'How coaching helped me'

Laura Banda is a black woman with braided hair

Our guest writer is Laura Banda.

A few years ago, I had the privileged opportunity to be coached by Jane through Result CIC.

I came across Result CIC through a referral from Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit (GMIAU). An immigrant and a single parent with two young children looking for support with applying for a Visa to remain in the UK.

Result CIC was running coaching workshops for staff and clients at GMIAU. At that time, I used to work in the Banking Industry, and I underestimated the power of these coaching sessions, not knowing that a few years later these sessions will be ringing in my ears, and little did I know they could change my life for the better. 

The topic which kept coming up in these coaching sessions was that I had the skills and capacity to run my own business. Six years later when I was made redundant from the bank, this got me thinking about what my next move could be. Should I look for another job? Apply for jobs and wait to be invited for the interview?

I tried on the strength of the experience I gained over the years in banking to look for jobs in Finance.  This was nerve-wracking and difficult due to the Covid outbreak and lockdown measures put in place around the world for the past year. Getting a job was a mission impossible. A lot of organisations were laying off staff; many of my friends have lost their jobs. I didn’t want to look for a job and face the possibility of being made redundant again. I thought about what I could do.

One day I was clearing my paperwork at home, and I found a notebook I used to document notes during my coaching sessions. I read about my set of skills. This gave me the confidence to believe in myself again. 

I started researching what I could do with the skill set I gained over the years through working in the Bank. I set up my own business, Virtual Assistant Xtra, where I work as a Virtual Assistant; supporting businesses of all kinds to maximise their efficiency. My business works as a seamless extension to businesses delivering speed, consistency, and a professional-client service across call handling, diary and email management, document production, travel management, Personal Assistant services, and many more tasks. 

I have now noticed the difference it makes to have such an individual who believes in you and who can coach you to succeed in life. 

These coaching sessions enabled me to feel that my experience is valuable and valued by others. It is the ultimate compliment – and connection.

As the country wrestles with the end of the lockdown, businesses preparing to reopen again, our lives will never be the same again. There will be more job losses, more restructuring, and downsizing.  To many, it seems daunting and terrifying but it’s time to take this as an opportunity and take a gamble to start small, do something that you like with the skills that you have and employ other people and make a change in someone's life.

Visit Laura's Virtual Assistant website here.


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