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client coaching story: Daniel

Daniel Isaac


At a time when our organisation was going through major changes I was asked to take on a leadership role. To support me I was able to engage the services of a business coach.  I chose Jenn after seeing her in action facilitating our company offsite. I worked with Jenn over a period of about three years.

As a leader I had to be effective in change management and provide a structured and supportive path through the stages of change.  I needed to focus on building acceptance and success of change by minimising denial and resistance, encouraging exploration, and accelerating commitment.

Jenn Shallvey’s leadership coaching services provided a customised yet defined approach to help me assess and manage the impact of change for me, for people both in and outside of my team and the business areas I worked in.  Her work also focused on my role in the organisation.  Jenn’s coaching helped me to reduce disruption to the business and enable staff to accept and adjust to the change. The way Jenn communicated was highly effective drawing from her experience and business knowledge including project management and human resource skills.

Through the coaching and on the job experience, I learned that planning and managing culture change is one of the most challenging elements of any project. Understanding the key areas of change management, and the associated traps and pitfalls others have encountered, is critical to achieving success. I now realise that when we ask someone to accept a new business process or job role, we are asking people to embrace the unknown; and anytime we are dealing with the unknown, we should expect a level of resistance. The fact is, resistance to change is not a character flaw, but a normal, healthy survival trait. So what looks like resistance to the change itself is really something different - it is resistance to the newness of the change.

I worked with Jenn to help me to step up as a leader and help my team through more effective change management.  We worked to overcome the natural resistance to change by progressively and systematically removing the unknowns. She helped me manage both individual and group energy that would otherwise be put into resisting change by redirecting this into adapting to the change.

Even with coaching I still learned that there are some aspects of a change process that you are not able to control nor influence.  For me it was therefore important to learn how to deal with the following other factors:

•    Resistance by team members to doing things in new ways.
•    Working within an organisational culture unaccustomed to change.
•    Communication challenges around purpose and plan for change.
•    Follow-through of the change initiative.
•    Developing skills in others to support the change.

Through my experience, reflection and learning I found that organisational change can be difficult to achieve, and that the greatest obstacles are both within the organisation as well as in self and it is how you deal with this that matters.

I found Jenn to be a master in helping coach a leader in transition working with a change management process.  She also assisted me greatly in skill development and my professional growth.

Daniel worked as Operations Manager, State Manager NSW & ACT, National Supply Chain Manager and now National Sales and Services Manager at Gloria Jean's Coffees.