Volume I Issue 1, 09/2003
Welcome to the first edition of The International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching! The idea of the journal reflecting the various interests of the mentoring and coaching community was first raised some 10 years ago! The idea has had a long incubation period but now it has come of age.
The journal has two main sections: Reviewed and Professional papers. The Reviewed papers have three categories:
And the Professional section also has three:
The academic reviewed papers section rigorously follows conventions of all academic journals in the form of double blind peer review Harvard style referencing. While the professional practitioner section is subject to rigorous editorial review. Both sections provide good quality writing and interesting comment.
We also welcome book reviews.
In this edition we have collected papers from the UK and the US and a wide cross-section of sectors are represented from consultants working in business to educationalist working with young people. The IJMC welcomes papers from all fields of mentoring and coaching.
The field of mentoring and coaching is expanding rapidly and with this expansion comes many challenges. Mentoring and coaching activity is found across the full spectrum of human activity from school children to top executives. Many of the issues raised in these contexts are in fact very similar – What do we mean when we talk of mentoring and or coaching. Is there a difference? Does the difference matter? What about codes of conduct? Standards and qualifications? Accreditation and supervision? What is the current state of research in the field? Are just some of the concerns and then there are the issues of process, relationship building, scheme design and management, skills development, boundaries, evaluation and ethical issues.
The IJMC welcomes papers on all these issues and any others not mentioned.
The Papers Peer Reviewed
We have four papers in the academic section. The first is a research paper from the US by Troy Neilson and Regina Eisenbach. It is an interesting piece of research that focuses on the quality of mentoring relationships and the nature of the meetings. Using structural equation analysis, Neilson and Eisenbach clearly demonstrate the strong links between the quality of mentoring relationships and mentoring productivity. This research is important and provides those in the mentoring and coaching community with some helpful data which can be applied in a range of contexts. For example, in mentoring for diversity, the results of this research clearly show that the necessary ingredients for good quality mentoring are similar values and attitudes as well as high quality feedback within the relationship which makes the difference. This finding challenges the idea that it is important to have similar gender or racial backgrounds in mentoring pairs as a prerequisite to high quality mentoring.
The second paper from Paul Stokes and Lis Merrick offers us some insights into the challenges of mentor supervision. It draws on research and offers up a model of supervision for critique. This is early work on an important issue but it does represent a move forward in this debate and provides us with a starting point.
The third paper is in the “debate” category and raises some important issues in the field of youth mentoring. It is the result of some collaborative work led by Prof Ray Pawson. Again, it is early work. The paper also raises issues about the nature of the various approaches to mentoring research and attempts to take a pragmatic line on the subject. You may like to join in the discussion on this one.
Following on from the Pawson paper, in the “personal view” category, David Clutterbuck offers us a view on approaches to research. David is calling for a better understanding of mentoring through high quality research. Here he is perhaps suggesting that in the UK we need to do more research in the US tradition to really start to understand the issues. Perhaps you would like to reply in the next edition?
The Papers – Professional
We have five articles in the practitioner section. The subject of supervision has been the topic most hotly debated so far on the European Mentoring and Coaching Council’s new discussion forum. There are strongly held views both for and against. In this our first edition we hear the case for supervision. That comes from the Chair of the EMCC Standards and Ethics Group who outlines his personal views on the role of supervision in coaching.
We also hear from Fiona Eldridge and German-based Sabine Dembkowski about their newly developed coaching model. This is likely to be of interest to coaches who can use it to structure their coaching practice, and also to those hiring coaches who can use it as a selection tool.
There are two interesting articles offering cases of practice. The first concerns one individual and her coach. You may remember “Ruth” from Radio 4’s series on coaching as a stress-busting technique. For the inside story of coaching under the media spotlight, we asked Ruth’s coach Pauline Willis to offer us her story.
The other case study article outlines the experience of two employers, Cable and Wireless (World-wide) and a UK government department, in using coaching in conjunction with 360-degree feedback. It has been written as a result of reflections between the coaches and company sponsors involved so there should be some interesting insights.
Finally, for this edition’s focus piece, we asked Stockholm-based EMCC member Lena Mangell and her colleague to give us the low down on coaching and mentoring in Sweden.
Please do email us and say what you think about this first edition of the e- journal. We will be really pleased if you think it’s great: make sure you subscribe – well, we have to get an advert in somewhere! We’ll be equally pleased if you write and explain why you didn’t like it. Even better would be if you felt the need to write an article for us.
Bob Garvey and Alison Carter
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