We are pleased to be featuring Cristina Tiberian as our Coach in the Spotlight in this week’s blog. Cristina is a qualified Coaching Academy graduate coach who specialises in career and leadership coaching for purpose-driven female leaders. She is a DISC-accredited specialist and a member of the International Coaching Federation.
Prior to coaching she was an awarded broadcasting journalist and then spent a decade in the charity sector creating strategic charity corporate partnerships. She has two young children and is a big advocate for flexible working and cultivating empathy in the workplace. What has led you to coaching?
In February 2020 I came across an advert about TCA’s introductory course and I signed up. I had just resigned from a senior manager role after experiencing maternity discrimination and burnout. I felt lost and hoped the course would help me figure out where I wanted to go next. By the end of the event I was hooked! Initially, I had signed up to do the diploma so I could gain additional coaching skills (I was already leading in a coaching style), but three months in I decided to pivot and make a career out of coaching.
Most people become a coach to change the lives of others… How has coaching benefited your own life?
Coaching came at such a crucial moment for me. I had resigned without another job to go to and being coached myself gave me the safe space to unpack what had happened. It helped me get my confidence back, get clear on my values and move forward with purpose. It was truly transformational and continues to be. I can’t believe there was a time when I thought coaching was fluffy and not really evidence-based!
How did the qualification slot in with your busy life?
I initially aimed to finish my diploma in 12 months. But then life threw in multiple lockdowns, zero options for childcare, home-schooling, moving house, so in the end it took me 18 months. I remember printing out two postcards that I still have on my memo board above my desk – ‘Remember why you started’ and ‘It’s a slow process but quitting won’t speed it up’. Seeing them every day really kept me going!
What was the most rewarding part of your Coaching journey?
I grew so much both personally and as a coach in those 18 months of studying. And I did it alongside an amazing community of TCA students. The friendships I have formed with TCA coaches are now such an important part of my life, especially as I no longer have a team like I used to in my charity career. And of course, seeing my clients take brave career and leadership decisions as a result of coaching was incredibly rewarding and it continues to be.
Tell us about the work you do! How are you using your coaching skills?
I’m a career and leadership coach for purpose-driven, values-led female leaders. They tend to work in the charity or public sector, in ethical companies, sustainability, CSR, and they care about social impact. In many ways I’m coaching a version of myself from three years ago. Some of my clients want to get clear on their career priorities so they can land their dream jobs, others want to be more intentional leaders. Many struggle with confidence and I have found it helps to re-frame confidence as courage. So, really I’m in the courage-building business.
What’s the biggest area in coaching you are curious about and why?
I’m curious about the future of coaching and our role, as coaches, in normalising the idea of having a coach. I’d love to see coaching become the gym equivalent for the mind, accessible to anyone at different price points, depending on need. I want more people to understand the power of coaching and its huge ripple effect. When someone gets coached it positively impacts their family, work colleagues, team and friends. As I say to my clients, once coached, you can’t be ‘uncoached’!
What advice would you give someone wanting to pursue a life coaching career?
Some advice for the high achievers who are used to doing things perfectly all the time. If you’ve never coached before, getting started can be quite overwhelming because you won’t be very good at it. It took me a while to understand that in order to become a good coach I had to be ok with being a bad coach to start with!
What are the best resources that have helped you along your coach training?
Being coached myself was hugely important as was having a community of peer coaches around me to bounce off ideas, offer support and accountability. I’m a compulsive book buyer so I’ve really enjoyed immersing myself in personal development and coaching books while I was studying, and I continue to have several books on the go at any time. So if you’re like me, a trip to Ikea for more shelving might be in order!
Thank you Cristina for sharing your coaching journey with us!
If you are feeling inspired and would you like to have a coaching business you can run from the comfort of your own home, then do join us on our Introduction to Life Coaching webinar - choose from available dates here.
Are you already qualified as a coach? Our wide range of coaching training events, webinars and courses will enable you to upskill in your career or grow your coaching business – you can see the booking calendar here.
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