CONSULTING & COACHING
CONSULTING & COACHING
Keeping track of everything is not all that easy. From time to time, it can help to get an outside perspective from someone who can ask the questions that will help you think outside the box and uncover new opportunities. Consulting and coaching managers – that’s my thing!
I have worked with a very wide range of clients – from individuals and SMEs to multinationals and non-profit organizations. I have also worked with clients from all levels of management and particularly enjoy supporting and advising seasoned middle-management executives with years of experience, as well as their supervisors and junior managers.
Consulting and Coaching for Managers
The first step is always a preliminary meeting, which is completely free of charge. Sometimes, you’ll know straight away that you want to go ahead, other times it’s a good idea to sleep on your first impressions. Take the time you need to think things over – I will, too!
what I do
In our work together, we will primarily be looking at issues such as leadership, cooperation and conflicts. My core areas of expertise are as follows:
- Coaching – one-to-one consulting - for personal development, including analyzing your potential, helping you plan your career and guiding you through the decisions you will have to make.
- Management feedback – from subordinate staff to a full 360° analysis
- conflict clarification – including enhancing cooperation
- Transition consulting – one-to-one coaching, workshops with new associates and developing teams and organizations (not just during transitions, of course)
… is personalized consulting for challenges that are not everyday issues. It is a rapid-response, focused service with a set timespan.
I focus on your strengths and help you identify the solutions that are the best fit for your personality. It is a pragmatic approach to finding the “key” that will unlock the “door” that is blocking your way right now – not a long drawn-out search for the perfect master key that will open every door out there. Sometimes our work may turn up “alternative doors” and you may well already have the right key for some of them.
- Asking questions to expand your perspective
- Carving out personal learning fields using various personality models
- Using communication models to illustrate my perception of what is going on
- Working with systemic concepts such as making constellations visible (using symbols or persons)
- Providing instruction in using the models and methods so that clients can subsequently apply them independently when analyzing (leadership) scenarios
- Offering my personal perception of your performance and, if you wish, my own personal opinion – clearly identified as such
... is a highly effective independent mediation tool developed by the Swiss psychologist Christoph Thomann. Whether your issues are “just” related to cooperation or are fully developed conflicts, conflict clarification can help.
This method is particularly suitable for use in large groups/organizations. In my role, as I help to clarify the situation, I am completely impartial. As in any conflict mediation scenario, the aim is to find a solution that works for everyone. In some cases, the process will show that there is no basis for continuing the cooperation in the same way. Conflict clarification does not guarantee a solution, but it does help all those involved to establish what other options exist.
Understanding the (subjective) truth as seen by each party can help bring clarity, but true understanding can only come about when considering both facts and feelings. Otherwise, concealed feelings of hurt can continue to sabotage solutions for as long as they remain hidden!
How does conflict clarification actually work?
- We start by discussing your situation and I’ll advise you whether I think conflict clarification could help (alternatives could be one-to-one coaching for the manager and/or associate or another team development method)
- I’ll have an in-depth preliminary meeting with you, as the executive or manager responsible for the area where clarification is needed but, in order to preserve my neutrality and objectivity, I won’t talk to individual parties beforehand
- We’ll establish the main details together – who is involved, how long the project will last, a time and place → all participants, including executive(s), are to be present the whole time → 1.5 to 2.5 days is usually needed to ensure discussions can go into sufficient detail → local venue where the workshop will not be interrupted (participants usually go home in the evenings) → in very complex scenarios, I may bring in a colleague to help with the process
- The basis for the clarification process involves gathering the subjective views of all the participants. Subsequent dialogs about different positions and viewpoints are the core element of the method and are deliberately separated from both the initial descriptions of subjective views and the solution-finding process that forms the final stage
- The clarification process ends with follow-up consultations with the customer
… is an extremely important resource for enhancing leadership skills. It frequently reveals “blind spots” and, when it doesn’t, it provides valuable confirmation that you are on the right track.
I think it’s a good idea to take stock of your performance as a manager after about a year. That means actively gathering feedback from your subordinates (direct reports) and perhaps also from your own superior (or superiors), colleagues and, if necessary, from important partners, insofar as they have an insight into your management style.
I support managers and executives through their personal feedback process, but also work with companies and organizations on implementing management feedback systems.
