THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT: SPEAK OUT – THE TIME IS NOW

Greta Thunberg has shown that anyone can be a catalyst for change. As coaches we are close to a turning point, so let’s start sharing what we care about By Neil Scotton   This column is eight years old. Massive thanks and respect to Liz and Stephen for hanging in there and supporting Alister and I in its exploration of the role of coaches and coaching in addressing the big issues of our times. It’s been a joy for this to be a channel for many coaches to be heard. In eight years the world has moved on. It no […]

THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT: WHAT WILL BE YOUR LEGACY?

Are you ready to make a difference in the world? Ask yourself, what’s your piece of the puzzle, and how can you get it placed in the wider jigsaw   It feels as if we’re at the tipping point. A rapidly rising number of coaches are openly talking about differences they want in society, workplaces, leadership, for the planet, and our children and their future. And they’re galvanising action. Lise Lewis and I experienced this at the Coaching at Work conference, where we ran a session, ‘The Earthquake, the Chasm and your piece of the Puzzle’. I’ve written here previously […]

OPINION: THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT – CROSSING THE DIVIDE

We need climate conscious coaches who can bridge the chasm between ‘business as usual’ conversations at work and their inner beliefs   In the last column I spoke of the earthquake in Surrey, UK. It woke me physically and shook me into being more active in addressing the big issues already around us, and coming down the line, that I care deeply about. That has led to awareness of what I call The Chasm – the dividing gap between personal feelings, thoughts, beliefs and fears, and ‘business as usual’ conversations and actions in the workplace. Zoë Cohen, director at Shine […]

THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT: SHAKIN’ ALL OVER

An earthquake in England led Neil Scotton to think about climate change – and an earth-shattering conclusion about our profession and planet Earth   It was with great fear of a backlash that in late February I posted on LinkedIn the article which appears in an edited version below. What happened next was extraordinary. Have a read of the edited article, then I’ll share some of the repercussions.   “…the Earth Was feverous and did shake” Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act 2, Scene 3   It’s 04.18am. I’ve just been woken by a bump in the night. Actually, it was an earthquake. […]

OPINION: THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT – FACING THE BRUTAL FACTS

How are you thinking about the big changes we are facing? There are no half measures – you need to bring it right across your coaching practice By Alister Scott   Whether we like it or not, big change is upon us all. Globalisation, the speed of technological change, information overload, resource depletion, the impact of social media, political unrest, migration, environmental change…the list goes on. The case for coaches thinking about big change can all too easily be made on a normative basis – in other words, you have to care about one or other of the big changes […]

THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT: UNDO YOUR LIMITING BELIEFS

Take a moment to think about ‘Leader’. What comes to mind? A heroic leader leading a charge into battle? A thought leader launching new ideas and new connections between ideas? A spiritual leader bringing their sense of life, community wisdom, meaning, connection to ‘the greater’? Maybe a business leader, or political leader or community leader or…? What do all these people have in common? There are endless books on leaders and theories on leadership, so fill this space with your favourite. Common themes include, for example, by comparing ‘leader’ and ‘manager’ archetypes, that a leader is creating a future different […]

THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT – WILL YOU BE THERE?

By Neil Scotton It seems that the last column (Vol 13, issue 5, p14) really landed with many. One response, an email from Belinda Smith, stood out. “Your article really rang true….After 20 years of coaching, I sometimes wonder if/whether I’ve made a difference.” We spoke. She shared her experiences of two paradigms: ‘Doom and gloom’ and ‘Hope for the future’. And how in private conversations people are talking about the circumstances we’re living in, yet in professional conversations it’s as though these things have been left at the door. “How do we reconcile these two things?” she asks. “And […]

THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT: DO WE SHARE THE SAME PAIN?

So many of us are feeling ‘the heat’, from this endless summer, climate change and political uncertainty. Is it time for all of us to start doing the right thing? I’ve just been for a walk. Early. Because later it will be too hot. As I write, here in the UK we’re going through a heatwave. Our green and pleasant land is decidedly brown and yellow. It could be worse. Sweden is burning. They have asked for international support to help them tackle forest fires. In Greece, 74 people have died in such fires so far. Climate change is now […]

THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT: UNLEASH THE ADVENTURE

The hardest part of anything we do is to begin. Fear will often kill the idea before it’s off the ground. Yet we all have the potential to be captains of our own ship By Neil Scotton It has to begin. All dreams, potential, growth and development have a beginning. All happiness and fulfilment is preceded by a change – something beginning. John O’Donohue shares a story in his book Benedictus: A Book of Blessings.* A neighbour of his in Ireland set out to build a house. He had just stripped off the first layer of soil and began digging […]

THREE MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT – PLANET NOT PROFIT: A NEW ERA?

Coaches are turning their sights from the economy to personal connection, from out there to in here. And organisations and leaders are feeling it too  Neil Scotton  “Looking back, you can usually find the moment of the birth of a new era, whereas, when it happened, it was one day hooked on to the tail of another.” 1 So wrote John Steinbeck back in 1954. Are we witnessing a new era in coaching? This column first appeared in January 2012, seeking to explore the role of coaching in addressing the big social, economic and environmental issues. In that edition the lead news […]