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Conversations for Change


This course will introduce you to the field of coaching and mentoring, giving you an understanding of what it is, how and where it’s used and why it is so useful. You will be introduced to some core coaching techniques and models. Alongside the theory, there will be the chance to try out some techniques and develop your skills. Between sessions, you will be invited to try out the skills that you are learning and reflect on your experiences when we get together. 


As well as gaining some useful skills that will transform your conversations with people you support, this course will give you a good introduction to coaching and will enable you to decide whether you would like to take things further and explore formal training in coaching  or mentoring. 

What's included?

Session One: How to have a great conversation


In this first session we will discover what makes coaching conversations so effective. By the end, you will have the knowledge and tools to facilitate deep, honouring conversations that help people to understand themselves better and think deeply and creatively. Interesting stuff along the way will include:

  • Some definitions of coaching and mentoring

  • Deep listening

  • Creating space for powerful conversations, drawing on the work of Dan Hughes and Nancy Kline

  • How to move away from advice towards helping people to find their own answers and why this is a really good idea.

  • Good practice and ethics around coaching 

Session Two: How to help people to create goals and achieve what they're aiming at


We will look together at some of the most widely used coaching models and tools and try them out. We will also identify some common pitfalls and sticking points and discover how you can find your way around them. Highlights include:


  • The GROW model

  • Helping people create goals that work for them

  • Understanding comfort, panic and stretch zones

  • Useful tools from Solution Focused Brief Therapy

  • Understanding motivation

  • How change works and how to spot when someone's stuck

  • The different philosophies of planning and journeying and why both are good. 


Session Three: Conversations of exploration and understanding

Not every coaching conversation is about setting goals and working towards them. Sometimes people need space to understand what is going on within and around them. Sometimes people get stuck and need to understand what it is within them that is getting in the way. So in this session, we explore how to have conversations that do just that. We will discuss: 

  • Empathy and self compassion

  • Three techniques for getting to the bottom of what's getting in the way

  • Wisdom from the wonderful world of CBT

  • NLP techniques for managing emotions

  • Uncovering beliefs that are getting in the way 

  • Self talk and how to harness it 


Session Four: The Beautiful Variety of People


We are all different. We see the world differently to each other, which means that what works for one person might be completely unhelpful to someone else. Understanding those differences helps us to celebrate who we are and work with others in ways that make sense for them. Views along the way will include:

  • The pitfalls of 'Be-Like-Me-Ism

  • Learning styles

  • Some useful concepts from Myers Briggs, including:

    • extraversion and introversion​

    • thinking and feeling

    • planning and spontaneity

    • big picture thinking and detail thinking


This course is facilitated by Catherine Cowell and can be run face to face or via zoom. It is run whenever there is demand. To enquire contact Catherine:

Cost: £50 per session* 

*Where cost is a barrier to learning, we can often offer supported or free places. Just ask. 

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