Frequently asked questions:
Business consultancy, coaching and training
This is something which many people have asked me during this unprecedented change in how we work. No doubt you’re trying to run a business or work for your employer whilst homeschooling your children and we’re in increasing amounts of isolation due to Covid-19 risks.
There’s no magic answer, but I recommend taking time to plan out your week with your family. If you all agree to have ‘heads down’ time to focus on work, then also agree to stop for lunch together or cook dinner together at a specific time.
Keeping a routine during this time is a great way to make sure you have both balance and presence. When you stop to play, then focus on your family and enjoy that time. Perhaps learn a new skill together whilst you have this time.
Finally, slow down. Time is something we have now when typically most people have been rushing constantly. Take stock of what you’ve achieved, what you want to achieve and how to keep a sense of balance when we head back out into the new world in the coming weeks or months.
This is a common problem, especially if you work remotely or mostly work at home. To help you stay motivated, consider working in chunks of time. Think about your most strategic tasks and head for those first whilst avoiding distractions. Then you can have a break or fire up Outlook and get some emails done.
You’re probably most productive in the mornings so work with this and don’t get distracted with lesser work during your most productive time.
Rewarding yourself for a job well done is great for motivation and will help keep you on track. Take time to do something you really enjoy.
With a regular workload there are enough distractions in a day as it is, but if you add in unexpected changes – a shift in goals, a change in priorities or even illness or family needs, the easiest thing to do is to put your plan aside and think you’ll come back to it later.
My clients learn some new ways of working and a change in mindset around their goals so it might take a while to embed these new habits. Having someone to keep you accountable means you’ll keep making progress better than if you try to go it alone.
Starting a plan with only the best intentions won’t work unless you have a clear view of where you want to get to, tangible milestones and a set of activities to support these – and some accountability. You need to have a clear connection to your end-goal and your objectives to succeed. I help my clients to identify their goals and then we put in place achievable milestones to get there. It’s easier to work towards something which seems within reach than something which is too abstract or unachievable. As the saying goes: “how to you eat an elephant? One bite at a time”.
See this blog post on reflecting and planning ahead.
If you’re working in an organisation and are looking at long-term career progression, then we may work together regularly over 6-12 months and review what your needs are after that. If you’re working to resolve a particular issue or have a specific event you need coaching for, then anything around 2-5 sessions over a short period of time can be very effective.
Then this is the ideal time to do it! If you’re working in your business all the time, you’ll miss out on really looking in on your business objectively. When was the last time you spent time focusing on your strategic direction, goals and where you really want to be? I strongly recommend taking this time out on a regular basis. I work with clients even just on a two-hourly basis each month so they can have an external perspective on their business and get a clear set of objectives for the following month.
If you’ve been promoted to a management position in your organisation or you oversee employees who have been promoted, now is a good time to consider what training is needed.
There are many areas which can be covered in a programme tailored for your business. Topics such as being able to hold appraisals, having difficult conversations and effective delegation can be covered in groups. Whereas being able to improve your purpose and presence may be better suited to 1-2-1 coaching. These are important areas to address for new managers so I tailor programmes for clients based on their business. Do get in touch to discuss your specific needs.
In short the answer is ‘no, not very well’. It’s entirely possible to create a training programme and run workshops for teams to become more efficient and productive, but the success will be short lived. Without leadership support these programmes don’t add enough value. I work with C-suites, leadership and all management levels to make sure that organisational objectives are met. People need to feel that they’re working in a supportive environment.
I regularly work with businesses in London, Brighton and the south east and one-off projects in Europe.
Currently I’m carrying out all my work online so if you’ve got a laptop then we’re in business – no location is off limits.
I also have a series of courses on Productivity: How to Get Sh*t Done which are online.
However please do get in touch if you’re further afield so we can discuss your business and see what options there are.