One-to-one support for management feedback
- Analyzing the current situation → Recommending whether/when management feedback could help
- Working together to establishing who exactly should provide feedback
- Overseeing the subsequent workshops
- Potentially organizing surveys or conducting interviews before workshops to establish how managers see themselves and how they are viewed by others
- One-to-one coaching to conclude the feedback process – reflecting the outcome and developing measures that will enhance leadership skills
Implementing management feedback
- Analyzing feedback culture and existing management development tools
- Developing a concept that fits with existing measures
- Training and monitoring (in-house) consultants and workshop leaders and supporting in-house consultants for pilot clients
- Developing and enhancing a feedback culture
… taps into the opportunities that a change in management offers managers and companies – and which are seldom used to their full potential. Of course, there are also many more opportunities to make use of these team and organizational development measures further down the line.
Bespoke workshops tailored to your specific circumstances. In other words, what I offer is not a “one-size-fits-all” package, but rather a customized solution. We work together in preliminary meetings to establish the aims of the project and your role in the workshop. One-to-one coaching complements a workshop perfectly, particularly during a management transition scenario.
Transition coaching (usually starts before the new position is taken up)
- Evaluating the situation you expect to encounter and preparing your first day in the job
- Shaping your relationship with your new superior and clarifying expectations
- Establishing your position in the new organization
- Dealing with main stakeholders and key individuals
- Analyzing the need for change and developing the impetus for change
- Examining behavioral patterns and how they might impact on the new job
- Getting to know each other and building trust quickly (intensive and in-depth)
- Being viewed and treated as the new manager quickly
- Getting a quick overview of current issues, discovering risks early on and evaluating the general atmosphere
- Making important observations about the history and culture of the new area that often fail to crop up in individual conversations
- Recognizing the need for guidance and, if necessary, opportunities for the first “clear announcements”
- Observing how everybody works together in the workshop environment
- Learning about the expectations and hopes of the new associates
- Getting initial feedback after the first dealings with the new team – an opportunity to adapt your management style in good time
- getting a first feedback after the first weeks of interacting with the new team - a chance to timely adapt management behaviour
(Management) Team and organizational development
Whether your team has been newly formed, is facing new challenges or is struggling with long-standing issues, a bespoke workshop (process) tailored to your specific circumstances can help you make much more progress than countless meetings. It gives you the opportunity to:
- Share your individual viewpoints and come to a common understanding of the current situation and/or your role in the organization
- Develop a vision and strategy or work together on how to put one into action, creating a basis of trust
- Achieve clarity or a point of orientation to help you keep your team on track and avoid losing momentum because of “internal politics”
- Better harness the potential that comes through cooperation, i.e. improve your understanding of different individuals and deploy them in such a way that they complement each other instead of coming into conflict
I am married and have two (more or less grown-up) sons and a well-trained labrador called Baloo.
CHANGING AN (INEFFECTIVE) BEHAVIORAL PATTERN DOESN’T MEAN TURNING YOUR PERSONALITY INSIDE OUT
I have worked as a coach and consultant since 2004, initially in an in-house role and then on a self-employed basis since founding my own company me consulting | coaching for managers in 2007
My previous experience includes around 20 years in various, predominantly HR-related roles at Robert Bosch GmbH in Germany.
- Graduate in business administration (HR, Marketing)
- Systemic counseling (A. Retzer & H-R. Fischer, IGST, Institute for Systemic Research and Counseling in Heidelberg)
- Conflict clarification (C. Prior, Munich)
- Systemic transaction analysis (C. Pape, Heilbronn)
- Improvisation theater
- German: Mother tongue
- English: Fluent (I lived in Canada)
- French: Excellent
- Italian: Good passive understanding, but not suitable for workshops
How I work
It’s just “me”. I am my own boss and my only consultant. More complex cases sometimes require a second consultant, which is why I have a network of colleagues who share my approach and use the same methods. I regularly have my work supervised by experienced colleagues (while ensuring strict confidentiality).
If we meet in my office, our Labrador Baloo may be there (but only if that is acceptable). He is pretty good at picking up on the mood in a room and never gets in the way.
NEW PERSPECTIVES AND OUT-OF-THE-BOX THINKING ARE WHAT MAKE COACHING SO USEFUL
Meetings, consulting sessions, coaching and small workshops can be held in my office at No. 17 Breitwiesenstraße, which is at the Eastern edge of the Synergiepark Stuttgart-Vaihingen/Möhringen and can be reached by taking the “S-Möhringen/S-Vaihingen Industriegebiet” exit from the A8.
Yo may park your car in the spaces reserved for visitors in the inner yard.