What Is Coaching?
Coaching is a professional service to help you make important changes in your life. Coaching forwards action and deepens learning – leading clients to more fulfillment, balance and effective living.
What Is Not Considered Coaching?
Unlike therapy, coaching doesn’t see you as “broken”, needing to fix psychological issues. Rather than delve into the deepest recesses of a person’s past, a coach springboards off your present circumstances and accompanies you in crafting the future you envision. Whatever family-of-origin issues you’ve encountered need not prevent that process. Of course, if the coach senses therapeutic issues beyond their realm of expertise, they ethically owe it to clients to re-direct them appropriately.
What Is the Basic Philosophy of Coaching?
The Coaches Training Institute – a renowned coaching school based in California – adopts as their core tenet: The client is naturally creative, resourceful and whole. Clients possess all answers within or can find them. The coach does not know the “magical” answer to what’s right by you. They do have questions, listening and feedback to help you uncover your own direction. You hold final responsibility for your life. This means no spoon-feeding. If that’s what you’re looking for, Carol-Ann is not the right professional for you.
What Is the Coach’s Role?
The coach’s job is to help clients articulate their aspirations, clarify their goals and help them achieve outcomes. In seeing how ‘big’ you can be and constantly holding that image for you, your coach listens without judgment and allows you to express what you need to.
While the coach cares about the client, they’re not particularly concerned about the road you take to reach your dreams, the speed of travel or detours along the way (which are really just lessons) – as long as you continue to move toward the results you said you want. At the same time, your coach will tell you the truth – particularly when you sell yourself short.
The coach’s job is to make sure the client’s discussion agenda does not get lost. Within consulting settings, the expert offers specialization and often establishes the agenda. In Co-active coaching, the relationship is not necessarily about the coach’s content or ability to give solutions – but what the client needs.
What Is My Role as the Client?
Since coaches are not “nagging parents”, clients must be prepared to take personal ownership for moving forward with their dreams and goals. Remember, you are doing it for you, not others. It is a designed alliance. Clients play an important role in declaring how they want to be coached. The model is one of mutual responsibility between client and coach. Clients are in control of the relationship and ultimately the changes they want to enact.
What Topics/Issues Would I Work On?
Coaching addresses the whole person (i.e., career, money, health, friends and family, relationships, learning and growth, fun and recreation). In the end, are not all these aspects reflective of your life in some way? They’re like slices of a pie. If not in balance, then the whole mix is ‘off’. As such, virtually any point of entry is fitting. You get to say!
How Confidential Is My Information?
The subject matter of coaching is no less than the details of the client’s life. If clients are to risk making significant change, they must be able to speak freely. Such disclosure is crucial because it leads to the heart of personal discovery and learning. At first, this can be intimidating. The coach’s job is to make the “space” exceptionally safe for exploration by explicitly addressing this concern upfront and by creating an ongoing pattern of encouragement. Carol-Ann prides herself on the utmost confidentiality and integrity of all her coaching relationships.
How Do I Benefit From Hiring a Coach?
You take more focused action immediately. You stop putting up with what’s dragging you down and break free of self-limiting conversations. You set better goals than you might have without a coach. With its attention on you, coaching provides extraordinary levels of encouragement.
For those of you wondering why you “need” to pay someone to accomplish all this, Carol-Ann would simply ask, how has it worked for you so far to go it alone? If you could do it yourself, you would have long ago done so!
Everyone needs a coach. Carol-Ann has one (despite her unyielding commitment to do her work). So “should” you! Yes, you may “get there” on your own. But you won’t do so as fast or as well as you might have with a guiding champion.
How Do the Logistics of Coaching Work?
Carol-Ann’s usual client arrangement is to hold between one and four telephone sessions per month at durations between 30 and 60 minutes per session. It all depends on the frequency and length of time by which a given individual chooses to work. Generally, more frequent contact results in faster progress. You can imagine if you coach once a month for 30 minutes, movement will be slower than if you if you sign up for two 60-minute slots per month.
Whatever your situation, Carol-Ann asks clients to initially commit a minimum of three months to their coaching. This has a distinct purpose. For, the moment you decide to take a stand for your ideal life, a nasty inner voice called the Gremlin will arise to stop you dead in your tracks. This part of your personality does not want to see you soar. Three months provides the runway to coach past the darkness and make strides into your preferred future.
The client calls the coach. In some exceptional cases, Carol-Ann will do in-person coaching, especially at the beginning. While some at first doubt coaching can be successfully accomplished by phone, most eventually decide this arrangement is both efficient and effective.
How Do I Get Started?
If you are referred to Carol-Ann (the number one way clients come to her), she will call you to explore your interest and to determine if you are a suitable candidate for her coaching.
If she does not think there will be a “fit” with her brand of service, she will refer you to a colleague or make suggestions to open your coach-ability.
If you met Carol-Ann at a conference, workshop or networking event, she will follow-up by offering you a complimentary 30-minute session in order to give you an experience of being coached on an issue of your choice.
When you decide to become a client, the nature of your specific arrangement will be negotiated in a collaborative way – including the date and time of your first session!
“Powerful coaching is not about being a powerful coach; it is about the power the client experiences.”