CEO Today - Executive Coaching Awards 2022

What could I, as your coach, bring to you in a coaching partnership? After all you are in a senior leadership position already. One definition of coaching may reveal more; it is a joint endeavour to discover new thinking that energises the person to create the change they seek. My approach to coaching is one of enthusiasm, energy and action orientation. It is a journey of exploration and creativity in formulating the future that you envisage. I help my clients create momentum, attain clarity, address assumptions and challenge perceived barriers to construct the change and impact they want, to reach their desired outcomes and aspirations. My role is to create awareness of possible choices and help you take responsibility and ownership for the decisions made. As a reader of CEO Today, it would be pointless to list the attributes and skills that such senior roles require. They are well known to you. Perhaps what is more impactful and thought provoking is to reflect upon what aspect of developmental growth that would challenge and stretch you to be even more effective and successful in your chosen position. My background, unlike many coaches who come from HR or L&D roles, has both a scientific - I am a pharmacist - and business perspective. I have more than 20 years’ experience in senior positions in the NHS and latterly as a Global Director in GSK, where I led cross-functional, multinational teams. This gave me insight into business outcomes that can be achieved by engaging colleagues and finding the right balance of challenge, drive and support. I designed, managed, delivered and implemented innovative solutions in communications, interpersonal and professional development programmes, and business development initiatives. Facilitated by my MBA and business expertise, these were recognised as award winning, game changing and industry leading. Over 3 years ago I left to establish my own coaching business, Cobalt Red Ltd. My background gives me a wider perspective to the many issues senior leaders face. Now, I am an international executive coach, accredited by the ICF. My global clients come from a diverse range of industries including pharma, banking, consulting, media and entertainment, engineering, IT, mining and metals, data analytics and charities. Despite this wide range of businesses, what my clients have in common, is that they are all senior leaders, be they CEOs, MDs, SVPs, country GMs and senior directors. I have recently designed a programme for the successful integration of senior leaders into a new business. The HBR interviewed over 600 CEOs from many countries, to quiz them about their start in a new company. Most took 6 months to function at the expected, required level; for some it was as long as 9 months. I believe a structed and tailored coaching programme would accelerate the process to the benefit of the individual, their board and the company. And what of the future? I do all my pro bono work with the alumni of the African Leadership Academy. This seminal organisation takes the crème de la crème of young people from across Africa. They are supported to complete their first degree, then move on to Oxford, Harvard, Stamford and other prestigious universities usually to complete a PhD. My work with them the starts when they are in full time employment, for the first time. To date, I have coached approximately 40 ALA alumni clients from over 12 countries and given over 160 hours of my time, pro bono. I feel in a privileged position to work with these clients at the very start of their career. They are undoubtedly the leaders of tomorrow and the coaching partnership I create with them is the catalyst for them to achieve so much more. If this makes you reflect, sparks new thoughts or sows the seeds of curiosity, please contact me. Linda Stephens Founder of Cobalt Red Coaching Ltd CEO Today Executive Coaching Awards 2022 - UNITED KINGDOM - - 51 - BUSINESS COACHING COMPANY OF THE YEAR

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