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What Type of Coach is Right For You?

Everyone has a coach right now! Or at least it can feel that way from looking at LinkedIn and lots of other social media platforms. From a career point of view there are career coaches, performance coaches, life coaches, motivational coaches and executive coaches. I’m sure if you look for long enough there will be a whole host of other areas that people offer coaching services in.

As someone who is a certified and accredited coach I would class myself (if I am pushed too!) as an executive coach. Realistically, I cover a lot of the above areas with my clients i.e. performance, motivation, career, life etc. As someone who provides coaching services there are two main things that I see as important. One, that there is "chemistry" match between myself and the potential client. If we are to work together effectively we must feel comfortable being in each other's company. By this I mean that the client believes they will be comfortable enough to be honest, with me and themselves, and that they believe I will be able to support them with their goal. Two, that my potential client knows I am a certified and accredited coach by the EMCC (European Mentoring and Coaching Council). This is not to say that coaches without formal training or accreditation with a governing body do not make suitable coaches but for me it allows me to point to a tested standard and code of ethics by which I practice my coaching.

When it comes to matching a coach and their Client you can base it on recommendations and/or a discovery call which usually lasts about 20/30 minutes. Us coaches have been trained to not take it personally when someone decides to not work with us!! We have also been trained to follow our own instincts and if the need arises to turn down work if/when we feel we are not the right match for our client.

Thankfully it doesn’t happen that often but it does happen and sometimes it’s a simple as a personality match between two people. You get a feeling from someone (something is right for you or it is not) and you are not sure if you can move past that. If you as the Client get this feeling on a discovery call with a potential coach, don’t ignore it. You are going to be paying for a service that will require you to be open and honest in your conversation. These conversations can be very personal – even when talking about work goals – so you need to feel that your coach is someone you can talk freely with. Yes, your Coach will hold you to account and give you honest feedback when appropriate to do so BUT you still need to have the right chemistry match with them to get the most out of the sessions.

In terms of the specific career experience of your coach – I tend to worry less about this both as the coach and as a client. I have coached many people who are in career fields I have never worked in, who have operated at much more senior levels than I have and who have a very different personality to me and they have been transformational sessions where real positive change has come about for the individual.

As a client having a coach who does not know my field of work is ok as the coaching process does not require them to have this knowledge. The coaching process requires my coach to engage and question with me, to explore different scenarios with me and sometimes it benefits me if they are not overly familiar with my professional world. In a coaching conversation there are no judgements made and really I am more interested in how many coaching hours they have acquired rather than how senior a role they have held.

Can a coach be considered who is not accredited or qualified?

Of course they can. Some people can have a natural coaching style in the way they engage with people. However, if someone is going to take on the responsibility of coaching another person without being trained to do so they need to have an awareness of the impact and influence that coaching can have on someone’s life both work and personal.

As a client you will want to be sure if you are paying money for a service that there is some standard and code of ethics that your coach will operate to. You will expect that for the money you pay, that you will have a Coach that is capable and competent in supporting you in achieving your goals.

So while it is of course possible to have a coach who is not accredited carry out a good job it is much more difficult for you as the client to determine if they are suitably qualified to do their job.

Coaching courses accredited by the EMCC or ICF (international Coaching Federation) ensure it’s graduates have met a required standard of learning and just as importantly a required standard of demonstrated coaching hours, a portion of which will have been assessed by a qualified and experienced coach from either the EMCC or ICF.

The above is not intended to discredit anyone working as a coach who is not accredited or formally qualified but more to point the client to ask questions, perhaps previous client referrals etc when considering if that coach is right for them.

Coaching is a powerful tool to introduce to your life whatever the goal in sight is. Take your time when selecting the right Coach for you – there are plenty of us out there so don’t be in a rush to choose!

The Kaiser Agency offer coaching services through 1:1 sessions and or group sessions. We have a number of accredited, certified and experienced coaches to choose from. If you would like to enquire about finding a coach please get in touch today.

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