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Self-awareness and coach development

Carden, J. (2022) Self-awareness and coach development. PhD thesis, University of Reading

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To link to this item DOI: 10.48683/1926.00104446


Coaching, in particular workplace (also known as executive) coaching, is a rapidly growing industry and therefore coach training programmes have expanded in line with this, yet to date much of the literature has been based on practitioner led research. Whilst there has been research carried out to explore the effectiveness of coaching and to evaluate coaching outcomes, there has been less research to underpin coach development and training. Self-awareness is perceived by many, including the professional bodies, as a core competency for coaches yet there is a lack of research evidence to support this claim. This is exacerbated by the fact that self-awareness is a construct that is characterized by multiple definitions and connotations. Therefore, this research aims to make a theoretical contribution by providing construct clarity on how self-awareness is conceptualized for the purposes of coach development and coaching, and in addition, provide a body of evidence to underpin coach training, with the aim of exploring linkages between self-awareness and coach development in order to develop a framework for coach development. To address this a multi-layered, mixed methods approach was used, whereby three separately linked studies were conducted. The first explored the construct of self-awareness within the context of adult development through a systematic literature review. The second study aimed to gain an insight in how coaches perceive self-awareness and how it contributes to their development and practice utilising a grounded theory study. The final study explored if and how self-awareness is developed during coach training via a mixed method design, using a pre-post questionnaire and a qualitative phase of semi-structured interviews. When considered together, this research provides clarity for the construct of self-awareness and has highlighted that it can be developed. However, contrary to the linear models presented by adult development theories, its development is dynamic and ongoing. The findings also highlight that self-awareness is a core competency for coach development. Self-awareness is essential to building coach self- ©University of Reading 2022 Page 3 connection as a prerequisite step to client connection, to enable coaching conversations with insight and change to be conducted.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Supervisor:Passmore, J. and Jones, R.
Thesis/Report Department:Henley Business School
Identification Number/DOI:
Divisions:Henley Business School
ID Code:104446
Date on Title Page:2021


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