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12 Apr, 2009

Success Stories – Jennifer Hampson

Posted by: The Coaching Academy In: Success Stories

Success Stories - Jennifer Hampson - Coaching BlogShe says…

My decision to sign up for The Coaching Academy’s Advanced Diploma in Coaching in 2003 still ranks among the best decisions I have ever made.   It set me on a career path that is fulfilling, exciting, and both personally and financially rewarding. 

My business background

After graduating in Spanish and French from Queen’s University Belfast in 1990 I joined Lloyds TSB’s graduate management development programme.  Following a two year grounding in retail banking I was promoted into a human resources role in international and private banking as Personnel Development Manager for Latin America and the Caribbean.  For the next three years, I travelled regularly to countries including Panama, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Argentina.  My role was to review the strategic development needs of local and expatriate executives and ensure that learning and development solutions addressed their specific needs. This meant delivering management development training in English and Spanish to Executives in ten South American countries as well as the USA, Bahamas and Channel Islands.

Highlights

What stands out from my early career was the fascinating challenge of working in diverse cultures and having to adapt quickly to the environment and situation.  The highlight of my time in banking was a  six-month secondment to Nassau, Bahamas, where I developed a Human Resources strategy and project-managed activity to address shortcomings in the business operations, resulting in a dramatic reduction in high risk issues, a more competent workforce, increased productivity, and enhanced team-working and customer focus.

Broadening my experience
In 1997 I decided to broaden my HR knowledge and experience by taking on the role of Area HR Manager for a 1,400-strong workforce back in the U.K.  This HR Generalist position gave me responsibility for employee recruitment, reward, relations and development.  It was followed by the role of National Investors in People Project Manager, where we achieved IIP Recognition for 46,000 staff in the UK.

Establishing Baxter Associates Ltd.
Having found such personal fulfilment in the Investors in People role, I decided to branch out, establish Baxter Associates (an HR Consultancy), and qualify as an Investors in People Assessor.  This led to an opportunity to be part of the U.K. team launching Investors in People in South Africa during 2002-04. 

The introduction to coaching
In South Africa, part of my role was to mentor, coach and develop South African Trainee Investors in People Practitioners.  I loved this part!  It was so rewarding working with someone who started out knowing very little about the subject and how to perform the role, and see them progress and shine within weeks.  That whole experience prompted me to investigate how I could further develop this aspect of my role and a colleague tipped me off about the Coaching Academy.  I truly believe it is vital to have a proper grounding in a subject before even claiming to call yourself an expert, and The Coaching Academy was excellent in giving me an in-depth understanding of coaching and how to apply it.

Our coaching niche

Our specialist niche has gradually emerged.  We have realised that what we do best is:

  • provide clear guidance on how to create a coaching culture
  • deliver top quality in-house coaching skills workshops for line managers
  • publish a FREE regular on-line newsletter
  • sell our tried and tested coaching products and services on-line 

Our new website, www.creatingacoachingculture.co.uk, is so much more specific than the previous one, and describes how we work with companies wanting to reap the benefits of a coaching culture at work, with staff showing initiative, making decisions, taking responsibility, developing on-the-job and performing to a high standard. 

The Coaching Academy had always pointed out the need for a niche and I can now definitely see the benefits of having a clear focus, target customer base, and expert capability in a particular area.  Sometimes it takes a while for this to reveal itself.  In our case, we started off with a 3-year contract to deliver our Coaching for Results 2-day workshops to 300 line managers in South Gloucestershire Council.  That was in 2004 and it is still going strong, with an ongoing requirement to train new managers.  The successful management and delivery of this particular contract gave us the knowledge, expertise and proven results to win new and repeat business and build our reputation simultaneously.

What sets Baxter Associates apart from the competition

We believe that what really sets us apart from other coach training providers is that we understand our clients’ problems – we’ve worked directly with over 500 managers who have undergone our coaching programme to date, and we have first-hand knowledge of the confusion that exists about WHAT coaching is, HOW to coach, WHEN to coach and WHEN NOT to, and HOW TO WORK OUT what difference coaching is making to performance.  We also have the knowledge, skill and insight to overcome these obstacles.

