Get to know Steph Allen - Talent Bank Associate

Proud to be one of Norfolk’s Top 100 Inspiring Women 2019


Tell us about yourself

I believe life is for living and there’s nothing better than trying out new ideas; seeing new places and not getting in a rut! That’s why, in 1993, I decided to move out of full-time employment and create a life that enabled me to work with others; help people grow and enjoy every minute! Hence, I set up The Training Spa.


Tell us where you have come from and what has led you to be an associate on EELGA’s Talent Bank

I started as a leadership development manager in a massive blue-chip organisation and fell in love with seeing people grow. It seemed the obvious next step to create my own organisation and, twenty-seven years on, I’m still thrilled I did!

EELGA was looking to offer a post-graduate qualification in Executive Coaching and Mentoring and I won the tender. That was some seven years ago and since then I’ve taken over eighty senior people from the region through the qualification. I am keen to continue my relationship with EELGA hence my desire to offer qualifications and consultancy through the MarketPlace.


Which Sector/Industry do you work in?

The joy of what I do is that it’s never sector specific so I can bring a new approach to all sectors. It’s fair to say that I have created a niche within higher education, scientific research and local authorities, simply through people recommending me. I’ve worked with a couple of universities and scientific institutions for over twenty years, so have a good understanding of those sectors too. I’ve worked in Australia, the USA, the Netherlands, Middle East as well as around the UK.


What are the most significant challenges relating to leadership development posed by Covid?

Agile working is now the new normal and my role has focused on coaching leaders to create an arena of trust, empowerment and wellbeing that enables their people to give their best. Agile working isn’t just ‘working from home’; it’s a whole culture of how we work; where we work and when we work underpinned by a sound understanding of our purpose.

My work with all my pre-covid clients and those who have commissioned me since March has been to consider every aspect of their leadership styles and culture. For many organisations, the move to video delivery has been a challenge, but I’m loving the variation and ability to embrace all aspects of virtual platforms.


How does leadership development influence positive change and results for our members?

Without transformation, organisations will stagnate. For transformation to be effective, leaders need to be curious; collaborative; inquisitive; empowering and constant learners.

My offer, either on a one to one basis, or for groups of leaders and their people, gives them a safe arena where they can share their fears; practice new ideas, test out difficult choices and grow as 21st century leader managers.

EELGA helps leaders get better at what they do through a range of options:

  • we are an accredited ILM Centre, so offer all ILM leadership, management, equality, coaching & mentoring qualifications from level 3 to level 7
  • we offer coaching to middle and senior leaders
  • we work on developmental projects supporting organisational change

Over the last ten years, our qualifications delivery has changed from 100% workshops to around 80% one to one work. We love coaching leaders through qualifications as much as we enjoy workshops!

I encourage anyone undertaking a qualification to contact me whenever they wish so that I can offer formative feedback on their assignments or just to talk through challenges.


And by the way, I don’t use PowerPoint – I encourage interactive discussion, debate and fun!

Could your organisation benefit from Steph Allen’s expertise? Express interest in contracting Steph through her profile on the East of England Talent Bank.