Welcome!

Like you, we have quite a few areas of interest, so we post everything under one or more of these main labels: Personal Development, Business Development (startup and marketing), Intelligence (emotional, spiritual, etc.), News, Fun, Newsletter (chat about things we've emailed). Enjoy, and keep in touch!

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Be Happy!

People seem to want to be cheerful all the time, and I suspect that tv presenters would be sacked if they did not have a cheery smile on their faces all the time - even when reading news items about disasters such as the recent floods in Pakistan. People can find it difficult to empathise with people going through difficult times, and we just hear, "Cheer up!"

It is good to feel happy, yet there are times when people need to grieve, times when we need to listen and empathise not just to try to cheer people up, whether this is in work as a coach or just conversation with friends. We need to be real and accept people's emotions and help them journey through them not deny them.

So, I find this article by Mary Kenny in the BBC magazine encouraging, as she writes more about how in British society we may have lost sight of the importance of timely grief and mourning!

Take a look.

Friday, 24 September 2010

SCT networking was very homely

If you've never been to the National Self-Build & Renovation Centre in Swindon you've missed a treat. It's an Aladdin's Cave of information and displays on how to renovate or build your own home. They even run courses.

In the middle of this vast warehouse is a Show Home, and our Swindon Coaching Team networking evening (c/o Swindon Connections) took place in this. So it was very comfortable, and lent itself well to enjoyable and relaxed conversation over good drinks and nibbles.

All this builds the SCT vision of increased availability of good coaching for organisations based in or near Swindon, in tune with Finding True North.

We were offering free coaching taster sessions. If you'd be interested in one, email me or phone me on 01249 712446.

Further work for Wiltshire Wildlife Trust

I've enjoyed starting work as a result of a further invitation from the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust to offer leadership training. On this occasion the training comprises a series of sessions for staff newly promoted to line management positions. I'm using a mixture of teaching input and coaching to provide apppropriate theory and practice and to help to embed the learning and equip them for their new roles.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Build Your Own Rainbow

Lately I've been meeting people whose jobs are coming to an end prematurely through redundancy or retirement. They are looking for new work, and are wanting to work through what their skills and interests are and what work they might do instead of just looking for "more of the same."

I'd like to recommend the one workbook that I've found to be most helpful. It guides the reader through analysis of their interests, skills, values, and the kind of work they enjoy; helps them to map these to possible job choices; and provides support for problems along the way. It is also great for young people starting work for the first time.

Some people are happy working through such a process on their own, other people prefer accompaniment on the journey. As a coach I can provide that.

Now in its 4th edition (2009), it is Build Your Own Rainbow - a workbook for career and life management - by Barrie Hopson and Mike Scally and published by Lifeskills international. There are other books out there too: this is my favourite. You are welcome to add your suggestions as comments to this blog!

You may want to support your local bookshop, however here's the Amazon link.
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Build-Your-Own-Rainbow-Management/dp/1852525878/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1285249402&sr=8-1

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Ian Storey retires as President

We had an animated meeting of Corsham Chamber of Commerce this morning. The Corsham area continues to grow economically. Amongst other things the Ministry of Defence sites continue to expand, and and the Methuen Arms Hotel is due to reopen shortly.

Ian Storey announced his resignation as President, after more years service than I can remember, and we continue to encourage more people and businesses to enjoy membership of the Chamber and work towards developing our local economy.

Cranfield MBA takes the lead

I am excited to read that the MBA from Cranfield School of Management has been ranked #1 in the UK in a recent survey by The Economist of worldwide full-time MBA courses in 2010. This also places the school 4th in Europe and 15th in the world.

I did my MBA there from 1983 to 1984. It's good to see continued improvement!

Monday, 20 September 2010

Benefits of coaching

Someone recently drew to my attention results of a survey by the ICF.

According to their Client Survey 98.5% of coaching clients said their investment in a coach was well worth the money.

Other results for people included:
  • A higher level of self-awareness: 67.6%
  • Smarter goal-setting: 62.4%
  • A more balanced life: 60.5%
  • Lower stress levels: 57.1%
  • Self-discovery: 52.9%
  • More self-confidence: 52.4%
  • Improvement in quality of life: 43.3%
  • Enhanced communication skills: 39.5%
  • Project completion: 35.7%
  • Health or fitness improvement: 33.8%
  • Better relationships with boss or co-workers: 33.3%
  • Better family relationships: 33.3%
  • Increased energy: 31.9%
  • More fun: 31.9% I like that one especially
and that's not the end of the list.

(From International Coaching Federation's (ICF) Client Survey. © Copyright 1997-2000 - International Coach Federation. http://www.coachfederation.com/ Download full results here.)

Friday, 17 September 2010

Interesting work in Salisbury

I'm part of the Well Being Group in Salisbury Diocese (Church of England). I attended one of their regular meetings yesterday. We're concerned with making good provision of support for church ministers through coaching, mentoring, spirtual direction, sailing... (you name it!).

It's a challenging time for the Church of England at the moment. There's a big culture change that we're seeking to implement, partly driven by government legislation. This changes the way that dioceses have to relate to and support clergy - in a way that is closer to a conventional employment relationship. Procedures have to be tightened up, and as always with imposed change there is an opportunity to make the most of it to improve both results and the well being of staff.

One of the mottos of the group is a quote from Irenaeus: “The glory of God is a human being fully alive.”

New events with Swindon Coaching Team

Swindon Coaching Team continues to attend popular places and events to give people an opportunity to find out how they may benefit from coaching and experience a taster session. If you'd like to offer us a venue, perhaps so your employees may benefit from free coaching during their lunch hour, then get in touch.

Our upcoming events in September are:

Wednesday 22nd September at the Swindon Connections meeting in the National Self-Build Centre in Swindon from 6:00pm to 8:30pm. Cost is £10+VAT which includes light refreshments: for venue and to book go to event page. Those of you who attended the last one of these in July will know the added benefit of great networking and good visiting speakers.

On Wednesday 29th September we are doing a lunch time drop in event again at the popular Old Bank wine bar in Wood Street Swindon SN1 4AB between 12 noon and 2pm. Drop in anytime. No need to book, and no cost except the drinks you buy!

Hope to see you there: let me know if you're coming!

More info here about http://www.swindoncoachingteam.org.uk

Monday, 13 September 2010

Morris Owen take on Finding True North coaching with Train to Gain grant support

We are pleased to welcome Morris Owen accountants of Swindon as clients.

They have sought support from Train to Gain to provide coaching for a recently promoted partner, and we are providing our Leader Accelerator programme of leadership development coaching over a six month period to develop particular skills.

See our website for more about how our programmes may help you or your organisation, and find more information on our Leader Accelerator here.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Steph Hovey Portrait Artist

How about a painted portrait as a special gift, or to brighten up your offices?

Take a look at this new site: Steph Hovey Portrait Artist.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Train to Gain in Swindon

Many of my coaching business clients receive grants of hundreds of pounds from Train to Gain's Leadership and Management Advisory Service, because the coaching helps them to develop leadership skills.

I was pleased to be invited to a gathering of Train to Gain's advisers in Swindon this week, to meet up, share information, and help develop this service.

The advisers stay in touch with the firms they have helped, so it was encouraging to discover that they had received good feedback about the coaching Finding True North has given, and wanted to connect me with further clients.

(This grant is due to end early in 2011, so if it is of interest to you get in touch now. email me )