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What is coaching?

Professionals in many walks of life including sport and business routinely engage coaches to move ahead in their careers.

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But what actually is coaching? 

The International Coaching Federation (ICF) defines coaching as partnering in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires a person to maximise their personal and professional potential.

Coaches are not in the business of giving advice. Coaching is driven by the client, not the coach. The role of the coach is to discover, clarify and align with what the client wants to achieve; encouraging client self-discovery; eliciting client-generated solutions and strategies; and holding the client responsible and accountable. 

For many, coaching is a life-changing experience that has a dramatic impact on their perspective at work. The process often unleashes previously hidden sources of imagination, productivity and leadership. 

We are committed to helping you take your science to the next level.

Give us a call today.

The First Principles advantage

  • We offer curated tools and strategies
    We pick and choose the best from other people’s work with the thoroughness of seasoned researchers. Our content library is filled with practical tools and strategies, developed by leading behavioural science researchers and curated by us.
  • All our work is evidence-based
    All training and workshop material presented is backed by hard science. We do not make any claims that you cannot verify.
  • We are data-driven
    We track progress on coachee focus areas, goal achievement and session satisfaction. You get the data you need to monitor and act on the outcomes that matter most to you and your organisation.
  • We have walked the walk
    We have a variety of experience at different levels in academia and know that forging an academic career can be tough. It doesn’t have to be. We can help you thrive.
  • We are outsiders
    We know that many young scientists may not feel comfortable speaking openly and honestly with their superiors about professional development challenges. We guarantee total professionalism and confidentiality.
  • We speak a common language
    While each coach brings a unique voice, we all utilise a common framework and tools which contributes to synergy within teams and the organisation’s culture.
  • We have real world experience
    We are a team of diverse, passionate, and successful coaches who have real-world personal development experience and proven track records of achieving results.



Laura’s generous manner and lack of culture/language barriers is a testament to both her deep listening and her global outlook. Her quick and efficient use of online resources meant that not being in the same physical location was never an issue.

Minna Hu, Babraham Institute

No matter how well trained people are, few can sustain their best performance on their own. That’s where coaching comes in.

Atul Gawande, surgeon, founder of Ariadne Labs

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