The Pointlessness of a Career Plan

Many of my coaching clients report feeling guilty about their failure to have a career plan. The idea persists that this is something that every respectable and modestly ambitious professional person needs to have. Somewhere they have the image of that fiercely dedicated genius who knows by the age of 6 that they are going … Read the rest >>

Why career risk can be a good idea

My coaching client B has been offered a job after six troubling months of searching while unemployed, after leaving her previous job abruptly – and not on good terms. It meets all her criteria: challenging work, respected organization, the work easily within her competence, good salary. But she is hesitating. Why? It does not have … Read the rest >>

Job-search methods that work

Many people don’t realise that far more jobs are found through the informal than the formal jobs market. The formal market is what you see in recruitment agencies, vacancies advertised on employers’ own websites, newspaper ads and so on. The informal market is one where the job is never advertised but is filled through personal … Read the rest >>

Miliband’s Dilemma

It’s never easy being leader of a Party in opposition, but poor Ed Miliband is having an unusually tough time. As if it wasn’t bad enough that a junior Shadow colleague had to make an embarrassing climbdown because he didn’t know the difference between Kent and Essex, then Ed had eggs thrown at him and … Read the rest >>

Alan Partridge and Motivation at Work

Along with a cinema full of other devotees, I laughed helplessly throughout Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa. There he is, vain pout intact. We watch, cringing and snorting at his crassness, knowing that he may, albeit ever so dimly, be aware of his own disastrous proneness to failure. Alan is at his mindless best exchanging mid-morning … Read the rest >>

The Tendering Trap

What a hopelessly clumsy process tendering is. We now have the allegedly new and reformed NHS 111 service in disarray. NHS Direct have withdrawn from the contract because they have discovered that it is unsustainable. The pressure to put in a cheap bid quickly revealed that they were heading for financial disaster – calls took … Read the rest >>

Bullying, the CQC and Creating a Coaching Culture

The recent report from People Opportunities into the culture of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) makes for depressing reading with 92% of those interviewed saying they had experienced bullying. The report describes people being ridiculed in team meetings because the pace of their work was allegedly too slow, being too terrified to complain because no … Read the rest >>

Forgiving Yourself

Most of us make at least one major blunder in our lives and sometimes we make more than one. A major blunder is defined as something that actually or potentially harms someone else physically or mentally or both, regardless of whether or not that was our intent.

This incident is typically followed by excruciating feelings … Read the rest >>

Not Really About Nigella

Over the years I have worked as an executive coach I have had a small but regularly recurring number of clients who have confided in me about experiencing domestic abuse: men with other men, women with other women, men attacked by women, women attacked by men. The abuse was more often mental than physical, though … Read the rest >>

Blubbing coaches?

A recent report from the US contained the astonishing information that about 70% of the therapists in the survey said they had cried during sessions with clients. Since what therapists have done yesterday is what coaches may feel they can do tomorrow, how do we respond?

‘Ah ha!’ cries the coach who enjoys her own … Read the rest >>