Home Research History of Coaching Lew Stern Interview: Research on Professional Coaching

Lew Stern Interview: Research on Professional Coaching

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Interview Conducted by Bill Carrier

Bill Carrier:  Lew, thank you again for investing some of your time and talking about the research that you’ve done, and your experience and insight on research in general.  I’m looking forward to this conversation.

Lew Stern: Thank you.

Bill Carrier: I thought we would start out by taking a quick look at your background.  Can you help us understand a little bit about what you’re doing and your portfolio of research?

Lew Stern: Sure.  I’m not a researcher.  What I am is an organizational consulting psychologist and business consultant, and also very heavily involved in the development of the professional discipline of coaching.  Since I am a scientist, I believe that any professional discipline needs to be based on what you know from data that is scientifically derived as opposed to just hearsay.  As such, coaching needs to be evidence-based and data-based and research-based.

As a result, I’ve become significantly involved in driving what kind of research gets done and how it gets done within the coaching field, especially the executive coaching field, the leadership and organizational coaching field.  I’ve also been deeply involved in the standards for coaching and the standards for the education and training and certification of executive coaches, as well as in the dissemination of information as the field of coaching quickly and continually morphs.

Yes, I do research, and I’m always doing some kind of research in coaching, but my primary focus is the practice of coaching with senior-level executives and their teams, both in the for-profit and especially—and now primarily–in the not-for-profit sectors, especially in the areas of environmental preservation and in promoting the peaceful resolution and suspension of conflict on an international basis, and in the quality of life especially for those in greatest need.

I do education and training; I speak, I write articles, I write books, I do research, and that’s all in my spare time.  In my regular time in my semi-retirement, I am also selecting clients, a few of them in best-in-practice, mostly for-profit organizations who really are committed to doing the right thing and doing it the right way; and on leaders and best practices, for example in financial services, in biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, in medical delivery, in scientific research, those kinds of situations. Some are also in the delivery of consulting and coaching services within the nonprofit sector, especially institutes, research institutes, NGOs and nonprofits that promote change making and change leadership for the benefit of worldkind, for the future generations.  That’s pretty much what I do.

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