Karen Smart

AoEC Faculty and Head of Consultancy

Karen is the go-to person for organisations who wish to use coaching to generate positive change and business performance. She has a wealth of experience in supporting organisations to embrace coaching and coaching skills. Recent sector experience includes the following; financial services, professions, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, entertainment, public sector, utilities and SMEs.

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How new leaders can thrive without all the answers

21st June 2024 by Karen Smart

Consider this: you have just been promoted to a management position. You are excited, but there is a knot in…


The three Rs of coaching and their impact on line managers

3rd June 2024 by Karen Smart

The role of line managers and team leaders is still slowly moving away from bureaucratic monitoring and processes towards embracing…


The secret life of sustainable behaviour change: coach training for managers

20th May 2024 by Karen Smart

It goes without saying that effective leadership and management are a cornerstone of organisational success. But what if there was…


Why do we undervalue management as a skill?

2nd May 2024 by Karen Smart

British managers are being held back by some employers. Held back by a lack of investment in proper training and…


Does your organisation suffer from managerial ventriloquism?

22nd April 2024 by Karen Smart

In business there is an undesirable thing called managerial ventriloquism. It is when managers talk for their team or their…


Building tomorrow – the significance of outcome-based reskilling

19th March 2024 by Karen Smart

We have talked previously about different aspects of what makes learning and development programmes effective, but there is another element…


The coaching edge: how emotional contagion propels positive behaviours

20th February 2024 by Karen Smart

The influence of emotions cannot be underestimated, especially in the workplace where business can be complex, fast paced and highly…

Book Review

Book Review: Power to The Middle by Bill Schaninger, Bryan Hancock, Emily Field

5th February 2024 by Karen Smart

“Is it about the middle-class?”, said the man on the train (arty, designer type, reading Bob Dylan’s Chronicles) Well, that…


Do employee performance reviews get the best out of people?

23rd January 2024 by Karen Smart

Performance review season is here again which makes it the perfect time to ask if they really do get the…


The role of executive coaching in helping new managers to flourish

17th December 2023 by Karen Smart

Stepping into a managerial role for the first time can be both exciting and daunting for any professional. It can…


Cultivating excellence: the role of coaching in modern organisations

21st November 2023 by Karen Smart

Organisations today find themselves at the crossroads of ever-changing demands and pressures, constantly seeking innovative strategies to navigate the complex…


Giving accidental managers the red card: a winning strategy through coaching skills

2nd November 2023 by Karen Smart

Here we are again. Accidental managers are still burdening British workplaces. New research from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) shows…


Embracing doubt: a coaching approach to empower leaders

24th October 2023 by Karen Smart

In the world of leadership, doubt is often seen as a formidable adversary to success. It creeps into the minds…


Nurturing growth in the workplace: learning, development and the power of coaching

2nd October 2023 by Karen Smart

In today’s fast-moving world of work, staying relevant and adaptable is paramount for both individuals and organisations. Two key concepts…


The power of group coaching in learning and development

18th September 2023 by Karen Smart

In the ever-evolving landscape of professional development, organisations are constantly seeking innovative strategies to empower their workforce. One such strategy…


When can I call myself a coach?

31st August 2023 by Karen Smart

‘Oh yeah, by the way did I tell you that I’m a coach. Oh yes, I’ve been a coach for…


Unlocking potential – Coaching’s role in optimising workplace L&D

22nd August 2023 by Karen Smart

Is content really king when it comes to effective workplace learning and development programmes? With 99% of large employers experiencing…


From passive consumption to active learning: Why the ‘Netflix of learning’ fails to empower modern professionals

3rd July 2023 by Karen Smart

Just released, the CIPD’s Learning at Work 2023 report has thrown a spotlight on how the ‘Netflix of learning’ approach…


Beyond the C-Suite: why coaching skills training should extend to all employees

19th June 2023 by Karen Smart

For decades investment in coaching for leadership development has been a clear-cut choice, but is there a better way of…


Are your employees suffering from change fatigue?

22nd May 2023 by Karen Smart

The present business climate is punctuated by constant change, from technological advancements to hybrid working to evolving customer demands and…


The art of questioning and listening: a powerful combination for managers

27th April 2023 by Karen Smart

One of the topics we talked about last month was the challenges facing leaders and managers in the new hybrid…


Discover a new leadership playbook

15th November 2022 by Karen Smart

When an organisation like Gallup reports that 62 per cent of workers globally are emotionally detached from work and 18…


We’re supporting the Better Business Act, will you?

3rd May 2022 by Karen Smart

Wednesday the 20th April was Better Business Day and I was delighted to be representing the AoEC at what was…

Book Review

Book review - From Poor Coach To Rich Coach by Anne-Johan Willemsen

1st March 2022 by Karen Smart

An unsolicited email popped into my inbox from someone I didn’t know. Irritated, my finger hovered over the delete button.…


Episode 4: Successful coaching outcomes – how to measure and evaluate investment in coaching services

24th September 2021 by Karen Smart

As an organisation how do you know you are getting the best return on your investment from the coaching interventions…


5 top tips on buying coaching services

13th May 2021 by Karen Smart

The use of coaching has snowballed in recent years with it now a critical component part of supporting the learning…

Book Review

Book review - The Zone of Connection

4th June 2019 by Karen Smart

The Zone of Connection – Shift Your Energy to Happiness, Love and Beyond


Can coaching help solve the productivity puzzle?

21st May 2019 by Karen Smart

With labour productivity growth lower over the past ten years than at any other time during the 20th century, we…