Bringing one’s past to bear on one’s future in leadership

childhoodBy Toby Ingham

In our session on 21 June, Toby Ingham explores how coaches can help clients consider the impact of their childhood experiences on their leadership today. In this post, he elaborates on his approach.

I started my own journey into the field of executive coaching, because I recognised that I wanted to find a different way of contributing to organisational and corporate life than from within a business development team. For me, executive coaching has always involved thinking about where we have come from, where we are now, and where we might be able to get to. It has always involved questions of journeys and transformations, and in my work I balance pursuing the business objectives, with an assessment and understanding of the coachees’ psychological make up.

I work with people to help them achieve their objectives and to foster the possibility that they can not only deliver them, but go beyond them. I’ve found that helping coachees develop insight into the dynamics of their psyches and personalities enables them to look afresh at their business and social relationships. This in turn enables people to return to their day jobs with renewed energy and enthusiasm. Helping people locate the energy that sparks their creativity and resilience has always been one of the mainsprings of my work.

So, how do we find a way to explore the coachees’ early history in the service of helping them gain insight into where they are now in corporate life? I think we need to be sensitive, ethical and clear. When I pursued these questions in the course of my own training, I was led to The Association of Independent Psychotherapists (AIP). One of the things that stood out for me about the AIP was their interest in the creative tension between Freud’s work and Jung’s. It is something of a caricature, but for the sake of brevity, we might think of psychoanalysis as being more backward looking, and analytical psychology as more forward looking. It is a caricature, and one that I will unpack when we meet on 21 June.

I am interested in the coachees ongoing potential to transform themselves, to achieve and go beyond their current roles and to continue to evolve, transform and individuate. I think the more we know about who we are and where we have come from, the more it becomes possible to understand how former experience still impacts on us. The more we know about this, the more we can increase our effectiveness in the present.

In the session on 21 June I hope to open these ideas up with you and, through the use of tried and tested exercises, give you the chance to play with them yourselves. I look forward to working with as many of you as are able to come.

Assessing early experience in leadership coaching
21 June 2016, 6.30–8.30pm
Space in Marylebone, 10 Daventry Street, London NW1 5NX
Members £36 inc. VAT; Non-members £42 inc. VAT

Book with Eventbrite

Image courtesy Hartwig HKD.

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