Interview with Christian Conaster

November 23, 2018

Winning Trust & Influencing Change

Interview with Christian Conaster: Corporate Coaching Manager, Resurgo Consulting

Can you tell us more about Resurgo Consulting 

The charity, Resurgo Trust, began running the Spear Programme in 2004. The Spear Programme coaches 16-24-year-olds from disadvantaged backgrounds through a 6-week programme to help them become work-ready and find employment.

This year, Resurgo’s Spear Programme will coach over 700 diverse young people across London and has worked with over 5,500 young people to date. Thanks to a brilliant team of coaches, of those who have completed the programme, over 75% are still in work one year later.

Resurgo Consulting’s origins are founded in coaching groups of millennials, who now make up the largest segment of the UK workforce. In 2014, we had the opportunity to bring our coaching expertise into London companies undergoing similar changes, managing millennials, and intent on releasing potential in their teams. Working with clients such as M&S, Burberry, and John Lewis, London Imperial Hotels and in industries such as private equity, property management, consulting, and government, Resurgo Consulting is now a key training partner for team communication and developing an effective feedback culture.

What is your role in the organisation?

As Consulting Manager, I work alongside Emily (Head of Consulting) to develop our consulting offering to London companies. My career has taken me through charity work, senior leadership in the retail environment, teaching in higher education, and leadership consulting.

Emily and I consult with London organisations delivering programmes that help whole teams communicate better and manage conflict effectively. The biggest highlight of my week is spending the day with a team, facilitating real discussions, diving into challenging conversations, and watching people truly buy-in to delivering results as a team.
Tell us about Coaching for Leadership?

Coaching for Leadership is our flagship training, based out of our Hammersmith headquarters. For 5 full days, we welcome leaders from across London to introduce coaching into their leadership and management contexts. HR professionals, senior leaders, and line-managers from corporate and charity alike, journey through our course in cohorts of 12. As a recent participant in the programme and now one of the coaches, I can say it is consistently transformational, not just to the leadership styles of those involved, but to being more confident in so many other aspects as well. I absolutely love it.

How are your programmes impacting corporates?

Leaders and managers are feeding back that they have experienced a 180 turnaround in their conversations: oneto-one, team, and organisationally. They deliver  resentations and facilitate meetings with impact, they coach their teams, direct reports, and colleagues towards taking responsibility and inspiring action in the team, especially with Millennials.

Depending on the influence of those involved, it is having a profound impact on the culture of the whole organisation.

What is different about the coaching programmes Resurgo Consulting offers?

Unlike typical corporate training sessions, our coaching programmes inspire the participants to action. We use no PowerPoint, because people won’t have much chance to look at a screen. They are engaged in practise and contributing to a discussion. This is masterfully facilitated by our quality coaching team. With great intuition and experience, each session is being adjusted in the moment to get the most of out every element. Our coaches really listen, then drive participants to transformational outcomes. 

Because Resurgo’s collective history of working with millennials with great affect, our programmes help demystify this dynamic workforce, helping organisation create a thriving atmosphere for them. The effects of our programmes increase productivity, which inevitably impacts the quality of their services and increases their bottom line.
How are you supporting L&D/HR leaders?

As the champions of organisational health, our greatest allies are the L&D and HR leaders embedded in the workplace. Our aim is to equip them with programmes that impact and the evidence that shows its impact, so that they can successfully show the boardroom that thriving cultures effect the bottom line. These L&D and HR directors truly inspire us, a highlight of my week is when we have sit-downs with L&D and HR teams to help them realise their inspiring vision.

What are your corporate clients saying?

“We were trying to build a deep culture of open feedback and learning. Resurgo have taken our culture of feedback to a new level. I’ve seen it in the numbers. Andy Ratcliffe, Chief Executive Officer, Impetus (Private Equity Foundation) “It is difficult to take a topic like ‘giving and receiving feedback’ and try to work on it as a whole firm. Resurgo were able to engage across the whole firm. It was really energising and impactful for our business”– Wol Kolade, Managing Partner, Livingbridge (Private Equity Firm) “The content is really carefully thought through, so there is no waste – the teaching is fast, efficient and there’s enough practice time to embed it. For me it was a perfect level of stretch.” – Sam Stephens, Founding Partner, Macaulay Search (recruitment) “Our most senior management have emerged with a suite of embedded leadership skills that are producing real results – greater managerial confidence, better teamwork, improved employee engagement, more effective delegation and accountability, as well as improved communication.” – Jonathan Gill, Operations Partner, MJ Mapp (property) How is Resurgo Consulting supporting Spear?

All of the profits from Resurgo Consulting serve to fund the Spear centres around London. Practically speaking, for every Coaching for Leadership cohort or one of our tailored programmes, the revenue funds five young people to have access to the Spear programme.

We’re living the dream! Impacting workplace culture in one of the most influential cities in the world, while also providing access to wonderful career opportunities for a diverse, motivated group of millennials whose circumstances may have otherwise not allowed such access. We, and anyone else who choose to take part of this, can feel inspired by what we do.