For our first thought piece, we're delighted to hear from one of our senior level coachees. We are very grateful to David Morton of Wood Group plc for sharing his insights as follows...
I found the coaching to be one of the more pleasurable experiences I've ever had at work! It really was quite uplifting. It allowed me to talk freely about my deeply held values and to look at these in a very positive and useful way. I found it surprising that some of these deeply held views, which I'd always assumed were totally unshakable, could be looked at in a different light, and that I could free up a few things about how I see the world and how I see people.
The coach's questions encouraged me to take a different perspective. And I could choose what I took from that - I could absorb and reflect - and then choose what I wanted to change.
I've been on the usual training courses - on strategy, goal setting, resilience as a leader etc - and I was really struck by how coaching complements this training. Coaching is totally tailored to what you most need so it's very purposeful.
I've extended my network as a result of the coaching using practical ideas and strategies to do that. I gained insights that I was blind to, and I think a lot more about how I communicate, and about 'getting on' with people, and being aware that people are all different. The changes I've made a long terms too, not a one-off.
I have recommended coaching to others. I can see others around me hampered by some of same things I was experiencing. When we reach a glass ceiling, when we're 'stuck' with something in our career, when we're blind to what's holding us back, coaching offers a great way forward.
I also think the organisation benefits hugely from coaching. It's becoming more and more important for people to interact well with each other. As technically trained people, we're very good at solving issues and planning our way through things, but not so competent in communicating with each other, and having good people skills. The competition is tough out there so we have to look at the best way of getting the best out of everyone and I think coaching is an excellent vehicle for that.