, criticality and ‘negative’ emotions are part of who we are and may be appropriate responses to certain situations and contexts if we take a more systemic view. Therefore, marginalising ‘negativity’ is not helpful for our overall functioning in coaching or supervision. I believe there is much in ‘negative thinking’, difficult emotions and critical enquiry that could be utilised. In this session we will experiment with taking ‘negative enquiry’ seriously with a view to learn how this ‘mad’ approach can be useful for the benefit of our clients.

11:50 - 12:50 Case Study 2: Global Mentoring at Swarovski - Conversations with a Sparkle - Emily Cosgrove

How formal mentoring can offer much more than just a one to one learning relationship.  In this session Emily will share the Swarovski story so far from launch of their first formal pilot mentoring scheme, to global programme.  We will hear from the mentors and mentees, sponsor, line managers and programme coordinator themselves who will share their personal stories and learnings. This session will offer insights into how mentoring can be used as a vehicle for supporting and driving better quality conversations at individual, team and organisational level. 

We will explore how Swarovski have built a mentoring offering that:

  • develops high potential individuals and aides their progression
  • raises the leadership skills of senior executives
  • nurtures cross-functional relationships
  • includes line managers
  • uses action learning as an approach to mentor supervision
  • offers train the trainer sessions to build internal capability

11:50 - 12:50 Workshop 2A
: How to build a thriving coaching practice - Darren Robson
In 2014 Darren asked the Association for Coaching (AC) community what they needed the most and the resounding feedback was help with developing our practice’. What became evident reading through the 500 responses from the subsequent survey was that people love the profession, love delivering coaching and making a difference to their clients BUT they struggle with the ‘how to’ of running their coaching business.
He found that people: 
  • Struggle with outsourcing the areas they aren’t strong at, spending their precious energy and time on doing the things they aren’t good at. 
  • Find marketing, business development and selling pushes them out of their comfort zone and means they often avoid it. 
  • Often fail to charge appropriately for the services they offer, even though they know what they offer adds real value to clients. 
  • Waste their time on social media and other distractions, instead of focusing on deepening relationships with their clear target clients. 
  • Don’t ask for the sale.
  • Need to learn to position their professional Brand in the right spaces and places. 
  • Love their business ideal and need to learn to focus in on client lifetime value, which adds real return on contribution and investment. 

His session will be co-created with the audience using agile facilitation and a conversational approach to addressing a critical set of needs for building, developing and growing your thriving coaching practice. 

11:50 - 12:50 Workshop 2B
: Coaching for Mindful Action: applying the philosophy and practice of yoga to leadership coaching - Dr James Pritchard

Yoga is mindfulness in action - a form of action enquiry into the nature of leadership of the self and of others.  The question of how to differentiate motion from action reflects the leader’s question of how to take transformative action rather than expend energy through motion. This session explores preliminary research work in the application of yoga practice in coaching leaders.  We will look at a model for coaching leaders and how yoga practice and philosophy might contribute to the client’s journey.

13:50 - 14:35 Keynote 2: Telling Stories: working with the narrative of resilience loss - Dr Carole Pemberton
Resilient is a word used by football managers to describe gritty performance on the pitch, by engineers to describe the ability of a structure to withstand a shock and increasingly by clients to describe how they need to be in order to cope with the pressures of work. Dr Carole Pemberton will examine the rich research on resilience to identify what is relevant to coaching, particularly focussing on the role of narrative as a means of supporting movement back to resilience. She will also share the Narrative Wave TM model that emerged from her doctoral research on resilience coaching.

14:40 -15:40 Case Study 3: Disruptive Innovation: Oxford Nanopore Technologies Coaching Case Study - Sarah Lapworth, Head of HR Oxford Nanopore and Christine K Champion, Founder acumen executive coaching ltd

The session will outline Oxford Nanopore Technologies' coaching programme methodology and approach, which has been designed and developed in partnership with acumen executive coaching. Making explicit the link between company strategy and the development of the leadership capability to deliver this, it will also capture the impacts of the coaching for the individual leader, their team and the company as a whole at this exciting period of commercial and organisational development. It will be of interest to those in organisations responsible for the development of leaders and for coaching and mentoring interventions, to coaching practitioners in both internal and external contexts and also to those involved in the development of coach education and training. Specifically, it will review the importance of a robust, evidence based coaching approach when working with scientists, engineers and technologists, and the role of contracting and boundary management in overseeing the handling of various key internal stakeholders. It will explore the use of Leadership Psychometrics (the Hogan Leadership Forecast suite) and 360 Feedback to create vertical development opportunities through generating self-awareness and insight in the early stages of coaching. It will share coaching tools and techniques applied from an eclectic, humanistic approach – including Positive Psychology to enhance and build Resilience in times of stress and uncertainty, as well as insights around best practice in facilitating the readiness for coaching and creating high levels of engagement. It will offer some ideas around how to encourage the move from insight to action, generating greater behavioural agility – dealing with the ‘knowing-doing gap’, and will illustrate the application of systemic profile data and insights gained through the coaching programme for Organisational Development Purposes and to inform future decision making .

