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Home > News > June 2004 > 17-Jun-2004

Half price coaching offer for South West SMEs

Business West Coaching

Business West and Business Link Somerset are offering up to half price coaching to SME's (Small Medium Sized Enterprises) in the West of England and Somerset areas as a result of funding from the Regional Development Agency.

The funding is timely, since a recent survey on Training and Development by the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel Development) reported that 90% of respondents believe that when applied properly, coaching can have a positive impact on the organisations bottom line.

Sarah Pigott, management development adviser at Business West said "Coaching is the fastest growing form of manager development in the business world. The CIPD survey showed that over the past few years there has been a 51% net increase in the use of coaching within businesses. This is a great opportunity for the south west business community and we are looking forward to supporting businesses with this service".

Coaching offers a one to one learning approach, which gets right to the heart of business issues. Coach and individual work exclusively, solving personal and business problems - this means that issues are targeted and resolved on an individual basis. Managers are assigned a coach who will guide them to solve particular business problems, identified at the diagnostic stage.

The Coaching relationship begins with a detailed diagnostic session. A coaching adviser from Business West or Business Link Somerset will discuss business and personal needs for the construction of a coaching plan and suitable coach. Once a coaching approach is agreed, a learner must commit to undertake 15 ½ hours of coaching and a further 14 ½ hours to reflect and implement new skills and working practices within the workplace.

One participant of Business West's 2002 feasibility study commented, "The whole experience was really useful. Some excellent steers and some handy personal reflection." Another participant said, "It is refreshing to have someone challenge what I am doing, but from a non threatening stance. This is providing an opportunity for me to consider my own actions and motivations without feeling any need to be defensive about them."

The South West Regional Development Agency (SWRDA) will provide businesses who meet certain criteria half price coaching until February 2005. Any interested businesses are advised to phone a Business Link Advisor on 0117 9737373 in the West or 01823 287600 in Somerset.

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