Just a quick message to say I have been chosen to lead an important group within the European Mentoring & Coaching Council: Bridging the Gaps. But are there not more than one gap? Of course, yes.
Is it researchers and academia whose research is not practical enough for practitioners? Are the words too complicated and ‘academc’? Is it true that scientific research is too slow? too fragmented to be of use? Do we need to review the paradigm i.e. instead of an applied science of other human sciences will coaching & mentoring need to create original research?
If it cannot be experimental, can it be action research? Emergent methodology? Grounded theory approach? Yes.
Or is it that practitioners in these days of marketing, pyramids and social media marketing are less interested in ‘evidence’ than money? True for some. But then for others, why change something that works? Why give up intellectual property? But what if evidence will outlast clever marketing and intellectual property?
But we are also concerned that many coaches are no more than snake oil salespeople. Placebo effects almost guarantees that customers will feel good, and if not, they will rationalise their decisions. Very elementary psychology.
For responsible practitioners the question becomes: How little evidence is actually ethically all right? Anyway, research about mentoring and coaching doesn’t seem to find its way into practice as we would like to. Quite a political challenge that needs to be reduced to an accurate analysis and then a line of action. It is not going to be easy, but potentially a lot of fun…
Wow – we’re rolling!