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This is a bit of a longer post than usual as I want to take some time to outline my new approach.

Since 2003 when I completed my Trainer Training with Richard Bandler my focus has been on running scheduled public courses, largely NLP certifications (NLP Practitioner, etc). I would probably say it was 80% of my work, with 10% seeing one to one clients and 10% in-house training courses.

However since my wife and I had our first child in 2015 we decided, as my work is more flexible, that it made sense for me to be the main carer for our child, so I cut my hours back significantly to do this. On the birth of our second child last May it became obvious quite quickly that trying to run scheduled trainings was not the best approach for my new lifestyle. So after a lot of thought, I have decided to change my focus and move away from scheduled courses for the foreseeable future and focus more on one-to-one and bespoke courses instead.

Below is an outline of my new focus, the site is still (!) being updated so some of the content does not reflect my new approach (especially the “training” page, I am on it, honest…):

Private Tuition

I have done a lot of private tuition through the years – I started pioneering online one-to-one tuition in 2008. Working with people who don’t want a full NLP qualification but wanted to learn how to use NLP in specific situations, want to revise their NLP skills or want an introduction to what NLP and Coaching is.

Please note: I cannot offer NLP certification training as one to one.

You can find more details here.

Bespoke Training Courses For Organisations

This is largely unchanged, I have been offering in-house trainings since I began offering trainings in 2003. Anything from half day taster sessions to full multi-day qualification trainings.

You can find more details here.

Boutique Qualifications For Small Groups

This is the biggest change I am making.

I like the word “Boutique”, it means “a business serving a sophisticated (!) or specialised clientele.” Boutique essentially means “small scale” and personal with an eye on quality. This was always my approach to training, but offering them in a scheduled manner always meant you are making a comprise about offering a unique and quality training and getting enough bums on seats to make sure you had enough people to run the thing! The Boutique courses are “on demand” so, rather than advertising specific dates, these will be organised as and when for small groups.

You have a couple of options:

  1. If you have a small group (3+) we can organise a course at your convenience. Location and timings can be arranged around your schedule and we can focus on the results you want.
  2. If you are an individual, I can add you to a “wait” list and contact you when there are enough people to run a course, we can then arrange times around you.

You can find more details here.

One to One Coaching

I love coaching! I like the immediate feedback that what you are doing is working (or isn’t!). In a training course you may get feedback from the delegates during the course or from solicited feedback at the end, but you never really know if the course has made a significant impact on someone until much later on, if at all (many delegates just vanishi…).

However I always sacrificed getting coaching clients to focus on promoting and organising courses. My change in circumstances has allowed me to flip the focus so I can now predominantly focus on one-to-one work (coaching and tuition).

Having been coaching for nearly 18 years, I have had lots of experience in lots of different fields and now want to focus on the areas that really interest me. Here is a list of just a few – I will give more details on each in future blogs.

  • “High Performance”
  • Outcome Orientation
  • Critical Thinking
  • Happiness and Resliiance
  • Mindfulness based caoching
  • The Slow Philosophy

You can find more details here.

Supervision and Mentoring

Without meaning to blow my own trumpet, I have had a reasonable amount of experience as a coach and as a coaching and training business owner and I have been using that knowledge to offer supervision and mentoring. I really enjoy watching peoples success grow – their success feels like my success.

You can find more details here.

If any of this has piqued your interest and you want to know more, please do get in touch.

Matt

If you are purely interested in NLP for personal development then you can do as little or as much reading, practice and training as you want, but if you use NLP in a professional capacity you need to be doing regular Continued Professional Development (CPD) and Supervision.

NLP is very lightly regulated, on balance this is a good thing, it allows the field to grow and develop in interesting and often unexpected directions. If it had become a tightly regulated “therapy” when it was first developed we would not be seeing the fascinating and powerful applications that have been used in eduction, business and sports and the field of coaching would be missing out on a huge chunk of methodology.

