Coaching and mentoring

Coaching is a vital part of successful change management, improving communication and building commitment and buy in.

We are currently undergoing restructuring within the People and Culture team – this includes the creation of two new sections – one focused on People Development and one on Organisation Design and Change.  Whilst these restructures occur, we have created a new mailbox pcd@ulster.ac.uk or any queries to be raised.

By adopting a coaching style of management, managers can develop their team’s skills, encourage staff to take the initiative and problem solve, and ultimately enhance performance.

Coaching offers a positive framework for difficult conversations, encouraging ownership and responsibility.

Coaching is a process limited to a specific period of time that supports individuals, teams or groups in acting purposefully and appropriately in the context they find themselves in. The coach supports clients in achieving greater self-awareness, improved self-management skills and increased self-efficacy, so that they develop their own goals and solutions appropriate to their context.

Staff Development offer a range of coaching services, from 1-1 Leader Coaching to Coach Development programmes, as well as providing support for our growing internal community of coaches.

There are a range of coaching choices available.

Leader Coaching

Our 1-1 Leader coaching service is a solution-focused, effective and timely way to help individual Leaders meet the specific challenges they face.

A coach is a collaborative partner who works with the learner to help them achieve goals, solve problems, learn and develop.
Caplan (2003)

Leader coaching is a formal arrangement in which a coach works with an individual Leader on a one to one basis in a series of confidential sessions, designed to help the individual address personal leadership challenges, develop new skills and behaviours, and learn from the process.  Our approach is practical and results oriented.

Potential situations where coaching can have a significant impact on the University’s three core activities of learning and Teaching, Research and Innovation and Academic Enterprise:

  • Enhancing performance
  • Creating positive work-based relationships
  • Initiating and leading teams through transition
  • Changing your personal leadership approach, style and behaviours
  • Succeeding in your new Leader role

Coaching sessions will typically take around 60 – 90 minutes, and sessions will normally be spaced 4-6 weeks apart depending on the individual situation.  Start, finish dates and proposed number of coaching sessions will be agreed at the start of the process.  These will not exceed six and may be fewer, with a review after three sessions.


FAST (3 day programme)

FAST stands for:

  • Focused conversations
  • Action oriented
  • Solution focused
  • Timely and time efficient.

This programme is designed to equip managers with a solution focused approach to coaching that offers useful tools to effectively manage conversations in the workplace to achieve meaningful outcomes.  It begins with a two-day workshop, followed by1 final full day approximately four weeks later.

Course content

Supporting the participants in the development of their coaching skills will be a number of co-coaching opportunities, also qualified coaches in Staff Development providing one to one coaching support throughout.

Pre course preparation

Supported by Staff Development, all participants will be required to work with appropriate parties to identify:

  • How they will know FAST coaching is making a positive impact in their work area. What will be their markers for success?
  • What they need to do to capture this information before, during and after the programme

Workshop 1 (2 days)

  • Introductions and aims of programme.
  • What do we mean by coaching?
  • Introducing FAST coaching.
  • Questioning skills and listening skills.
  • Quantum questions.
  • The difference between goals and purpose.
  • Establishing the tangibles.
  • Values and beliefs underpinning coaching.
  • Challenging assumptions.

Workshop 2 (1 day)

  • Reviewing manager coaching experiences in the workplace.
  • The Effective FAST coach.
  • Using FAST in the Team context.
  • Application and follow up opportunities in the workplace identified.

Target Audience

Line Managers and staff with responsibility for leading others (for example leading project teams) working at different levels within the university.

Optional Assessment

This Programme incorporates the level 5 standards stipulated in the ILM Unit M5.02: Reviewing own ability as a management coach or mentor.

Prerequisites

  • Willing to engage in 360 feedback process to help you assess your coaching skills.
  • Have completed a Leadership and/or Management development programme or an Introduction to Coaching course.
  • Currently in a line manager role or a role where you are expected to lead others to achieve goals - e.g. implement change; deliver effective services etc.
  • “If seeking accreditation - Working in a capacity that allows completion of assessment.”
  • Additional Information

To book a place on this course please check Employee Self Service through the Staff Portal – ‘Staff Services’ – ‘HR Employee Self-service Login’ for available dates.

Coach Club

We are committed to the ongoing development and support of our internal Coaching Community.  Coach Club is for staff who’ve engaged in our coaching skills development programmes, for example, participated in our first line manager coaching pilot; the FAST coaching programme, our 1 day Introto Coaching programme or the workplace learning facilitator programme.

The Club is an opportunity for you to continue developing your coaching knowledge and skills, to meet with other coaches, to share your stories and keep us all motivated.