Coaching & Mentoring

Coaching improves performance by providing challenge and support to an individual on a one-to-one basis. We offer qualified, experienced professional coaches to work with your senior people.  We can also help teams or organisations to adopt a coaching culture with a focus on enabling others to take responsibility for their own actions.

We define coaching as “The art of facilitating the performance, learning and development of another, through:

  • raising awareness
  • challenging the individual to be their best
  • encouraging & supporting them to take responsibility for their actions, and
  • unlocking barriers to potential”

The Benefits of Coaching

A 2001 study found that coaching programmes delivered an average Return on Investment of 5.7 times the initial outlay.

Research into the effects of coaching compared with training described a 22.4% increase in productivity after training in contrast to an 88% increase in productivity after coaching.

  • 90% of organisations use coaching
  • 99% agree it can deliver tangible benefits to individuals
  • 93% agree that coaching is a key mechanism for transferring learning into the work-place

Source: CIPD 2008 Learning & Development Survey

Coaching to challenge

A coaching conversation involves:

  • Helping someone work out for themselves what the problem or opportunity is
  • Enabling them to work out for themselves what to do
  • Encouraging them to come up with new ideas and options, and
  • Helping them to see a situation from different perspectives

Coaching for change

Coaching can be particularly useful at times of change or specific development need. Coaching or Mentoring is normally given on a 1-2-1 basis and can be used for a variety of situations for example:

  • In support of a leadership development programme
  • To develop new talent or bring on those with high potential
  • Helping to deal with tough challenges as a leader
  • Stepping up to handle expanded responsibilities
  • Taking on people management responsibilities
  • Return from maternity, paternity or adoption leave
  • Supporting redundancy or retirement.

A “Coaching” Management Style

Leaders and managers can benefit enormously from learning how to have “enabling” conversations.  These can happen any place, any time, e.g. whilst a kettle boils or a lift arrives.  Learning simple techniques to question, listen and allow others to determine their own way of dealing with a matter or issue can change the way a business operates from constant command & control to an open and positive atmosphere.

The difference between Coaching, Mentoring and Counselling

Often the terms coaching, mentoring and counselling are used interchangeably.  Whilst coaching and mentoring are appropriate in the work-place, counselling is a specialist service usually provided outside of work.  Athena Professional does not offer counselling services.  We differentiate them as follows:

Coaching Mentoring Counselling
Person centered

Ownership of issue rests with individual

Forward looking

Action orientated

Directive or non-directive

Used in varied contexts

Sharing of expertise

Shared ownership of issue

Forward looking

Action orientated

Mostly directive

Used in business context

Person centered

Ownership of issue rests with individual

Backwards looking


Mostly non-directive

Used in therapeutic context