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DMU offers free coaching and mentoring to support city businesses

Free mentoring and coaching is being offered to Leicester business leaders during the coronavirus pandemic.

Experienced staff at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) are offering the free help to business leaders looking to adapt to the ‘new normal’ and take their companies forward.

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Andrew Nicholson, Associate Professor Enterprise at DMU, and Alexandra Morgan, senior lecturer and professional business coach, are looking for 10 business leaders to benefit from the sessions, each of whom would receive three free sessions.

Andrew, who has years of consultancy experience with companies ranging from SMEs to global firms, said: “As we’ve all been told repeatedly, these times are unprecedented, and we all need to decide what the new normal is and work with it.

“With this highly uncertain backdrop, business leaders are still expected to manage their teams, maintain or improve productivity, focus on their customers’ needs and create a sustainable future for their business.”

One of Andrew’s mentoring clients is Annie McNeely who has recently left a corporate career as a senior manager for leading lifestyle company Joules to work for herself launching her own consulting business AMc Consulting 

While she was preparing to make the move from full-time work, she was able to turn to Andrew as a sounding board.

She said: “My background is in operations and facilities, which is Andrew’s too so I knew that he understood what I did and also, has been a consultant.

“There are lots of coaches who look at self-management and setting goals, but what I needed was someone with that industry experience and who would have some insight into the ‘bumps in the road’ that entrepreneurs experience.”

One of Alex’s clients is is Amanda Cole, commercial director of marketing and communications company Hundred Brands, a B2B multi-national.

“Coronavirus is going to bring up a lot of issues for businesspeople,” said Amanda. “Having someone to talk through options to help you get that clarity.”

How can coaching and mentoring help me?

Having a coach or mentor will enable you to talk through ideas and decisions – it could be assessing a new direction for the business, new ways of working or simply someone to talk to about pressures and fears. Having someone else’s perspective can be invaluable    
Right now, businesses will need to develop new processes for employee engagement, serve new customer needs, or move in a new online direction. Having a coach’s external perspective can help you to spot ways to redirect resources and internal talent, find efficiencies, and to identify new opportunities to help the business to bounce back better.  

Here’s some typical outcomes from mentoring and coaching:
•    Get productivity back on track
•    Ensure your teams are connected and committed to the organisation
•    Navigate the uncertainty and complexity of the next few months
•    Support with decision making and future planning

Who will be my coach or mentor?

A DMU business mentor will be an experienced business person, used to managing teams and developing customer relationships.

They will provide a trusted sounding board and challenge you with purposeful questions. They will help you formulate plans, make decisions, and ensure you are in tune with the current business environment.  

Your coach will help you find new motivation and purpose in these difficult times and will ensure you align that purpose with your business needs and desired outcomes.

Your mentor or coach can also help you adjust your management and leadership style to the current virtual environment and get the best out of yourself and your team.

What does DMU need from me? 

DMU is offering 30 free mentoring and coaching sessions, of an hour each. 10 business leaders would each receive three sessions. To take part in the programme, you need to be:  

•    100% committed to your own personal development
•    100% committed to your business and your team
•    Able to be open and honest about your current business and leadership concerns
•    Willing to discuss and debate with your coach/mentor
•    Willing to be challenged by your coach/mentor
•    Willing to make achievable and motivational goals for yourself and your business

How do I take part?

•    Email Andrew at  

Posted on Friday 31st July 2020

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