In a previous blog post, we examined why being coachable is essential to success. This statement rings true whether you’re being coached professionally, academically, athletically, or in another area. Now that we understand why being coachable is essential to accomplishing your goals, let’s explore how to find a coach!
Why Do I Need a Coach?
A good coach can jumpstart your process and help you improve more quickly by telling you what to look for. You may be incredibly prepared and have experience in a specific area, but if someone has even more experience, why not learn from them so you don’t make the same errors they did along the way?
One often overlooked benefit of working with a coach is they will hold you accountable. You can have the best intentions – be dedicated, passionate, and want to push yourself – but sometimes, it’s hard when things get really tough. It’s easy to go at your own pace or play mind games with yourself. A good coach will be there to push you further than you push yourself and won’t allow you to slack or go at your own pace.
What Are the Attributes of a Great Coach?
Great coaches guide you to help you reach your goals – they don’t “boss” you or give you orders. While they provide excellent guidance, advice, and feedback, they allow you to uncover what you need to do and do the work yourself.
Here are more qualities that good coaches usually have:
- They are driven and have an appetite for success.
- They have expertise in the field in which you need help.
- They are non-judgmental and care about their clients.
- They are good listeners and don’t have a “know-it-all” attitude.
- They understand the power of positive thinking.
- They are transparent and authentic with their clients.
- They are observant, often picking up on small details that may hinder a client from achieving success.
- They make themselves available to their clients.
- They have a history of maintaining professional coach-coachee relationships.
- They have good references and testimonials.
How Can I Find the Right Coach For Me?
There are a lot of factors to consider when looking for a coach because not only are there good and bad coaches out there, but there are also good coaches that are bad for you. If you’d like more clarity on how to find a coach, start by following these steps:
- Narrow Your Focus
What exactly do you want help or guidance with? If you’re looking for a business coach, what kind? Do you want an executive coach or a sales coach? If you’re looking to hire a trainer, what are your physical goals? There are coaches out there for every need! Get as specific as possible because that will help you refine your search.
- Start With Your Network
If you’re looking for a professional coach, ask your employer and co-workers to see what resources they have at their disposal. Seek out a colleague or a successful professional and ask them for advice.
- Do Your Homework
Before you work with anyone, especially before hiring a coach, research and learn their credentials. Talk to people about their work, then conduct an interview. You need to be on the same wavelength as the person you plan to work with. That means you want to share the same values and have the same basic understanding of your goals. Interviewing more than one coach is encouraged, especially if you’re planning on hiring a professional coach for the very first time.
- Don’t Mistake a Coach For a Therapist
It’s a very trendy thing to be a life coach today, and I’ve watched so many people make the mistake of turning to these so-called life coaches to serve the role that a therapist should serve. For me, there is a very clear distinction between a coach and a therapist; the place where I draw the line is emotion. If you need help working through emotional issues, that’s the job of a therapist and not a coach.
- Know You Can Switch Coaches at Any Time
Consider this a fluid process of give and take, formal and informal, that will go on indefinitely. Don’t assume you’ve suddenly made a long-term commitment just because you begin working with a coach. You can change things up when necessary. I even think it’s a good idea to change up your coaches because staying in one lane with one perspective can cause you to get too comfortable. Keep looking for different ways to challenge yourself, which often involves changing your influences.
What If I Can’t Hire a Coach?
If you can’t hire a coach, take stock of people in your life to see who might want to be your accountability partner and help push you to achieve your goals. This person could be a dear friend or co-worker you know is on a similar path and wants the same things. If so, reach out to them and see if you can come up with a routine or a plan to help each other out.
You also have a world of information right at your fingertips. If you are low on cash and need help understanding where to start, look for a book. Almost every expert in every field has written a book.
Lastly, consider gaining insight into your field by listening to podcasts or visiting online forums or YouTube. Between forums, books, podcasts, and YouTube, we have more valuable information at our fingertips than ever before, and much of it is free!
I hope you’ve enjoyed my “How to Find a Coach” blog post! If you need help with mental toughness and overcoming adversity, I invite you to check out my book, Thriving in the Storm: Nine Principles to Help You Overcome Any Adversity.
Don’t forget to stop by my free resources section, which includes workbooks, a video library, and additional articles!