I'm Catherine Cuffley and I'm an Executive Coach and Leadership Development Consultant.
I help women develop as successful leaders – whilst also achieving balance in their lives.
You know when you have reached a leadership role – at whatever level in the organisation - and you want to keep progressing but you are not sure how to?
You know there are facets of your leadership where you are not so strong – maybe your presence or gravitas, maybe you are overwhelmed by being pulled in too many different directions, perhaps you know you need to improve some of your relationships or network more or maybe you need to be more strategic, both within your role and as you plan your career going forward. Above all, you may secretly lack confidence in certain areas and feel at times that you are not really up to being a leader.
I help women overcome these challenges and fears and Strengthen their Presence, Harness their Potential, Initiate Supportive Relationships, Focus on Strategy and Think like A Leader.
Once people have overcome whatever is stopping them from being at their best and can focus their energy on what will make them shine, they increase their competence and confidence as a leader and often this is recognised and can lead to promotion.
I help people take a balanced approach to the facets needed to excel as a leader – and to ensure a balance with all the other aspects of their life.
"Balance is really important in my life."
Throughout my career, both in HR Roles and as a Management Consultant in the City and now as a coach and Director of my own business, I have always tried to balance the many different dimensions of my role at work, whilst also spending time with my husband and children, looking after my health etc. Earlier in my career, this balance was at times very difficult to achieve.
I am NOT talking about “Having it All”. I think that is a myth. What I am talking about is making choices in life, based on your values and then living your life according to these.
When I was 25 I was involved in a car accident and ever since then have suffered problems with my neck and back. I have therefore had to find a way to ensure I take care of my health through exercise, and managing the stressors. I have had to learn the hard way!
International Coach Federation (ICF)
Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD)
Institute of Financial Services (IFS)
NeuroLeadership Institute (NLI)
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My mother used to say it was important to take time to “sit under a tree and think”. She was right! While I don’t often actually sit under a tree, I do love walking our dog in the woods near where we live. I also find practising Mindfulness is key to enabling me to find that place of inner calm and to help me choose how I think about challenges – thereby making “Thinking Choices”.
My background is in Human Resources and Learning & Development in Banking, Insurance and Management Consultancy. I held a number of HR and L&D roles at Lloyds Bank as well as qualifying as an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers (ACIB) while there. As an HR and Change Management Consultant with Coopers & Lybrand (later PriceWaterhouseCoopers), I worked across a number of sectors including banking, insurance, accountancy and legal and really understand the opportunities as well as the challenges of the corporate world.
I am an NLP Master Practitioner, qualified coach and hold a Certificate in Applied Neuroscience. In my work with many different organisations, I help leaders leverage a deeper understanding of their own brain and that of others to create powerful results. I contributed to the November 2014 CIPD research report Neuroscience in Action: Applying Insight to L&D and speak to groups about applying neuroscience for business results, particularly in order to create tangible and lasting change, at both an organisational and personal level. In December 2014 I facilitated a day-long CIPD workshop on Harnessing the Power of Performance Management through Strategic Alignment and Applied Neuroscience.
I decided to set my own coaching business in order to be able to help more leaders develop across more different organisations – and so I had greater flexibility over how I spend my time. This was a key part of achieving the balance that is right for me.
The name of my business, Thinking Choices, came from my fascination with Neuroscience. Research has shown that behaviours - both helpful and unhelpful - spring from what is happening in our brains. The more we can become conscious of our thoughts and then choose the thoughts we have, the more we can shape our behaviour to help us reach our goals. We can develop genuine Thinking Choices. This is so key for creating transformation in our lives.
As a coach, the more I looked, the more I saw highly capable and successful women struggling to find the balance needed for a sustainable career. I really understand the struggles. My children are teenagers now but I clearly remember the focus required to manage the complexities of childcare – and just get to work looking presentable and composed – let alone perform to the best of one’s ability! Teenagers and aging parents present different demands so achieving balance remains a dynamic and ongoing focus for me.
A Developed Leader is able to achieve balance both within their leadership role and between their work and the rest of their life. I know this makes a vast difference – both in my own life and in those of the countless leaders I have helped.
I’m here to guide, support, and encourage you as you either take your leadership skills to the next level or work towards your first leadership position. We all need a champion. I would love to be yours. Becoming a Developed Leader will help your career, it will help you, and it will help your family and friends as you learn to achieve the brilliant balance which is the hallmark of The Developed Leader.
My Mission is to help as many women as possible to become Developed Leaders. The world needs great leaders but it also needs people to be able to choose other paths in parallel – to be great parents, to be healthy, to contribute more widely to the community- as well as to travel, have fun and live more fulfilling and joyful lives.