Kate Blackburn
Tel/Fax: 01458 211 087
Mobile: 07710 553 045
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The primary focus of Kate’s practice is coaching and mentoring to support career development and performance change with individuals, leaders and senior management teams in barristers’ chambers and law firms. Clients are typically managing change, taking the reins in a new role, dealing with new and difficult scenarios, marshalling thoughts and choices or building a new team.

Her coaching work is often generated after a consultancy or training project involving a major change initiative. That has included work with clients to review their organisational structures and systems, develop strategic planning through facilitated away-days, design and deliver training and development programmes for individuals and teams, often using MBTI, and develop recruitment and interviewing processes.

The introduction of competency based interview systems for silk and judicial appointments has created a need for individual training and coaching support, often well in advance of an application, and wider interview training within chambers and law firms. Kate is the lead practitioner on the successful development of this initiative within Sherwood.

Career background
  • Sherwood member since 2004 – coach, facilitator, trainer and consultant
  • Committee Member, Managing Partners’ Forum, South West since 2012 Regular conference speaker e.g. CLT, LPMA and IBC
  • New role as Chief Executive in a leading multi-disciplinary set of barristers’ chambers in Bristol (2000-2004)
    • First set on the Western Circuit to achieve Quality Mark for the Bar
    • Bar Council Working Party; Equality & Diversity – Access to the Bar (2003)
    • Legal Practice Management Association (LPMA) Committee, regional representative (2001-2003)
    • Bar Conference Organising Board (2002-2004)
  • Freshfields where she was initially responsible for a team of 50 administrative staff; her next role was as International Project Manager working directly for the CEO and Managing Partner. This involved integrating different working and national cultures into new office space as part of the firm’s global merger expansion and helping ensure that service delivery standards were consistent across the firm (1991-2000)
  • Officer in the British Army including recruit training with responsibility for introducing weapon training for women joining the Army, two years in the Military Police in Northern Ireland and working in Army Operations in Whitehall during the first Gulf War (1983-1991)
  • Use of TKI Conflict Mode Instrument (2013)
  • Mindfulness course through The BPS - in the context of coaching psychology (2012)
  • Meyler Campbell Business Coaching course (2009-2010)
  • Qualified as an MBTI practitioner (2009)
  • Meyler Campbell Psychology for Coaches course (2008)
  • NVQ Assessor, Freshfields and Law Society accredited trainer (1999)
  • MBA in Legal Practice, Nottingham Law School (1996-1998)
  • BSc (Hons) Institutional Management, Cardiff University (1980-1983)
Outside Sherwood Kate loves skiing and yoga (not at the same time!), is a member of the Somerset bench (adult and youth), has published a local community magazine and the bench newsletter and is also kept busy training her boisterous black Labrador and taming her huge (wild) garden. Whilst she lives in Somerset most of her clients are in London.