Let me give you an example.  In 2008, my company entered an open tender process for a 3-year coaching contract with a Local Authority.  We won the contract, beating 86 other companies.  And what was fascinating was the feedback from the client afterwards about why we had been successful.  There were 3 main reasons: firstly, the fact that we had very relevant experience and expertise; secondly, as a smaller company they knew exactly who would be delivering the training and were therefore convinced of the consistent approach; and thirdly, we spoke convincingly (and knowledgeably) about how we would evaluate the impact of our coaching skills programme on performance.  We believe all organisations seeking to implement a coaching culture should work out why they want it in terms of tangible qualitative and quantitative benefits, and get the trainer’s input into the final agreed criteria.

We don’t rest on our laurels.  We carried out extensive research to make sure that our programme would not only equip managers with coaching skills, but would help them understand what a coaching culture is and help them create it.  This ongoing contract with Reading Borough Council is currently featured as a ‘success story’ on the South East of England Development Agency (SEEDA) website.

2009 and beyond

Having recently met Graham Alexander, the world-renowned creator of the GROW Model, and observed him conducting a coaching session, I feel even more inspired than usual.  We are embarking on a slight change of direction, with much more direct communication with people who have responsibility for coaching via our new website and regular FREE online newsletters.  We want more people to benefit from our experience so that they can learn from other companies’ successes and avoid their failures.  The online shop is also an exciting development, especially as it gives us the opportunity to sell our tried and tested products to a wider audience and provide a service to people regardless of where they are based.  For example, we identified the one thing that made a real difference to our Coaching for Results workshop and now we’ve packaged it up into a standalone product that is equally valuable for in-house as well as external coaches and trainers.

I am delighted with the volume of business booked in the diary already for 2009 based on the good relationships we have with our clients.  I am also appreciative of the talents of each of my Associates, and grateful to the Coaching Academy for enabling me to lead the life I live.

By Jennifer Hampson

Our new website, www.creatingacoachingculture.co.uk, has just gone live and for a limited time you can download a FREE copy of our latest SPECIAL REPORT, ‘The 6 Biggest Barriers to Creating a Coaching Culture: What Every Organisation Should Know’.   This is also the theme of a talk I will be giving on 30th June 2009 at the Bath & West Wilts Branch of the CIPD.  To book a place, contact me using the details provided.  

Further Information

Jennifer Hampson – Baxter Associates Ltd.
www.creatingacoachingculture.co.uk
Tel: 01985 300877
Email: jennifer@creatingacoachingculture.co.uk

Jennifer Hampson is a highly respected coach, consultant and trainer with 20 years experience in business.  She has delivered management development and leadership programmes worldwide and has worked extensively in South America, South Africa, and Europe.  Her work has given her access to people at all levels in all sizes of organisations and in all sectors.  This has created a wealth of knowledge and experience which she draws on extensively in her coaching capacity and uses for the benefit of her clients.

Jennifer is adept at getting to grips with an organisation’s uniqueness and her strength lies in working in partnership with her clients to create measurable and sustainable improvements.  She is committed to helping clients create a coaching culture and does this is a practical, motivating yet challenging way through sound advice, a renowned programme of coaching workshops, and a long-term supportive relationship.

Qualifications: Jennifer is a qualified Coach with an Advanced Diploma in Coaching (Distinction) from The Coaching Academy.  She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, a Member of the Institute of Business Consulting, an Investors in People Practitioner, and graduated with a BA Joint Honours Degree in Spanish and French from Queen’s University Belfast.

2 Responses to "Success Stories – Jennifer Hampson"

1 | Sharon Nicholl

April 16th, 2009 at 6:48 pm

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Hi Jennifer, well done on a very well written and motivational article. You have inspired me.

2 | Monique Davis

June 18th, 2010 at 9:54 am

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Very nice article about success, thanks for sharing it up.

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