What clients have said

Patrick proved to be a good listener and a thoughtful, insightful coach. Although clearly a deep thinker, he kept returning me to my feelings on my experiences to connect in a more reflective way. I appreciated his mindfulness in his coaching and teaching this connection to the present to me.

 -  Coaching client, January 2013


He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.
 - Socrates

About Coaching

Coaching is a process of conversation that supports a person to attain specific goals.

Coaching aims to help the client create long-term excellent performance that is self-adjusting (under the client’s direction) and self-generative (so the client is enabled to continue his or her own learning after the coaching has concluded). A good coach aims eventually to design himself out of the client's learning process.

A coaching program is shaped by an agreement, or contract, between the coach and the client. The contract is designed by each respective coach and client, based on the client's expressed interests and goals. The process can be as deep or as superficial as required and can use whatever methods are appropriate and agreed upon by the coach and the client.

The coaching relationship is one of equals. The coach holds the client in unconditional positive regard, using discussion and questions to help the client to identify goals, design strategies and action plans to achieve those goals, and monitor the implementation of those plans. He also draws the client's attention to important development areas that may be ignored or unconscious.

Coaching conversations are confidential. Trust is critical in a coaching relationship. Disclosure can become complex in business coaching situations, when the outcomes of the coaching process are of interest to an employer. A good coach manages that dynamic with integrity and clear communication.

Coaching is not counselling or therapy: it is more interested in the present and the future than the past. Coaching regards the client as healthy and able to engage and grow. If issues arise during a coaching program that are beyond the coach's expertise, or which indicate that therapy would be a more useful intervention, a good coach will raise those issues and recommend that the client see a therapist.

Coaching results cannot be guaranteed: reflection may result in changes to the client’s initial goals, and the client is ultimately responsible for implementing the changes that coaching brings.

The Role of the Coach

  • be a thinking partner, walking alongside the client on the learning journey
  • ask questions that result in the client identifying new ways of thinking and exploring new options
  • create a non-judgemental safe space that encourages exploration and openness
  • be honest and work with integrity
  • communicate openly, sharing and reflecting back observations
  • raise any observations or issues that are better explored by another intervention, e.g. a therapist

The Role of the Client

  • take ownership and responsibility for his/her learning process
  • commit to implementing the changes that coaching will bring
  • spend time in reflection, putting reflections and learnings in writing for future reference
  • take ownership and responsibility for the decisions made
  • be accountable to him/herself
  • be honest with him/herself
  • hold an understanding that adult learning is a process and involves change
  • provide feedback to the coach during and at the completion of the coaching programme