Recently back from Russia having provided some corporate and individual coaching in Novosibirsk, we caught up with Marina Kogan to find out a bit more about her life as a Coach and feature her as our next Coach in the Spotlight. To find out more, read on...

What brought you to coaching?

With my background of a teacher and a sportswoman I was always aware how much potential each of us can explore and develop further. The trigger in the direction of coaching was meeting with a lady over 60, who carried the trauma of her relationship with her mother since she was a teenager. She was talking sincerely about it, probably for the first time in her life and obviously as a human you are trying to help – I was using my sport mentality: exercise, posture, state of mind – and it was an obvious shift in her mood. So I came back home (the meeting was abroad) and did some research about the subject and came to the idea of coaching.

What were your original thoughts for applying the coaching?

After that meeting with that lady I thought how many people are stuck with the certain life baggage, losing direction, not living their life but “hiding” from it. I was wondering if there was any psychological approach which could help people to resolve their issues and empower people. Coaching seemed to offer the most empoering solution. 

What was your profession before becoming a coach?

I started my career as a linguist, teacher of languages and interpreter, working in the Russian Federation and UK. Later I worked as an International Marketing Manager for an educational company and had a small business dealing with educational projects as well.

What did you find most interesting to learn?

I think coaching has a philosophical approach to life – in different stages and ages we all wonder about the meaning of life and what we can do about it. In coaching you are so action orientated, and that’s what wasappealing to me – your own philosophy together with your own action plan.

What was the most rewarding part of the training/journey?

The friends I’ve met at The Coaching Academy.... the journey together, personal growth and discoveries. Have I mentioned Friends?

Which bits did you enjoy the most?

The practical sessions which myself and fellow coaches held with each other, when we were still new to coaching and ...suddenly those amazing outcomes! We were in such wonder to believe what just happened - Priceless!

How did the qualification slot in with your current life?

It is my business now and I enjoy all aspects of it – from personal coaching to corporate. It was a bit of jungle for me to start my own coaching business but I couldn’t wait to start practicing.

Where are you now? How are you using your coaching skills?

I am just back from Russia, Novosibirsk – the capital of Western Siberia, delivering a number of corporate workshops for the company BASS, the company is dealing with wallpaper – from design, to production, to retail distribution. The workshops were aimed to empower personal development – confidence building, stress management and introducing NLP for shop assistants.

There were a few personal coaching clients as well, who were amazed by their own outcomes and shift in their state. It was my first coaching experience in Russia, I had a few private Russian clients in the UK but obviously not corporate.

As for British market I have a number of personal clients from different walks of life and from doing workshops. I've been invited as an after dinner speaker to BPW (Business and Professional Women UK limited), was doing presentations at Chwarae Teg, Agile Nation (a European Social Fund and Welsh Government funded project), North Wales Women Network and others.

As one of the directors of the social enterprise “Coaching Well” (there are 3 of us) we organised “Communities Can 2012” conference for 250 people, this inclusive and innovative conference was the first event of it's kind in Wales. It aimed to help people and their communities realise their ‘inner brilliance’.

The organisers were professional coaches from a variety of backgrounds and with a wide ranging set of skills.

What is your coaching niche and why did you choose it?

I am an Identity Coach and it came from my personal experience since I’ve changed countries and as a family we had to start a new life in the UK.

What is the best thing that could happen to your coaching business in the next 2 years?

It is really exciting to work in both British and Russian markets: new further developments in UK with my partners and friends - a few workshops in the pipeline, some research and development in the coaching field and always work with my personal clients. After this trip to Russia I established links with Academy of Professional Coaching and Training – ERFOLG, so it will be interesting to develop new ways for cooperation.

What do you enjoy most about being a coach?

I find being a coach an unbelievably creative process and you never know where and how you are going to end with clients. When they find their outcomes, sometimes they are surprised, happy and even bewildered how all this amazing action happened. It is so rewarding to see how people can turn their lives around, resolve difficult issues and empower themselves.

What are your tips for:

  • People who are looking at coaching?

I think you go to this profession if you love people generally and believe in their potential, then you deal with your own personal development and grow with each of your clients as well.

  • Those coaches currently in training?

I would say practice as soon as possible for you to feel, see, hear how it works, to experience your client’s progress and to celebrate the joy of your own success.

  • Coaches that are about to qualify?

Follow the guidelines... it is quite straightforward. You’ll be fine.

  • People that are in a similar situation to yourself?

Get in touch, maybe we could do something together. Good luck! Isn’t the world fantastic place?!

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