Managing Yourself: Are You Ready for a Coach?
The world of work is changing, and fast. Having a successful
career means continual learning and adapting to rapidly
You can't do it alone. Coaching yourself is like the
blind leading the blind: You can't know what you don't know.
Coaching occurs all the time within an organization
as a management or leadership style. But what we are referring
to here is coaching from an executive coach who is professionally
trained and hired externally, and whose sole job is to provide
No universal certification guarantees quality or qualifications.
Former outplacement specialists, therapists, psychologists,
HR specialists and motivational speakers have transformed
themselves into executive coaches. Some have undergone rigorous
coach training programs, and some are talented and highly
intuitive people without formal instruction.
While coaches were originally assigned to those experiencing
difficulties or in danger of derailment, there is now wider
acceptance of hiring coaches for even the most successful
managers. Organizations recognize that people can grow and
change. Having a coach assigned to you often signals career
Who Needs a Coach?
A coach can be most useful at particular career points:
- You are being promoted to a management or leadership
position that requires new skills.
- You lack fulfillment in your present position and
are considering a career change, within the same company
- You are experiencing stress and may be on the road
- You want to improve your ability to manage and influence
others by understanding how to navigate office politics.
- You want to learn better people skills.
- You want to improve your emotional intelligence and
learn to better manage your inner experiences so you
can manage others more effectively.
- You are dealing with global issues: long-distance
responsibilities or actual relocation.
- . You are experiencing diversity challenges that you'd
like to handle better.
- The strengths and talents you brought to your job
are not the ones that will guarantee future career success.
Choosing a Coach
The No. 1 quality anyone should look for in a coach is rapport.
A client needs to be able to trust the coach and feel comfortable
working at a level where real change can happen. The relationship
with your coach is the key.
If you would like to get in touch
with that part of your life may need some work, go to my web
coachpinney.com/Sphere of Life profile and take the Sphere
of Life Assessment. If as a result, you discover some part
of your life is out of balance, take a big step and hire a
Most coaches offer free, no-strings-attached sample coaching
sessions. Take them up on the offer. To make the most of
these calls, bring a specific 'issue' to discuss - the more
specific the better - and actively engage in the coaching
This is actually one of the best parts of choosing a coach.
Where else can you try-before-you-buy like this? Can you
go to a restaurant and sample the fare without paying? Can
you 'borrow' some new clothes from a department store an
walk out without paying for them? Will a taxicab driver
take you somewhere for free so you can test out his traffic-handling
skills? No. No. No. But with coaching, sample sessions are
a big yes, Yes, YES! So do a number of them before selecting
who you want to work with on an ongoing basis.
The most important thing is that you truly connect with
the person assisting you. Look for someone you can speak
with openly, who is not judgmental, and is only there for
Talking with others who have used coaches might also be
helpful, as long as those people can clearly communicate
what was good or bad about their own experience with coaching,
and why. Contacting professional associations with members
who offer coaching is another excellent avenue to obtain
information on possible coaching providers.
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