July 19, 2011
I now work with a bunch of colleagues across the country from a variety of commercial and academic backgrounds but who all trained in coaching and psychology at the same institute which is part of the University of Toronto in Canada. At home we are dedicated environmentalists (if such a thing exists) with solar everything supporting our energy efficient lifestyle. We keep chickens, sheep and grow a lot of produce in a very modest small holding and are lucky enough to get a lot of our other basic needs from local farms, shops and markets. My wife runs an environmental education company and has just finished an ecology course at Bristol Uni.
As with many people centred businesses we are embracing the advantages technology can offer. We have developed a variant on e-learning that allows passive and active interaction between the client and their designated coach. This allows scaling and more profitable operation of our coaching business but is mainly used as an accessible vehicle to the benefits of coaching and a filter that assists us in working with people who are determined to reach goals to which they are committed. We can also clarify what those goals are which may be some way from the issue they would bring to us in the first instance. We are also looking to use our understanding of behavioural types to personalise the form of text and imagery to better suit and individuals communication and learning style preferances again within elearning and corporate communication channels.
Most of the tech companies I have worked with have been as a consultant looking at people issues relating to performance. This would include Vodafone, Orange and Intel. I was involved in the development of metrics and processes to identify management interventions that were most likely to result in improved shareholder value. In fast moving hi tech companies keeping people engaged whether managers, employees, customers or suppliers can be vital to success. I also did a stint with the Carbon Trust working with major energy users on cultural change supporting carbon reduction - typically major engineering and manufacturing companies.
Having started working life as a robotics engineer I migrated to working on processes and systems to improve business performance. I now focus on improving the softer skills around management and growth especially behaviour.
The meeting in January 2013 was the best I have attended. If the conversations I had with half a dozen people are anything to go by what did I miss in not connecting meaningfully with the other 90% of attendees?