Despite it being “some time” since I (or my step-kids) have been part of the school system, September still feels like an opportunity for a fresh start to the year. I find that I start to think about what I want for the year ahead both in terms of my business and my coaching practice.
It’s interesting running your own business, I love the freedom .. but is it too weird to say that I actually miss my annual appraisal with my boss!! Granted I was lucky that most of my line managers were really supportive. I looked forward to an hour or so when I got both affirming and challenging feedback and together we decided what CPD activities would be a worthwhile investment.
So, each Autumn I enlist the support of my own supervisor, my coach as well as my peers to help me think through what I need and want to do in the year ahead. My central concern is how I can keep myself and my business “fresh” in this ever-changing, increasingly competitive and complex world. The questions I am asking of myself are:
- What have been the highlights of the year? What has contributed to them? How can I do more of them next year?
- What has impeded me in the last year? What development areas does this hint at?
- What is “hot” in the field of coaching right now? What appeals to me as part of my future portfolio?
- Who am I when I coach or supervise? And… is this how I want to be in the year ahead?
I had some lovely feedback the other day about how my sessions are “memorable” – I think that is (at least in part) because I love to experiment with new approaches. Whilst I certainly believe a traditional coaching or supervision dialogue can bring insight, it is the slightly quirky activities that make sessions memorable!
I am currently offering all my current supervisees the opportunity for an annual “stocktake”. Not only does this give them focus on their coaching practice and business development, but it also provides a focus for their supervision work. As a result, I don’t just offer developmental feedback, I’m in a position to provide targeted developmental feedback that is good for them and good for their business.
So what are you doing to help yourself keep “fresh”? If you’d like some support to extend your shelf life… do get in touch!