Meet the Coach: Barney Gardiner
What attracted you to become a coach?
I love working with amazing people to help them grow, answer big questions and achieve their goals.
After 25 years of a career that had taken me across different industries and countries, from start-up to bluechip, I realised that there was a common thread to my work: my success had all come from helping others to be their best.
The ability we all have to overcome life’s challenges is incredible and I love helping people unlock that power within themselves.
Where did you train?
I trained and operated as an internal coach and mentor for five years whilst in working for a bluechip organisation but I decided to formally certify and dedicate myself to coaching full-time during the pandemic when I studied with the Academy of Executive Coaching.
What kind of coaching do you offer?
I offer life coaching as well as executive coaching and use a client-centred approach with every one of the people I am lucky enough to work with. We live in a personalised world and so I tailor my approach to the individual, calling on different models and techniques when they are the best option to enable a client to achieve their goals.
I specialise in helping people to reflect on their own personal values and principles in order to determine the right approach for them to any given situation
How does personalised coaching help people with overcoming personal and professional challenges?
Context is so important to any situation and we often overlook our personal context and therefore struggle to apply what we truly want and need in life to tackle the challenges life throws at us.
I believe that by offering a safe, trusted environment where my clients can reflect and be challenged in a way that is right for them, they can tackle pretty much anything!
What sort of coaching clients do you usually see?
I have a fantastic blend of clients who are assessing where they are in life and where they want to go next as well as others who are clear and focussed on where next but need to build a plan that is right for them to be successful.
Do you ever suggest books or other materials to clients?
I do sometimes but only if it is appropriate. I always have a book on the go and see reading as a my tool in my personal growth, but am conscious this may not be the case for a client. Therefore I will offer a recommendation but only if it is in relation to something that a client has sign posted that they would like to know more about.
For example, a recent client was reflecting on changing their perception of a particular situation and the value of gathering new information to challenge their thinking. I mentioned that a great book for understanding more about this is Think Again by Adam Grant.
What do you like about being a coach?
Because I get to see amazing people realise how capable they really are. I have never been happier in my work.
What is less pleasant?
When client sponsors want someone to have some coaching but they are actually just trying to outsource the management of a challenging situation. Having integrity and bravery to challenge back is critical in this situation.
What is one life lesson you try to live by?
Context is everything. The right answer to any question can change based on the timing, the circumstances, the individuals, the emotions… everything!
What do you wish people knew about coaching?
That in a fantastically frantic world with so many demands and expectations placed upon us, it is one of the best ways to give some time to stop, reflect and truly invest in yourself.
Do you have a favourite client testimonial or particular success story?
I always remember one life coaching client saying to me: “I can’t believe I have just told you that. I’ve never told anybody that in my entire life.”
It was a great testament to the safety and trust that existed in our sessions and meant that the client was deeply reflecting on the challenge we were discussing.