One-to-One Leadership Coaching

Hi, Pete Ashby here, and thanks a lot for looking at this page about the coaching that I offer Chief Executives.  To start off, can I put up front two words that apply to all of my coaching work:

Confidentiality & Trust

I've coached a number of CEOs, Chairs and Executive Directors over the past few years. If you ask me to give you the names of who I've coached before, sorry, I won't tell you.

I believe that effective one-to-one coaching is a confidential arrangement between two people. I want you to be able to take it for granted that if I become your coach, I won't disclose this to anyone else. 

You have my word on it. I can't put it any stronger than that.  

This principle of confidentiality is vital to building trust. In my view, the levels of trust essential to effective coaching need to be very high. Not just above average, but incredibly high.

I would need you to trust me 100% as being there for you and only you during every minute when I’m working with you as your coach. 

Once we achieve that degree of trust, we can achieve anything.

Step 1: Taking the decision

Okay isn't good enough

When a Chief Executive agrees to take on a leadership coach, there's always an element of risk. You hope that you'll click with the person you've selected. But you never really know until you've spent some time with them.

My approach is to suggest that we meet up and commit between 2 to 4 hours to talking through all that you want to achieve through the coaching. 

If at the end of this session either of us is unsure, we need to be able to say "That was okay - but okay isn't good enough".

We can then shake hands and depart friends, and of course I won't invoice you for a penny. You have nothing to lose.

Only one option from here on

When we're both up for it at the end of this session, let's be confident. From that moment on, let's go for it.

We will have a professional coaching relationship, of course. We will also have a joint endeavour and a shared mission.

That will be about your ambitions and supporting you in achieving what you want to achieve.

Any other option is off the table.

Step 2: Making The Commitment

Saying it as I see it

As a leadership coach, I have a policy from day one of saying exactly how I see you responding in different situations.

I'll tell you what I see as the strengths and gifts that you bring as a leader and also what I see as the not-so-strong aspects of your leadership. I need you to know that I say it as I see it. 

Agreeing an overall kitty of days for at least 6 months

My advice to you is that if we're working together one-to-one, we need to start off agreeing an overall "kitty" of days for my coaching time with you. 

I usually start by agreeing a 6 month period of coaching for a CEO, subject to review at the mid-way stage.  

We agree the time commitment at the outset, and then once that's set, there's no "clock-watching".

Standard practice is for this to involve around 8 days across the period, covering a mixture of face-to-face meetings, FaceTime/ Skype, telephone calls and emails. 

I'm there to support you as best I can, with us both knowing the minimum time commitment on my part.

Minimum of three meetings across the six months

I recommend that we have at least three meetings during this six months where we sit down together in the same room: one at the outset, one at the mid-way stage and one towards the end.

Beyond that, I'm a great believer in keeping flexible, and using a "little and often" approach. 

Whatever balance we agree between emails and phone calls, we need you to feel that I'm alongside you during this whole period. It's not good enough for me just to play catch-up a couple of times a month.

You need to know that you can email me at any time about anything that is of concern to you, and I'll deal with it as a matter of priority.

I won't turn off the laptop at night with an email from you sitting in my Inbox.

Step 3: Focusing on Movement Forward

I'm very clear in my mind that when we work together, we need to avoid any sort of rigid formula.

Process is important, of course. But it's only important insofar as it helps us achieve the results that you want.

Our first priority

In the past, I have often found that before we can focus on you moving forward, we first need to free you from some sort of situation where you’ve got stuck.

We need to get you "unstuck" as early as possible, so that we can then concentrate on you achieving the goals that you want to achieve.

We see the breakthroughs

Nearly always, results require you to achieve certain very specific breakthroughs.

It's the process of achieving these breakthroughs that involves "tough stuff."

During these times, I'll hold an image in my mind of you giving the thumbs up when you achieve what you want.

Getting Started

To schedule an initial discussion for one-to-one coaching, please email me on and let’s fix a time to talk.

Pete Ashby is simply the Gok Wan of leadership

“Pete Ashby is simply the Gok Wan of leadership and personal effectiveness. Working with him 1:1 energised and focused me to become a truly authentic leader.  Pete brings a richness of experience and insights to the most challenging of modern day leadership situations. His work with individuals, teams and Boards is progressive and resourceful. His challenge and skill help us all to be the best we can, confident in our ability to resolve issues in a way that is human and enduring.”

Ann James
Chief Executive, Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust, April 2013

An Unbeatable Combination

“I have worked regularly with Pete since 1995 because he sets new standards in what it means to be an outstanding facilitator and coach.  He completely masters the business issues and has an intuitive grasp of what makes people tick. That is an unbeatable combination”

John Hedger CB, former Board Director of the Department of Education, currently Chair of the Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust. April 2013