Debashish, Vice President of Human Resources, Africa Eurasia Division, Colgate Palmolive Company, explains how the MSc in Coaching & Behavioural Change stretched his comfort zone and influenced his leadership style.
MSc in Coaching & Behavioural Change
Debashish, tell us why you enrolled on Henley’s coaching degree programme
‘I first came across Henley back around the time of the millennium while I was working in London, and I was aware of Henley’s fine reputation as a management institute. So when I was researching for a coaching programme in 2016, I came across the Henley programme and was impressed with its structure and content, as well as with the teaching methodology. I liked the fact that the MSc programme offered the depth of coaching knowledge that was underpinned by behavioural and neurolinguistics sciences.
‘My own experience of coaching was limited to what I’d learned on the job, so I wanted a comprehensive framework around which I could develop my understanding of coaching and behavioural change.'
And what have been the surprises and highlights of the programme so far?
‘I started my MSc by doing the Professional Certificate in Coaching. This was a great introduction to coaching, and convinced me more than ever that I had made the right decision in enrolling for the MSc in Coaching & Behavioural Change.
‘I have been impressed with the structure and rigour of the programme. It’s a combination of classroom modules, interspaced with practice sessions – as a coach and as a coachee – and with lots of reflection and analytical work.
‘The reflection leads to greater self-awareness and this has given me an even greater sense of curiosity in continuing the exploration. While most of the modules we’ve done so far have mainly been based on clinical and social spaces, I can already see how these learnings can be applied to business environments and with business leaders.'
What changes have you noticed in your own behaviour as a result of the programme?
‘I find myself being more reflective, actively listening with empathy and not rushing to offer solutions. I see myself as being in dialogue with business leaders or even young talent, to help facilitate a clarity in the thought process by asking the right questions, and simplifying the issue that they are dealing with. This then helps them prioritise and focus on the key issue at hand, and gives them the confidence to come up with the right solutions.'
What makes Henley different for you, and what advice would you give to anyone thinking about enrolling on the MSc in Coaching & Behavioural Change programme?
‘Henley has created a space that is conducive to learning. The programme has been cleverly constructed to allow you to learn from each other, as well as from the expert tutors and outside practitioners.
‘The programme and the coaching practice sessions have been designed to stretch you beyond your comfort zone. This is an important element in the learning process, to develop your capability.
‘Being a learner in this programme also comes with a responsibility to participate in the learning experience of the group by actively sharing your learning and experiences with the group and learning from one another. I’d rate this as a very good programme.'