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To coach or not to coach?

October 17, 2013

According to The Financial Times, high-fliers increasingly want coaching. It is, apparently ‘a badge worn proudly by people either in or heading for senior roles’.

How timely, then, that IACCM has introduced a mentoring program to support its members. Earlier this year, we recognized an increasing need by professionals at all levels to have access to advice and counsel. In part, the association has been providing this through its member advisory services and also the networking that we enable. But we understood the need for a more formal program which can be offer access to senior members and, as appropriate, to IACCM staff.

According to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, coaching and mentoring are ‘development techniques based on the use of one-to-one discussions to enhance an individual’s skills, knowledge and work performance’. The need for such support is growing, in large part due to the complexity we face in today’s business environment. Testing our ideas, gathering opinion, seeing things from a different angle – these are fundamental to success. IACCM observes this need more generally in the push from management to improve ‘commercial awareness’ and ‘business judgment’. As complexity grows, so does specialism, and together they create real risks of individuals who lack the breadth of view needed to support good and timely commercial decisions.

So no longer a sign of weakness or deficiency, increasingly those with mentors are people who are reaching high and have the confidence to seek added support and wisdom to accelerate their climb. And of course, the mentor is also frequently enriched by the experience, not least because they are forced to tackle new and interesting topics that expand their horizons.


If you are interested in either being a mentor, or having a mentor, please contact Mark Heminway –

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