Saturday, March 8, 2008

Moving Forward with a Coaching Pilot

After meeting with the Director of the Mentoring program at the City of San Jose, writing up our proposal, presenting it to Charlie Whitcomb and Carmen Sigler (Provost) and the HR Contacts, we've received very positive feedback and seem to be ready to move forward. The Provost would like for us to present it to several more groups on campus (Council of Deans, the President's Staff) and then we'll get ready to launch it in 2008-09. I'm very pleased to see that the time is right. People have been mentoring informally and are very open to formalizing the process.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

History of Coaching

1960-170 - government and large organization planning was top down. Upper management made the decisions; middle managers saw to it that decisions were carried out.

1970s-80s - organizations needed more flexibility to thrive, hierarchical control of employees gave way to trust and collaborative work relationships. (3)

late 1980s - the professional field of coaching was born - a field promoting continuous resilience and performance in persons and organizations--focused on formulating scenarios for the future, given the complexities and speed of change in today's world. Coaches were often ask about:
personal evolving
succession planning
career shifting
work performance
high performance teams
scenario building
leadership training
work-home balance
individual and organizational renewal.

The Handbook of Coaching by F. Hudson

This book is a "comprehensive" resource guide to coaching -- and as I looked through the table of contents it does seem to be comprehensive, offering a lot of excellent information to help someone get up to speed in this area. Every chapter has an extensive, often annotated bibliography.

"The term coach is used, in the book and in the profession, like it is used on athletics. A coach both guides and mentors., helps the client see options for becoming more effective as a whole person. Good coaches taken great satisfaction is seeing their clients discard the old, fixed, constricting rules and begin to follow new rules that give them the strength to thrive in whatever situation they find themselves. (xi)

Coaching at SJSU

At the ARC conference, Monica, Gloria and I talked about what we would love to see happening at SJSU and developing a formalized coaching/mentoring struck a deep chord for all of us. We had lunch with Ruth Johnstone from the UW and came back to campus with the determination to see if we could begin a program at SJSU like that as UW.

Monica and Gloria and I met at the King Cafe to determine steps forward. Monica talked with Charlie and he's supportive of the plan. (I know that it would be great to have such a program for faculty and MPPs as well.) The folks at the UW have been great about sending us their information. We're talking with friends in the colleges who have expertise in this area and finding out more about the City's mentoring program. And over Christmas break we're reading some books/articles to get a better foundational understanding of the field of Coaching/Mentoring.

I thought I'd use this blog for the next few weeks to capture what I'm reading about and thinking about as we plan to begin a coaching program at SJSU in the fall.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


"Trends are clearly observable changes happening today and expected to continue into the future" - Strategic Foresight: The Power of Standing in the Future.

This is a very interesting podcast Ray Kurzweil discussing artificial intelligence and the Singularity--it's surprising to hear what he thinks is possible by 2020.

  1. Technology is becoming cheaper, smaller,faster, and more integrated
  2. Communication devices are converging
  3. Digital interaction (digital pens, singularity)
  4. Robotics like kokoro, robots that look like people, and actoroids
  5. Sustainability - Green
  6. Blurred boundaries between work, leisure, communication and information
  7. 24/7 service/access is expected
  8. Alternative work schedules - not Monday-Friday, 8-5--Telecommuting
  9. Vigorous, longer life spans
  10. Everyone is a content creator
  11. Fabbing - creating individually on the fly
  12. Personal Coaches
  13. Customization for the individual

Are we making the right decisions given these trends?

We should keep looking for ways to personalize and customize our services. For instance, we could try to package information for people with great CDs, websites, DVDs, books, articles on various topics of interest. Everything available on one page - delivered digitally.

All of us should be observing the mall and what we read to see how technology is being used. Then we should think about what opportunities we might have to use these technologies as well. We should probablydevelop our own Think Tank -- a team that is charged with watching for new trends and technologies and bringing 2-3 innovations to try each year.

Must Visit Websites

I went to a conference on Planning for the Future and Stacey Aldrich gave us some key websites for thinking about the future:

World Future Society - Find information about forecasts, trends, and ideas about the future from the largest futuring organization.


IPodder - great index for finding podcasts - great site for keeping up with what's happening

Shifted Librarian- a blog by librarians thinking about the future and opportunities for librarians

Must Read Journals

Business 2.0
Fast Company
The Futurist
Mental Floss
Popular Science
Psychology Today
Technology Review