Achieving Peak Performance
New Horizons in Management series
Edited by Cary L. Cooper and Ronald J. Burke
Carianne Hunt and Sandra Fielden INTRODUCTION This chapter presents an evaluation of an online coaching initiative Tailored E-Coaching – (TEC), designed to increase the success of women small business owners and managers in the UK.1 Forty-four women took part in the programme and they received online coaching over a six-month period from an experienced woman business owner. Their progress was compared with a control group of 26 women, who were also entering small business ownership but did not participate in the TEC initiative. This chapter will detail the rationale behind the TEC programme and provide an outline of the programme, including the recruitment and matching process, pre- and post-events, the website and evaluation. It will then examine the impact of the programme, specifically examining the selfefficacy, locus of control and general entrepreneurial attitudes of coachees compared with a control group, and then explore the general benefits of the programme for all participants, coaches and coachees. It will conclude with a summary and recommendations for programme improvement. RATIONALE FOR ONLINE COACHING Women business owners often lack the support, guidance and experience that they require to be successful in business ownership. However, women are not accessing the business support that is currently available, particularly when compared with their male counterparts (Carter et al., 1997; Fielden et al., 2003; Harding, 2004, 2006; Stranger, 2004). Despite the relatively low number of women accessing business support and the importance of providing support for women business owners, there appears to be a lack of research examining what...
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