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Applying the Lens of Social Movements to Coaching and Mentoring

J Gannon Philosophy of Coaching: An International Journal 2021

The rise and development of coaching and mentoring in recent decades has led to a plethora of debates around their theoretical and disciplinary roots. Alongside these debates are deliberations about the role of coaching and mentoring in contemporary threats, such as the financial crisis, climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as wider societal issues of inequality and disadvantage, and empowerment and democratization. In this theoretical paper, I draw on theories and ideas from the field of social movements to explore coaching and mentoring, and their deployment in relation to these contemporary societal, economic and political threats. By exploring key conceptualizations and themes from social movement theory, as well as the classification of social movements, it is possible to reflect on the maturity of coaching and mentoring and its potential to deliver social change. Such insights offer exciting and thought-provoking insights for coaching and mentoring practitioners, commissioners, professional bodies, trainers and educators, mentees and coachees as well as social movements.

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