Why coaching statistics is the best career move I’ve made

Today I wanted to blog about something a little bit different: why I love coaching statistics. 

You might not know this about me, but there are two sides to my business. One of them is consultancy for commercial and academic organisations, the other is coaching health researchers 1:1. 

For my colleagues in academia, that latter half of my business is a bit of a mystery. So today, I’m pulling back the curtain and telling you everything about why I do what I do, and why I love it so much. 

My route into statistics coaching

Before I set up my own business, I had been an academic researcher for over 10 years. To begin with, I loved it, but when I became a mum, it stopped working for me. I struggled to get the balance right, despite seeing other mums who did make it work.    

It was while on maternity leave after having my second baby that I had the chance to really think about what I wanted to do long-term. I realised if I didn’t take the leap out of academia then, I probably never would. 

So I decided to make a complete pivot. I went into industry and worked as an analyst and project lead for the retail industry – completely different from the work I had been doing as a medical statistician in a university!

I really enjoyed working in industry. It was such a positive experience, working alongside a great team and a supportive manager. During that period of my life, I learnt a lot and I’m really glad I made that move. 

But, despite all of these positive things that happened, I realised fairly quickly that my heart still really lay in health research. I missed that aspect of my academic career, as well as some other aspects too. So, while on maternity leave for my third baby (maternity leave is clearly a period of change for me!), and after a few chance conversations, I took an even bigger leap of faith. Instead of going back to work, I started my own business! 

my route into coaching statistics, the best career move I've ever made!

The two sides of my business


My consultancy work keeps me in touch with everything I loved about working in academia. In this way, my business is a little bit like a jigsaw! I take the bits I loved about academia, and fit them together with the things I love about coaching. In the process, I’ve left behind anything that didn’t serve me. 

In this role, I do a lot of hands-on work for people. As well as designing studies and carrying out analyses, I write grant applications and papers, and do critical reviews and edits of these for people too. The people I’ve worked with have all found my input and my writing skills incredibly valuable. Often, the scope or direction of the project will change for the better as a result of the insights I’m able to offer when I do a review and/or edit. It’s where I find my dual skill set of statistics and medical writing really shining!

I love working in this side of my business, and would love to do more of this sort of work in the future. So if you’re looking for some ad hoc help in your institution, just drop me an email – I’d love to hear from you!


As a lecturer in my academic career, I did lots of 1:1 supervision of postgraduate students and clinical posts. This was either as a formal supervisor for their projects or sometimes more of a statistical supervisor. In this role, I would often find myself explaining statistical concepts in different ways until it clicked. 

I loved seeing the change in the people I helped and those lightbulb moments when it clicked into place! The most rewarding thing I would hear was “You’re the first person who’s been able to make sense of that for me!”

I loved this role so much that when I set up my business, I knew I needed to make sure I kept that 1:1 model. I wanted this programme to be tailored, so that it would make a real difference to the client. 

Why coaching statistics is the best career move I've ever made!

My coaching programme

Most of my clients have done some statistics at uni but are struggling to translate that into what they do now, and that’s caused them to lose their confidence with stats. Instead of having to take the time out to do a full-blown statistics course, they come to me, to focus on the specifics of their research. 

Together we go through the process step-by-step, stripping things down to the basics and helping them to get back on track. It’s hugely rewarding, and I always look forward to working with these clients too. If you’d like to know more about this process, I’ve written a blog about it that goes into more detail.

I’ve also now launched a membership to help provide this coaching to more clients at a more affordable rate than my 1:1. I’m so excited about being able to provide this along with my co-founder Isabelle. You can check out the details here.

Why I love it

On a personal level, coaching fits into my life perfectly. When I worked in academia, there was always so much going on! Even though I loved my mentoring and supervision, it was hard to find the time to fit this in. 

Now it fits into my day because I’ve purposely set time aside. As cliche as it sounds, I can show up really present and be in the moment with my coaching clients. It’s meant that something I like feels even more positive now – and the wins my clients get are proof of this!

why I love coaching statistics

Does this sound like something that could help you?

If you’re reading this blog thinking “yes, I need help with this!” I’d love to chat more about how I can support you. Whether it’s my consultancy work or 1:1 coaching, just drop me an email at danielle@simplieddata.co.uk with the details and I’ll be in touch to book your free call.

Or, if 1:1 coaching isn’t your bag, but you need a little bit of day-to-day support, my membership ‘The Health Researcher Clubhouse’ could be the perfect next step for you. There’s fortnightly group coaching and a Q&A, guest training sessions, networking opportunities, and loads more to keep you on track and help you to achieve your goals. Join today by clicking here

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