However this light regulation does have it’s downsides.

With no one recognised body taking control of qualification and regulation it has meant that anyone can set themselves up as an NLP trainer, offer certification (even if it just one they have made up!), or as NLP Coaches and Therapists with very little experience and there is no prerequisite for Continued Professional Development or Supervision.

In any other professional coaching or therapy career there is a formal requirement for CPD, including follow up trainings and one to one supervision.

What Is CPD and Supervision?

CPD is a way of ensuring you are up to date with your skills and expertise and you are offering the best professional support that you can.

It is often either not mentioned or overlooked in the coaching and “alternative therapy” field that you, as a professional practitioner, have a legal duty of care to your clients, part of this duty of care is to make sure you are offering appropriate and up to date interventions. CPD is a way of ensuring this.

Supervision is a regular one to one meeting with a colleague, peer or mentor to discuss issues arising within your sessions. This can be formal supervision, arranging regular sessions with a supervisor or (because there is no official requirement for CPD in NLP) a more informal approach of chatting to a colleague over a cup of coffee.

How Much CPD is Enough CPD?

Because NLP does not have any formal requirement for CPD, the onus is on the practitioner to make sure they undertake appropriate development; it is your responsibility to make sure you are carrying out relevant and sufficient CPD.

It is very difficult to put a figure on how much is enough, different professions have different requirements, we need to look to similar fields to give us a guide. The British Psychological Society (BPS) suggest half to one days CPD a month plus an hours supervision per week, so on average you should be aiming for at least 12 days CPD a year as well as regular supervision sessions. Depending on the amount of clients you see and the experience you have you can probably do supervision less regularly than once a week.

What Counts as CPD?

There are 4 ways you can make sure you are doing the required amount of CPD:

1. NLP Books and Learning Products

There is a vast array of NLP books, CD’s, DVD’s and learning products out there. It is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to do regular CPD. I am constantly watching, listening and reading (and re-watching, re-listening and re-reading!) NLP and related books, CD’s and DVD’s. Some are better than

NLP Times creates some great audio and video courses from NLP Master Trainer Michael Breen, which I use regularly (click here for more), NLP Life Training (here) offers trainings and products from Dr Richard Bandler and the official Society of NLP store is here. And, of course, there is always Amazon or your local bookstore for the vast array of NLP books around.

2. Attend A Practice Group

Practice groups are incredibly popular in NLP and most areas will have one or more groups. They are great way of practicing your skills, networking and getting peer support. I highly recommend that anyone interested in NLP, but especially for those who are using NLP in a professional capacity.

To find a practice group local to you go here.

3. Attend Regular Trainings and Master Classes

Once you have completed you initial training that is not the end of your learning experience and it is important to attend other courses and seminars to “top up”, review and  extend your knowledge.

I offer a series of Master Classes as well as the chance to redo your NLP training with me at a fraction of the cost (even if you haven’t trained with me in the past).

4. Supervision

In any other professional coaching or therapy field it is standard for the professional to undertake regular supervision sessions.

Supervision is discussing (be careful not to breach confidentiality and the data protection act) clients with another equally (or preferably more experienced) therapist or coach. You can talk about concerns, issues and questions that you have and the supervisor can offer suggestions, guidance or simply an alternative point of view.

Click here to learn more about the Mentoring and Supervision that I offer.

It is important to keep a record of your CPD; note down what books your read, what courses and practice groups you attend and any supervision you undertake.

This post is not designed to frighten you, but to make you aware of your responsibilities as a professional practitioner of NLP. If you are just starting out, it is important to make sure you have a CPD framework in place and if you are a seasoned practitioner maybe it is worth reviewing your CPD.

One of the most common criticisms of NLP is its unprofessionalism and I would argue that it is those that have chosen to use NLP in a professional capacity should be the ones demonstrating its professionalism, one of the most important ways of doing that is to be able to demonstrate your own regular CPD framework.