14:40 - 15:40 Workshop 3A: Maternity comeback coaching - Jessica Chivers
“(Women) without children are more tolerated at the top levels of organizations (Wajcman, 1998) and are more likely to achieve career success (Lyness and Thompson, 2000; Wood and Newton, 2006), as are women who have a partner who attends to domestic work and childcare (Ford and Collinson, 2011), although women are far less often in the latter position than men, because of the societal disapproval that it attracts.” 
Capable working mothers are swimming against a cultural tide as this extract from Emma Cahusac and Shireen Kanji's paper in Gender, Work and Organization (2014) shows. In this session I'll be exploring how maternity comeback coaching combined with interventions aimed at line managers, are helping to turn the cultural tide and enabling women to flourish professionally and personally post-baby.
We'll cover:

  • the what, the why and the how of maternity comeback coaching
  • why taking a strengths-focussed approach is powerful and inspiring 
  • equipping line managers to have better conversations with maternity colleagues

14:40 - 15:40 Workshop 3B: In Coaches we Trust: How the nine habits of trustworthiness can transform your coaching presence - John Blakey

Trust is at the core of great coaching yet what is trust? How is it built? How is it destroyed? Why is it increasingly important in a diverse, global and technology-enabled world? This session will inspire coaches and leaders to take their trust-building skills to the next level. Based on his extensive research and experience, John will introduce the three pillars of trustworthiness: ability, integrity and benevolence. He will challenge the audience to practise three behavioural habits under each pillar. Participants will leave the session with new insights into this important topic, as well as practical tools and techniques that will transform their coaching presence.

16:05 - 17:05 Case Study 4: This Way Up: Rising Minds' integrated coaching and mindfulness programme at Quaker Social Action with low income East Londoners - Tim Segaller
East London anti-poverty charity Quaker Social Action (QSA) has been running its innovative ‘This Way Up’ life coaching and mindfulness programme for people on a low income since 2012. ‘This Way Up’ helps people who feel held back in life to get direction and take action that moves them towards their aspirations. It’s worked with more than 90 people, who’ve each taken part in a 6-session mindfulness course, alongside one-to-one coaching.  In this session, Tim Segaller – who initiated the programme at QSA (he still runs it through Rising Minds, the social enterprise he co-founded) – will set out how the programme started, the impact it’s had on its participants, and the lessons learnt about integrating coaching with mindfulness training in a group setting. He’ll be joined by a member of QSA, who’ll speak about how This Way Up fits in so well with QSA’s vision and mission; and also by two previous participants in the programme who’ll share how the programme helped them take the driving seat in their lives.

16:05 - 17:05 Workshop 4A: Negotiation Challenge and Change: Coaching towards successful transitions - Dr Siobhain O'Riordan

“Is it a bird?  Is it a plane? No, it's a transition!”  
Supporting coachees to successfully identify, navigate and manage transitions can be a key element in the coaching process.  Such changes can vary from tackling daily hassles to negotiating more challenging milestones.  An important part of the process when coaching towards successful transitions is to tailor our work around the coachees perception of each event and process.  Encouraging insights on transferable skills, knowledge, resources and experiences can also inform the coachee to navigate the transition compass. This interactive workshop aims to explore key themes relating to helping coachees negotiate challenge and change at work.  We will also look at models and techniques to help you enhance your practice when working in this developmental context.

16:05 - 17:05 Workshop 4B: Taking the Stage - Theatrical Approaches in Coaching - Sam Chittenden
A good coaching relationship provides a safe space where a client can explore challenges and choices, and practice 'doing themselves differently'.  The more 'real' this practice, the more powerful the insight and the more likely any decisions and changes are to stick.  Explicit use of approaches from the performing arts can bring a new edge to 1-1 and group coaching settings, with the right mix of support and challenge to enable clients to make a shift.  The theatre metaphor brings a sense of play to the coaching, and can help to reduce the natural resistance to doing something different.

This interactive session will explore some of these approaches, including:

  • how the dynamic of a rehearsal space can provide a powerful mix of challenge and support for clients
  • the value of real and imagined audiences in the coaching space
  • using character and mask work to look at the roles we and others play in our relationships
  • the role of improvisation, spontaneity & play, including ‘knowing what to do when you don’t know what to do’
  • physicality, voicework and embodied coaching
  • developing great connection with an audience (and between coach and client) 

17:30 - 18:30 Coaching at Work Awards and Reception


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