There are many times in life when a coach can be helpful. For example, you might consider hiring a coach when…
- You are in transition
- You are lacking clarity
- You have been working toward something but can’t seem to make progress
- You feel a lack of meaning of fulfillment in your life
- You want to take your life and business to the next level
… to name a few.
Working with a coach is an investment, and as such, you want to make sure you are investing in the right coach for you — one who can help you achieve the progress you want to see in your life.
Many coaches offer complimentary sessions to see if there is a good match between coach and potential client. You can also get a great idea of the coach and his/her work through her blog, social feed or programs. Other times, you might be referred to a coach by a friend.
In all of these situations, you’ll want to be prepared to ask your potential coach questions in order to find the best coach for you.
- What makes this coach an expert? There are coaching programs that will certify coaches according to standards by the International Coach Federation. Ask your coach, is he/she certified? What type of training does she/he have? What life changes are you trying to make, and does the coach have experience in helping people through similar life changes?
- What does the coach specialize in? There are business coaches, life coaches, fitness coaches, mindset coaches. There is a coach for about every person in every life stage. You may know which type of coach you are seeking out if you have very specific goals (i.e., to get in better shape, to live a healthier lifestyle, to jump start your business), or you may want to work with a life coach who can focus on the holistic picture of your life and what you want.
- What kind of support do you want from a coach? Do you want an accountability partner? Someone to brainstorm with? Do you want to work with someone who is more inspirational and big-picture focused, or do you need someone who is more tactical and planning-focused? Being clear about what type of guidance you may need can ensure you find the right partner.
- How does this coach work with clients? How does this coach choose to interact with clients? Is this a group or individual program or include elements of both? How many calls or meetings do you get each month? Do you get unlimited email access? (This can be extremely helpful when you have questions/concerns in between meeting times.) Do you get access to resources or a broader community?
- How do you like to be held accountable? A big part of coaching is setting goals and holding yourself accountable to them. Know yourself – Are you a self-starter who takes something and runs with it? Or do you need a little more motivation, along with regular check-ins to help you stay on track?
- How do your personalities “jive” with each other? You will likely know in your first conversation with a coach whether or not you feel a personal connection. It will also be helpful for you to know if you prefer to work an ass-kicker or cheerleader or supportive sounding board?
- How much time are you willing to invest? True change and working with a coach takes a commitment of time. Along with just the regular calls and check-ins, change is a process and requires considerable time, depending on what it is you want to achieve. Consider how much time and money you are willing to commit. Also consider: What is the cost of not taking action at this time?
- How does payment work? What is the investment required? Does this coach offer any type of payment plans? What are the payment terms?
- Do you need to involve anyone else in the decision-making process? Do you need to talk to your spouse or partner to get the person on board with you for emotional or financial support? Is this something that will impact your career and that you feel like discussing with your manager? Hiring a coach is a personal decision but you may want to think about the impact to your daily and overall life. If you will need a few more hours to yourself during the week or month to work on your coaching, you may want to discuss with your family.
- What do you want your end result to be? What is it that you want to achieve by the end of your coaching program? Are you looking for more clarity, a concrete plan, a career change, to feel more confident, to set up your business? Coaches can help with all of these things (and more) but it helps to know up front what you’re looking to achieve and communicate that to your potential coach.
Making a decision to hire a coach to make big changes in your life can be scary on many levels. It’s not only a commitment in terms of time and money, but a commitment to making lasting change. That being said, after you have your questions answered, rely on your gut feeling to decide if working with this specific coach feels right for you at this time in your life.
If you want to learn more, read about the benefits of coaching.
If you are ready to take the next step, sign up for your complimentary consultation.