Why did you consider executive coaching?
As the CE, I have a supervisory relationship with the chairman of the board, who is non-exec. The main reason was probably the isolation of my role.
What were you expectations?
I thought executive coaching would provide and sounding board. I liked the idea of a critical friend, someone that would challenge my ideas, ask me how my ideas would work and the steps I would need to take to accomplish them. I wanted someone to share my reservations and ideas with and someone that I could share my misgivings with as a business director.
Were there any surprises?
It was more positive that I expected it to be. I expected it to be more challenging but it was actually more affirming.
What have been the benefits for you/organisation?
For the organisation it has helped with stability and growth. And personally, executive coaching has enabled me to manage the complexity of my role better.
What have you noticed is the greatest impact from having executive coaching?
I think self-belief, now I feel confident in my ability to form good strategies that enable me to get more positive outcomes from my work.
What did you like most about executive coaching?
Having a place where I could own up to my own personal doubts and misgivings within my role.
Is there anything you think is essential to ensure a good coaching relationship?
You need to be able to have an open relationship, and there needs to be a shared understanding of what you want to achieve.
Did you find any part of the process difficult?
Yes, self-assessing, it was difficult to look at yourself and the way you react and to try to understand why you react that way.
How frequently would you recommend coaching?
Minimum – every couple of months. But it does depend on where things are for the individual and the company. I would say every two-four months unless there are particularly difficult things to work through.
How long do you think these sessions should last?
Two hours. Three hours is too long.
What, in your words, makes a good coach?
They have to be genuine – you have to be able to trust them. It is definitely important that you can be open with them and trust them.
Do you think providing executive coaching helps retain staff and make them more committed to the job/business?
Yes, I think it is very helpful for those who are in senior positions.
Is it important that you have ‘actions’ to complete after each session?
Yes, definitely, it’s a good way to keep you on track.
Do you have any specific comments which you would like to make about Jaqui as your coach?
Yes, Jaqui is an exceptional coach. She personifies executive coaching and has all the qualities needed to be a good coach. She lives executive coaching, she is outstanding.
Could you give me one word to describe the benefits?