Coaching corridors of opportunity

RESEARCH ‘Coachable moments’ play an important part in coaching cultures, yet research in Australia shows that managers consider informal settings too much of a risk Australian managers are failing to take advantage of informal ‘coachable moments’ with their staff, citing time constraints, concerns about insufficient skills and relationship issues, preferring instead to conduct ‘less risky’ […]


Coaching with courage and vulnerability can not only lead to client change, it can boost coaches’ learning too, says Janet Laffin, senior lecturer, Sheffield Hallam University. There has been renewed interest in the relational qualities sponsors look for in a coach, following the publication of the 2013 Ridler Report1, which highlighted qualities, including personal chemistry […]

Research matters: The wild west of coaching

Cowboy or professional? Let’s drop the negative discourse and use an inclusive one. Isn’t that what coaching is all about, asks Bob Garvey, professor of business education at York St John Business School The idea of ‘discourse’ is important in the study of people and society. Discourses are basically how people talk about things. They […]

Research: Putting out the feelers

Paul Stokes, director, Coaching and Mentoring Research Unit, Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University, argues for a formal link between emotional intelligence and leadership development Since the work of Daniel Goleman (1996; 1999) popularised the notion of emotional intelligence (often referred to as EQ), it has become an accepted part of the language used to […]

Research matters: eight ways to best practice

David Megginson, emeritus professor of HRD at the Coaching and Mentoring Research Unit, Sheffield Hallam University, puts forward some provocative propositions about coaching practice in organisations Proposition 1. Coaching works because it honours the coachee’s agenda Nancy Kline (1999) offers a radical perspective on the coach’s role to facilitate the thinking of the client. This […]

Research matters: have you got the moves?

Many coaches use rituals in preparation for their work, but could the cathartic nature of rituals help clients move through pain, too, asks Dr Angélique du Toit, senior lecturer, Sheffield Business School It is evident from conversations I have had with many coaches that everyone has their own particular ritual they engage in before a […]

Research matters: Martini moments

What does ‘any time, any place, anywhere’ look like in a coaching conversation, asks Stephanie Sturges, senior lecturer, Coaching & Mentoring Research Unit (CMRU), Sheffield Business School.

A number of years ago, my colleague and I were exploring with a group of coaches how coaching might be transferred into the workplace, where and when it might be appropriate to coach and how to assist in the development of a coaching culture.

We explored the notion of coaching ‘any time, any place, anywhere’, or as one coaching student termed it, a ‘Martini Moments’ approach to creating coaching culture.

Research matters: A satisfied customer?

How can we measure the impact of managerial coaching on the end user – the customer? Is it even possible, asks Paul Stokes, Coaching & Mentoring Research Unit (CMRU), Sheffield Business School. At a recent coaching & mentoring research day at Sheffield Hallam University, there was an interesting discussion about evaluating coaching and mentoring work. […]

Research matters: Get into your comfort zone

Does where we hold our coaching interactions have an impact on their quality and outcomes? Rob Kemp, coach and associate lecturer, University of Derby, investigates the myriad spaces we engage in.

Reflecting on my own experiences of coaching locations, I became curious: how active were my choices, and clients’ choices, of where to hold the coaching conversation – and what impact might those choices have on what the interaction feels like and does?

Being unsatisfied with my own thoughts, and my own knowledge in this area, I embarked on a search for inspiration and guidance from other coaches, practitioners and academics. Finding nothing specifically coaching/mentoring focused, I widened the net to look at therapy and other sorts of conversations.

Research: radical coaching vs groupthink?

Collusion to preserve corporate ideology contributed to the credit crisis. Could critical coaching prevent such thinking, asks Dr Angélique du Toit, of the Coaching and Mentoring Unit at Sheffield Hallam University The notion of ‘groupthink’ is not new – we were first introduced to the concept by Janis (1972;1982). One of the major symptoms of […]