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Sara Corcoran

Consulting Fellow

Sara is an executive coach and facilitator, with a passion for helping people realise their potential and making the experience of work as good as it can be. She has a public sector background, with 20 years’ senior HR (Human Resources) and OD (Organisational Development) experience in higher education (including 11 years at Director level) and more than a decade in the NHS. In addition to contributing to the strategic leadership and development of the organisation, her roles have included supporting managers and their staff through restructurings, relocations and mergers, as well as the more day-to-day issues arising in employment and career development. Constants throughout her career have been the need to understand the wider stakeholder system, the need to support people through change and the need to attend to team effectiveness, with a focus on interpersonal skills and communication.

Whilst now focusing on her coaching practice, she continues to work as a consultant, supporting employers with team and organisational development, change management and occasionally with sensitive HR casework and conflict management. Having adopted an approach of ‘serious work with a lightness of touch’ from an early mentor, Sara finds that building trusting relationships, taking a pragmatic approach and, when appropriate, adding a little laughter, make work much more enjoyable.

In her coaching practice, Sara works holistically, coaching the whole person, not just the work role. Whilst clients hold responsibility for their choices and actions, she works with them collaboratively, through a range of approaches, tools and techniques, to help them realise new insights and progress towards their goals. Often these include bringing clarity to their decision making; developing greater self-knowledge; understanding the organisational context and culture; and improving team dynamics. Increasingly, she is taking her practice outdoors, removing the constraints of the office and incorporating the external environment as a rich resource in coaching conversations.

Sara is a Fellow of the CIPD, Co-Chair of the OD in HE network, a Board Trustee of the Association of University Administrators, a Governor of Writtle University College and a Director of the New Wolsey Theatre. Her interests include reading, dancing, walking, watching rugby, theatre, and travel. She is also the very proud mother of two incredible young men.

Sara has Senior Practitioner Individual Accreditation with the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC), an MSc in Strategic Training & Development from the University of Surrey and an MA in Educational Research from the University of Sussex.