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Coaching Programs

ADVANCE partners with schools, colleges, and the Office of the Provost to sponsor leadership and career coaching for tenure track faculty following promotion to associate (PACE) and full professor (Leadership Coaching).

Coaching is a great opportunity for faculty to receive 3rd party support for skill development, self-assessment, reflection, and accountability for personal goal development. Whether you are seeking to build skills in leadership, conflict management, productivity, or want to devote time to self-exploration, coaching is a great strategy. Questions? Email

What is Coaching?

Coaching is for those who want to learn, grow and develop through assessment, self reflection and discovery with a skilled coach experienced in academic faculty skillsets. It is personalized to your own goals, structured to your schedule, and discussions are private between you and your coach. ADVANCE will send participants surveys at two key points to assess the program and learn more about your experience. Faculty who participate in coaching describe it as both eye-opening and motivating, especially in identifying behaviors for change and ownership of outcomes.

What Coaching is Not…

Coaching is not mentoring. In mentoring, you connect with others in your field through a series of networks with experienced professionals. Coaching is highly individualized and internally focused.

Coaching is not advisory. Coaches won’t give you advice or tell you what to do. Instead, you’ll reflect on options you determine and have guidance to explore the outcome of the options.

Coaching is not remediation. It is not designed to “fix” or “change” you and is not punitive. Instead it is an opportunity to explore personal goals and behaviors safely, with confidentiality.

How do I know I am ready to be coached?

I can add this to my schedule

Coaching sessions are an hour and all sessions must be completed within two academic years. Sessions can be scheduled in a way that works best for your needs. You may find that frequent sessions are valuable or that spreading them out over time allows you to take action between sessions. Working with your coach will be important to decide how to space your sessions. That being said, you’ll need to plan sessions around deadlines or high work periods to prevent sudden cancellations.

I’m recognizing some areas for growth

By identifying professional development needs, you’ll be able to identify goals for coaching. If you are struggling with putting these growth areas into words or practice, coaching can help you take a step back and better understand your own personal needs in a private, professional manner. Themes discussed in coaching are confidential to you and your coach.

I’ve tried other professional development strategies

While not required, other professional development strategies such as mentoring, online trainings, and conferences are great opportunities for development. However, coaching focuses directly on you and your own growth through a short term facilitation program with an experienced coach. The relationship you develop with your coach is brief in comparison to mentoring, and will likely be external to your field. As a result, coach feedback will likely be more objective. Additionally, your coaching experience will be highly personalized and self-directed, allowing you to take ownership of outcomes, learn behaviors that empower, and bring satisfaction to your career.

How to Prepare for Coaching

Self Discipline

Make consistent time for your development as a leader. Learn your values and honor them by saying no and focus on what is important.

Willingness to Take Responsibility

Focusing blame on the organization or leader blocks personal growth. Hold the self accountable for progress.

Open to Experimentation

Prepare to take risks, fail, learn and try again.

Ask for Support

Lean on trusted supporters. Share goals, gain advice, be curious, accept and act on constructive feedback.

Look Beyond the Rational

Behaviors are driven by emotions. Exploring emotional dimensions expands understanding of behaviors and relationships.

Capacity for Forgiveness

Despite mistreatment, channel energy into progress. Forgive and move on.

Tolerate Discomfort

Expect that change can be a challenge. Prepare to experience constructive but uncomfortable feedback in the process.

Cite: Steinberg, B. (2020, October 30). Are you ready to be coached? Harvard Business Review. 

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