Monday, April 28, 2008


A short while ago I delivered a series of seminars for a wonderful organization which was just launching their own mentoring program. It's been interesting for me as everywhere I am turning these days I seem to be seeeing something about mentoring.

What's been your experience with mentoring? Does your organization have their own mentoring program in place? What exactly is mentoring?

Mentoring itself is receiving a lot more attention these days as more and more organizations and professional associations are recognizing the value of both formal and informal mentoring programs.

From my experience effective mentoring programs recognize the value of the mentoring relationship and invest time into creating a strong relationship between mentor and protege.

Some great resources you may want to look to if you are new to mentoring include:

Ellen Ensher and Susan Murphy. Power Mentoring: How Successful Mentors and Proteges get the Most Out of Their Relationships, 2005.

Robert Tamasay and David Stoddard. The Heart of Mentoring, 2003.

and two excellent online resources:

The Coaching and Mentoring Network (UK) :

Peer Resources:

In addition to my Teams on Thursdays columns, I'll be doing a series on mentoring so keep posted. If you know of other resources for mentoring, please feel free to post below

Have a great start to the week,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Teams on Thursday: Tapping Into Your Collective Wisdom

"None of us is as smart as all of us."
- Ken Blanchard

Today's team post is all about the collective wisdom and knowledge that resides within the entire team.

Questions to consider:
What's the collective wisdom of our team?
What are we able to do only as a team and not as individuals?
What is our unique team "smarts"?

You may want bring these questions into your next staff meeting. And if you do -- please let us know the impact of the questions using the comments below.

Have a great week,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP
Potentials Realized
Toll free: 1-866-217-1960
Email: info{at}

Friday, April 11, 2008

Executive Coaching in the news

There was a very interesting article and accompanying video yesterday in the Wall Street journal online entitled "Executive Coaching - Worth the Money?". The video looks at the actual impact of one company's experience with employing executive coaching services.

The Wall Steet video discusses how the owners have benefitted from a series of offsite coaching sessions (4/year) supported by regular ongoing 1-1 phone based support work. It's a great practical example of how executive coaching is supporting businesses - large and small - from many different industries.

Many of you will recognize that this is quite similar to some of the coaching work which I undertake including Shadow Coaching, 1-1 executive coaching, or a team coaching approach which involves all business partners, owners or senior managers.

Curious about what executive coaching might do for your managers, or teams? The most recent 2008 Sherpa Executive Coaching survey has found that at least half of executive coaching is currently being used for leadership development purposes.

What's your biggest leadership challenge right now?

I'd welcome speaking with you to see how coaching services could support your managers and teams performance, retention and productivity measures.

Have a great weekend,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Toll free : 1-866-217-1960
Email: jennifer{at}potentialsrealized{dot}com

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Teams on Thursday: Roles within a Team

I’m going to be starting a weekly column here at the blog on teams - a central passion of mine and a huge part of the work that I do with organizations.

As more and more organizations are realizing the critical role teamwork can play in their organization, they are also looking for more resources to support the development of their excellence.

Today’s teamwork quote is from H.E. Luccock:

"No one can whistle a symphony. It takes an orchestra to play it.”.

This quote reminds us of the critical interconnected and important role of different players within a team.

Within the context of matrix management, virtual teams and other organizational approaches, the roles that are present within a team are no longer as straightforward as they used to be.

Creating an environment where all team members are clear on their role(s) and how they are evolving can play a key role in enhancing productivity, job satisfaction and overall business results.

As you look at your team here are some questions to consider:
What are the different roles present within the team?
What roles are not present? What can you do to fill them?
What roles are overpopulated?
What roles serve the team?
What roles hinder the team?

If you are a team leader or manager, consider spending some time looking at this during your next team meeting or offsite. As a team member what do you notice? What do you think the team needs?

Have a great week,


Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP, CPT

Potentials Realized

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Four Years, Four Lessons To Live By

Today marks the 4th anniversary of Potentials Realized. It was 4 years ago today that our door, and phone line opened.

I’ve intentionally built some time in over the last few days to reflect on where we’ve been and what some of our goals are for the future. As a business coach, I love doing this work with my clients, and it’s been great to walk my talk and use my own tools for my business.

I’ve also boiled down four of the lessons that have served me best during my first 4 years in business.

Business Lesson #1: Be clear on what you want as well as what fuels and passions you
Keeping clear about what I love and want to create has been quite instrumental in building a business and a model which enables me to enjoy the best of the city during the winter, as well as the best of Muskoka during the summer. My time up north renews me on an annual basis, providing the opportunity for more strategic thinking and program/product development.
Coaching Questions: What do you want to create in your business? What's going to give you energy? What can't you live without?

Business Lesson #2: Don’t be afraid to create your own path
When I first started coaching four plus years ago, one of the only models available was one-on-one coaching. From the start of my business I was eager to create and design coaching experiences for groups. I've loved being a pioneer in an emerging area of the coaching profession - group coaching. Rather than feeling like a renegade I created my own path. You can read more about group coaching over at my Group Coaching Ins and Outs blog.
Coaching Questions: What's your path? What unique contribution can you make as a business owner? What's the unique path of your business?

Business Lesson #3: Persevere
Strategic perseverance has played an important role in growing my business. If it didn't work, I asked why? If it didn't work, I tried again and refocused. If that didn't work, I tried again.
Most of us know the stats on marketing -- it may take 7-11 times for a consumer to purchase, so why do so many business owners give up after the first try?
Coaching Questions: Where do you need to persevere? What needs to be refocused?

Business Lesson #4: Learn from all experiences, the good and the bad
And finally -- reflection and learning has also played a key role. Whether it's been a great experience or one that's not been so great, identifying the learning and applying in the next step has been critical.
Coaching Questions: What can you learn from your most recent success? What can you learn from your most recent failure?

Some interesting facts:

The US Small Business Association states that only 2/3 of small businesses survive after their first 2 years in business and less than half make it to 4. WOW!

What have been some of the lessons which have served you best in growing your own business?
In closing, I want to thank all of you who have supported myself and Potentials Realized as we've grown. I look forward to many more years of serving you -- and if we haven't had the opportunity to meet - I'd love to connect to see how we might synergize.
Have a fantastic week,
Jennifer Britton PCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Group Coaching Essentials
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960
Email: info{at}
PS- Stay tuned for some of our anniversary month specials and announcements! I'd also invite you to visit our re-freshed Potentials Realized site (our original 2004 site was wonderful, AND it was time for a facelift - I'd welcome your comments on our new one!).