“Our chief want in life is somebody who will make us do what we can.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
What do top successful executives, joyful homemakers and Will Smith all have in common?
They all use a coach to help them live their dreams and be the best they can be. How about you?
What is coaching?
Coaching is a new technology of personal and professional development based on concepts from sports, business, spirituality, psychology and organizational development. It’s for passionate people who want more from their personal and business lives. A coach helps them set larger, more rewarding goals, develop a strategy to achieve them and provide support throughout the process. It’s not unlike having a personal trainer or an athletic coach… transformational, but in a business and personal sense. The achievement of goals is something that comes more quickly as a result of the coaching partnership.
The coaching process not only helps engage a client to create the most potential to reach a stated goal or task, the process also, and simultaneously, helps to raise conscious awareness of the client. In other words, a Certified professional Coach helps you get more of what you really want while helping you to become more of who you really are.
Why does coaching work?
Coaching works when there are two factors present: 1) The client is willing to grow, and 2) There is a gap between where they are now and where they want to be.
Successful coaching clients know the value of sharing ideas with someone who understands them and is subjective enough not to want a lot for them, yet objective enough not to be biased or self-serving. Talking about options with someone who can listen, is often enough to have it all become very clear.
Coaching works because of three unique features:
SYNERGY: Client and coach become a team, focusing on the client’s goals and needs and accomplishing more than the client would alone.
STRUCTURE: With a coach, the client takes more actions, thinks bigger and gets the job done, thanks to the accountability the coach provides.
EXPERTISE: The coach knows how to help business people make better decisions, set the best goals, develop new skills for communicating and restructure their professional and personal lives for maximum productivity.
Where do you start with a coach?
Most coaches begin with a special client meeting or call to get to know each other. The coach wants to hear about the client’s goals, needs, and problems. The client wants to get comfortable with the coach. During this meeting, both parties design a list of goals and a game plan to reach these goals.
How do the coaching sessions work?
Coaching is usually done over the phone. In addition to allowing frequent, regular contact, it makes it easy to stay in the “coaching relationship”, since the client can call from their office, home, car or hotel. The person coached completes a coaching call strategy form prior to each call, describing the current challenges and the progress they’ve made since the last call. Most people are coached two hours a month, in either four 30-minute sessions, three 40-minute sessions or two 1-hour sessions.
The focus of the call is determined by the client. The coach helps them to solve the problems and make the most of the opportunities. When they are missing a principle or distinction, we draw one so they can see a whole lot better. When they are taking on a large goal, we help them design and project and provide the support and structure needed to make sure it gets done. We bring out the clients best by offering advice, expecting a lot, helping them strategize and celebrating the wins. There is often “fieldwork”, where the client is given a formula, new perspective or a challenge to try something in a new way. That forms the basis for the next call.
What happens when you begin a contract with a coach?
You take yourself and what you want more seriously.
You take more effective and focused actions immediately.
You stop putting up with stuff that gets in your way.
You create momentum to achieve more, be more balanced and develop more powerful management skills.
You set personal goals that are clear and meet your needs.
You identify and eliminate the barriers that get in the way of the achievement of goals.
You communicate about what you need and want from others in a more responsible way.
How can a Manager/Executive use a coach?
Coaching creates an environment where there is freedom from judgment and freedom from expectations that executive behave according to typical corporate mandates. In this environment it is safe to question, to appear vulnerable, to observe, to explore, experiment, to learn and change. That allows the executive to use the coach…
…To reach high targets and quotas. Accomplishing this consistently requires a manager who also coaches a team to work together to reach extraordinary goals.
…For business planning, budgeting and goal-setting.
…To integrate business and personal life for balance.
…To prioritize actions and projects.
…For training, developing and managing staff.
…To turn around a difficult situation.
…To handle business or personal problems.
…But know that coaching is NOT psychotherapy, consulting, mentoring or advising….call for a consultation and learn more about this unique and powerful modality!
HOW COACHING COMPARES TO OTHER DISCIPLINES
Consultants have an agenda and some possible answers, and bring that agenda and those answers to the client. They are experts in certain fields. Coaches, on the other hand, have no agenda except to help the client get what he/she wants. Although coaches have specializations in certain fields, their true expertise is in the coaching process. The main difference is that the consultant promotes himself/herself as the expert in certain aspects of life, and the coach accepts that the client is the expert and has within him/her the answer to any situation he/she may face. However, there will be times when a coach acts like a consultant, suggesting new ideas from his or her intuition, knowledge and experience. Unlike the consulting relationship, the coach stays with and “partners” with the client to help implement a plan they both develop. Coaches not only help bring about effective change; they do whatever they can to help the client do what he/she says he/she will do. A consultant usually does not participate in this type of relationship and leaves the client to implement the plan of action on his/her own. A coach is a trusted advisor who provides a confidential and safe environment in which the client can explore his/her issues and concerns.
It’s great to have a role model who has “been there and done that” and will “show us the ropes”, but a coach does not use his/her personal experiences as a model of success for the client. The client is the expert on his/her life. The coach is the expert on the coaching process and helps the client even without first-hand knowledge of what the client has experienced.
Therapy may be similar but the purpose is different- the focus is always on taking client forward.
The therapist’s typical functions are to help clients fix problems, overcome issues, and sometimes manage mental illness. Coaches do not work with mental illness nor spend much time on client issues or problems. In fact, empowerment coaches do not see anything as a problem, only a situation or condition. Coaches focus on solutions. They do not dwell on the client’s past nor try to analyze behavior. Clients may come to the realization that the past is directly affecting the present situation, but this information usually comes from the clients themselves. The past is never the focus of the coaching relationship. Instead, the past is simply recognized and accepted, but the focus is always on taking the client from where he/she is to where he/she wants to be. In summary, the therapist usually helps the client figure out “why” while the coach helps the client focus on “how”.
We all know the value of a best friend. But is your best friend a trained professional who you can trust to work with you on the most important aspects of your life””without giving you his/her own personal advice? Let’s face it, friends usually have their own agendas and, more often than not, they are all too happy to tell you what you should do. Also, friends may not point out various issues you should be addressing, for fear of hurting your feelings. Coaching is a collaborative effort that is solely based on what the clients wants and thinks he/she would like to do. Unlike a best friend, coaches are objective and non-judgmental.