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Coaching is a deeply rewarding profession, but even the best coaches encounter moments of uncertainty and doubt. Here is an insightful look at what being a coach is really like. 

This book will be a compassionate and pragmatic companion for curious coaches and leaders of all kinds.

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S E E   B E L O W

Coaching Stories - Sample
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Being a coach is a deeply rewarding profession, but even the best coaches encounter moments of uncertainty and doubt. In Coaching Stories: Flowing and Falling of Being a Coach, Karen Dean and Sam Humphrey intimately share their varied experiences as executive coaches in 48 stories – some where they were flowing and glorious, and others where they were falling and ashamed.


Each chapter focuses on a different theme, using Dean's 'Exceptional Achievement' framework: setting out, doing, integrating and being. Dean and Humphrey expertly assess topics, including confidence, talent, purpose and fulfilment.

They then reflect on their learning and development at each point. The book concludes with a section on further reading and study, explaining relevant theories and models.

This book will be a compassionate and pragmatic companion for coaches of all kinds, both in practice and in training.

'Karen Dean and Sam Humphrey have done a FAB-U-LOUS job in bringing the reader closer to an understanding of what ‘really’ goes on in the mind of coaches.

Foreword by Craig Revel Horwood; director, choreographer and Strictly Come Dancing judge

I’ve been coached and in turn coached others, first in sport and now far beyond. I know my journey in coaching would have been enhanced by a book like this, where key elements of coaching practice are illustrated with heart-warming stories, all within a cogent coaching framework, from which we can all take something - no matter our coaching background or experience.'

John Amaechi OBE; organisational psychologist, Chartered Scientist, New York Times best-selling author and CEO of APS

'Karen and Sam are up to something, inspiring you to dream, learn and be more of who you are as a coach and leader.'

Steve Radcliffe; leadership expert and author of the UK’s top leadership book Leadership Plain and Simple

'This highly personal account by two seasoned coaches takes you behind the scenes. Packed with numerous real examples from their professional practice Karen Dean and Sam Humphrey candidly describe their ups and downs. By far the most important take away I believe is that through it all they have continued learning - and so will you.'

Ian McDermott; Founder of International Teaching Seminars, creator of 'Mastering the Coach Approach’ and author of The NLP Coach, Your Inner Coach and The Coaching Bible

'What a rare walk alongside two pioneer coaches as they navigate the challenges, set-backs and triumphs emblematic of the journey from beginner to master coach. Their journey is even more admirable when we consider that they began their careers before most of the major professional coaching bodies were in their infancies. Through humility, humour and grace, their stories illuminate how coaching holds the promise of tremendous value, is not for the faint of heart, cannot be done by just anyone, and requires highly specialised knowledge, skills and abilities on the part of the coach. This book shows us how courage, critical reflection, appropriate education and training and a fierce commitment to an ongoing learning journey are imperatives for any coach wishing to offer credible personal or business coaching services today.'

Wendy Johnson; founder, President/CEO of the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches (WABC)

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Karen is a Master Certified Coach accredited by the International Coach Federation, which places her in the top one per cent of ICF-credentialed coaches in the UK and a coach supervisor. She works with senior clients across 22 sectors, worldwide. Karen is the originator of me:my™coach. is an online self-assessment framework for coaches’ continuing professional development.

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Sam is an accredited coach, supervisor, researcher and author. She is one of the founding members of the editorial board for the Coaching at Work magazine and was one of the first 25 people to complete a Masters in Coaching. She is former Global Head of Coaching for Unilever and has more than two decades’ professional coaching experience.

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