Bev’s Story

My Situation (before coaching)

Following a major restructuring of the company in June 2005, the Finance Director left. I became the most senior manager in Finance. I made a major contribution to the restructuring and was encouraged to think of promotion to Finance Director (FD) within 12 to 24 months.

By July 2007, I was beginning to wonder if it was going to happen which was knocking my confidence and I knew then that I would need help to achieve my goal.

The Challenges I Faced (at that time )

I felt I was getting “mixed messages”. My aspirations were being recognised but the Managing Director seemed to find it difficult to explain what he wanted from an FD. I didn’t have a defined plan that I could focus on or a way to measure my progress.

Why or How Did I Think Coaching Would Help Me?)

I knew that I needed support to get a plan in place so I could feel confident that I was achieving results.

I thought about shadowing a Finance Director within another business but decided that it wasn’t the technical side of the job that I needed to develop most.

My next thought was to have a mentor but I have to admit that I was sceptical because it’s all about relationships and having a recommendation from someone doesn’t always translate to working with a different personality. In truth, I thought I may have to meet two or three people before finding someone I could work with.

Francis was the first person who was recommended to me. We had a good initial meeting, at which my fears were allayed, and we started on our journey.

What Actually Happened and How Did This Help?

It was a huge relief to be able to talk about my situation with someone who was independent of the organisation. I also gained a lot from Francis’ attitude and confidence that “we can do this.”

I wrote my job description and got it confirmed by the MD and HR manager. Then, my frustration level reduced and my motivation increased dramatically. I felt more in control.

I focused on developing my leadership abilities and worked on my limiting self-beliefs to build up my core self-confidence. Francis suggested that I document my successes and learning points. I chose to do this in a book dedicated to my goal. I found it really useful and as I read through it, I was reminded that actually, I was doing OK.

What Were the Results?

I defined my goal and built a plan to achieve it which was a really useful, structured discipline for me. I also ensured that my business and my development goals reinforced each other, and that removed any conflict and source of confusion.

I established a formal review process with the MD and HR manager, and planned initiatives to demonstrate my abilities to improve the profitability of the business. One initiative lead to the successful renegotiation on a contract, giving a £250k saving to the business.

By the mid-point in my coaching programme I was an active contributor at Board level; to the business strategy and in delivery of the detailed 3 year plan.

What Was Francis Like to Work With?

My sessions with Francis were always enjoyable and even though they were sometimes tough, I always went away feeling uplifted. Francis is an excellent listener who passes no judgement whatsoever. He certainly got the best from me and I would happily recommend him to others.

What happened next?



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