Avril ColemanAvril Coleman


  • Degree in English and Drama (University of East Anglia)
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Education (University of East Anglia)
  • Certificates in Christian Counselling and Life Coaching
  • Advanced Diploma in Performance Coaching
  • Registered Test User with the British Psychological Society (Occupational, Ability and Occupational, Personality)
  • Diploma of Higher Education in Theology, Ministry and Mission (University of Durham)

Employment history

  • Worked in training and people development since 1987
  • Co-founder of Cygnet Business Development in 1989
  • Co-founder of Plover in 2003
  • Worked as Programme Coach on Oxford University’s MBA (2004 – 2011)

About Me

One of my key roles as a people developer has been helping clients recognise and make choices that will lead to greater levels of flourishing in their lives. Those choices may be about helping clients identify personal strengths and weaknesses, balancing the many different aspects of life (such as work, family and community commitments), choosing or changing career direction, facing our limitations, recognising and taking opportunities that fit with who we are, developing skills in key areas. I have an encouraging and affirming approach, and use a wide range of tools to provide feedback and input, ranging from psychometric questionnaires to training to one-to-one video coaching to book recommendations.

As a coach and trainer, I have worked with a wide range of people over the years from a variety of different organisations in the public, private and not for profit sectors, and from all organisational levels. I am particularly interested in supporting clients through times of transition, to help them maintain a sense of believable optimism about themselves and their situations. Transitions are often a time of lowered self-confidence and greater self-doubt – having personally been through a variety of transitions in my life so far, I understand that it is important to have the right support so that we can emerge with confidence intact, a deeper understanding of our strengths, gifts and skills, a more constructive awareness of our limitations, and renewed focus for the future.

I also have a strong skill set in helping people develop their relationship, people and communication skills. I often use one to one video coaching to help clients in these areas – I find it is a very powerful means of helping people grow through becoming more confident self-aware and skilful, both in their internal and external skills. I am also interested in supporting women in leadership, and in helping to support the emerging next generation of women as they establish themselves in their lives and work.

I love the potential of the coaching conversation, the opportunity to explore possibilities and reflect on past experience.

I love the potential of the coaching conversation, the opportunity to explore possibilities and reflect on past experience in order to find or refine a pathway forwards. I also love helping clients recognise what works for them, as well as supporting an exploration of where things aren’t working so well and need to change. In my own experience and in my coaching work, knowing both our strengths and our limitations is so important to our long term flourishing.

I have a strong Christian faith, and this gives me an underpinning conviction that – in the words of CS Lewis – ‘there are no ordinary people’. Each individual that I coach is a unique and valuable person, and I want to affirm this as I work with them to help explore what flourishing looks like for them.

I love music, reading, going to the theatre, walking the dog in the countryside, and spending time with my lovely family (which includes twin grandchildren). I attend our local parish church. In my work as a Licenced Lay Minister in the Church of England, I seek to combine my life work as a coach with my Christian faith. I seek to run services that help people connect with the beauty, love, goodness and timeless truth of Christian faith, helping them develop a Christian Spirituality that underpins deeper flourishing in their often complex and pressured front lines.