The decision to start working with a coach can be a tricky one. To get to this point you may have had to accept some uncomfortable truths about your life or your business. Once you’ve come this far, I think it’s important to spend time mulling over the next step in the process; which individual coach is right for you.
This is vital whether you’re looking for a coach to support you with your personal relationships, your career progression or your business. Everybody is different, and the coach your friend/colleague/neighbour loved won’t necessarily be right for you. You’ll be spending a lot of time with your chosen coach and discussing some personal things: so it makes sense to choose someone you can really connect with.
Many coaches will offer you a initial consultation or taster session. This is a great opportunity for you to experience what working with the coach will be like, and whether you have that all-important rapport.
If you’re currently going through this process, you might find my tips helpful:
Prepare some questions before you go
When you work with a coach, sessions typically involve your coach asking you a lot of questions. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t turn the tables during the initial session and ask a few of your own! This is an excellent time to get some answers about coaching in general as well as your coach’s specific methods. You might also want to talk to your coach about their background and experience. Finding some common ground might make you feel more confident about their ability to support you.
Be wary of the hard sell
Taster sessions allow coaches to do two key things: assess whether you’re ready for coaching and showcase their expertise. Both these things will help you to make a decision, but some coaches may focus too much on the second point and try to use the session as a hard sell. If you experience this, my advice is to be very wary. You deserve a coach that will put your needs first!
Be honest about how you feel about the coach
If you’re not 100% convinced that a coach is right for you after the first session, don’t feel pressured to schedule future appointments. It may seem easier in the short term to settle for someone you’re 75% positive about, but it could turn out to be an expensive mistake. Ask yourself:
- Do you feel completely at ease with the coach?
- Will you be able to trust this person with your worries and ambitions?
- Are you confident that the coach will inspire you to make changes?
- Will the coach be able to hold you accountable for accomplishing your goals?
The bottom line here is this: coaching is a hugely rewarding process, but it can also be long and challenging. To get the most from the process, you’ll want to make sure you’ve found the right person to lead you through it.