Coaching skills for mentors


This highly interactive, experiential and practical one-day session focuses on the mentoring conversation (as opposed to the mentoring relationship, which is covered by our ‘Mentoring skills’ programme)

The session uses a proven blend of activities, discussion, case studies, role-play, theory, practical tips and hints, and action planning.

Learning objectives

This workshop provides:

  • Key principles of different coaching styles and when to use them
  • A clear, practical structure for coaching conversations within a mentoring context
  • The key skills of an effective coach
  • An opportunity to improve your listening skills
  • Clear, challenging and measurable performance goals
  • A bank of powerful questions to create insight and discovery
  • ‘Instant coaching’ for the busy mentor
  • Methods for adapting your coaching to suit different learning styles
  • Coaching techniques to use within a mentoring context
  • The confidence to provide effective feedback
  • An ‘Instant Coaching’ model
  • Methods to explore sensitive and challenging issues
  • Ideas and suggestions for maintaining your momentum to be a great mentor
  • Clear and measurable action plans


This specialist programme has been designed specifically for those wishing to reach levels of best practice in coaching, using a range of proven techniques, within the particular context of mentoring. This is ideal if you are a manager with responsibility for coaching and mentoring as part of your day-to-day role. It will also support you if you are planning to move into a development role in your organisation.


An interactive and highly practical one-day session, with lots of opportunities to get involved with experiential activites that bring models and theory to life and accelerate the development of mentoring skills.


This workshop can be coupled with our Mentoring skills programme to be delivered as complementary one-day modules or as an immersive two-day workshop.

Expert trainer

David Durkin is a consultant with over twenty years of global experience of developing individuals and groups through workshops, skills training and 1:1 mentoring and coaching sessions.

David has a facilitative and supportive style and enjoys challenging his clients to maximise performance through the development of key mentoring and coaching skills. A pragmatic and logical approach helps individuals to identify their own priorities and actions to optimise their development. An expert in learning, David has a wealth of knowledge of different learning methodologies to improve performance, and has successfully implemented and managed mentoring programmes to support talent development. This mix of strategic knowledge and practical experience of leading major learning and development projects enables him to help others through similar challenges.

Sample comments from participants in David’s events:

  • ‘A really inspiring event – a lot more looking at myself and the impact that I have in a change area.’
  • ‘The common element was the practical application and examples that were used to demonstrate the theory. All sessions were particularly participative.’
  • ‘A fantastic learning opportunity and time to reflect on how the learning will impact your role and others.’
  • ‘A mind-stretching week. Incredible to get the different perspectives from everyone there and has made me think about what does matter and what is important.’
  • ‘Challenging in different ways and provoked a lot of thought during each session. I was completely captivated.’
  • ‘Very inspiring and well led event. Great to see such incredible talent within the group brought out by the facilitator.’
  • ‘There is great enthusiasm across the group. An inspiration for the future and it’s in our hands. Demonstrates what’s impossible is achievable.’
  • ‘Excellent. A really valuable experience – this will change me!’
  • ‘Very different learning to anything I have been exposed to before. Does what it says on the tin.’

Workshop outline

1 The mentor as coach

  • The role of coaching in a mentoring context
  • Differentiating between Mentoring, Coaching and Teaching/Training
  • Different styles of coaching and mentoring
  • The pillars of a great coaching relationship
  • Aligning coaching plans to business goals

2 Coaching conversations

  • Belief in potential
  • Coaching models and frameworks
  • Asking powerful questions
  • Listening skills
  • Skills practice

3 Case study scenarios

  • Activity-based discussions
  • Determining the right approach to different situations

4 Skills practice

  • Practising the skills required for effective mentoring and coaching conversations
  • Practice, observation and providing effective feedback
  • Handling difficult, sensitive issues and challenging situations

5 Building your action plan

  • Discuss the available support (and challenges) for a mentor at your organisation
  • Measure the success of the mentoring relationship
  • Assess your effectiveness as a coach and mentor
  • Action planning

For a no-obligation discussion about running this workshop for your organisation please just give us a call on 01582 463461.