You may have heard of a friend or work colleague talking about or receiving coaching. Perhaps you have thought about reaching out to a coach but wonder, “What exactly IS coaching and how could it help me?”
Simply put, coaching is working in partnership with a trusted, qualified professional to help realize a desired change you want to make and/or a goal you want to reach in your work or personal life.
The process typically starts by the coach and client initially meeting to discuss the goals for coaching. Before this initial meeting, the coach may forward a series of questions for the client to consider to organize their thoughts and provide background for the coach.
As I will explain in a future blog post, I believe this initial meeting is the most important. Clear goal setting sets the stage for a successful outcome; the clearer and more focused the goal(s) for coaching, the more successful the coaching will be for the client.
Examples of potential reasons for hiring a professional coach might include:
- Uncertainty about career performance or advance opportunities in current organization
- Personnel issues with management and/or colleagues
- Mid-life career assessment
- Stress management
- Work-Life Imbalance
- Career Transition
- Learning to better navigate an organizational culture
After the initial goal setting meeting, the coaching begins. Typically, coach and client meet more frequently in the beginning to utilize the momentum of discovery to develop options to test outside the coaching sessions. These initial meetings might occur every 1-2 weeks, on average. As the coaching progresses, the frequency might stretch to every 4-6 weeks to allow the participant time to determine what is working and what needs they have to tweak the options they are developing.
On average, coaching assignments last approximately 6 months, although I have seen coaching assignments as brief as 3 months and as long as 1 year or more. It ultimately is up to the client and what they feel they need to realize the change they want to make.
I believe successful coaching is a true partnership, with the coach and client working together to realize the change they are seeking. The questions I ask are designed to help clients consider their current situation, what they want to change, and what options they have for realizing that change. The great news is that everyone has the answers inside of them, but sometimes they need a trusted coach to help discover what the answers are that are right for them.
Coaching is a powerful tool that can truly change people’s lives. There are so many exciting topics to consider in the world of coaching, and I look forward to sharing my thoughts and hearing yours in the weeks and months ahead.
Until then, remember the power truly lies in you.