Navigating Your Career

What Coaching Really Is

February 10, 2021 Melissa Lawrence Season 1 Episode 20
Navigating Your Career
What Coaching Really Is
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Navigating Your Career
What Coaching Really Is
Feb 10, 2021 Season 1 Episode 20
Melissa Lawrence

This is a fun episode - we are getting into the detail of what coaching really is.

If you've ever tried to Google coaching, you'll get a ton of information, some more reputable than others.

Listen in to here:
Why there are so many types of coaches
Coaching  standards and how to find a coach that is a good match
How my clients describe coaching to their friends and family
The benefits of coaching for your career and life
What actually happens during a coaching session

Learn more about the International Coaching Federation at https://coachingfederation.org/
Apply for coaching with Melissa at https://l4po6bavscc.typeform.com/to/lyDa4DPK

Show Notes Transcript

This is a fun episode - we are getting into the detail of what coaching really is.

If you've ever tried to Google coaching, you'll get a ton of information, some more reputable than others.

Listen in to here:
Why there are so many types of coaches
Coaching  standards and how to find a coach that is a good match
How my clients describe coaching to their friends and family
The benefits of coaching for your career and life
What actually happens during a coaching session

Learn more about the International Coaching Federation at https://coachingfederation.org/
Apply for coaching with Melissa at https://l4po6bavscc.typeform.com/to/lyDa4DPK

Navigating Your Career

Episode 20: What Coaching Really Is

 

Hello!  This is going to be a fun topic – we are going to get into the nitty gritty of what coaching actually is.  I talk about it.  I offer concepts, tools, and information but let’s be real, if you Google coaching, you’re going to get a TON of information.

 

So I thought it would be fun to talk about it candidly. What it is, what it isn’t…how I use it…the benefits of it and even what my clients tell their friends it is.

 

When I thought about this episode, I thought, I could talk all day long about what coaching is, but if you’re not a coach, it won’t be as impactful or insightful as if you heard it from a non-coach.  Someone who isn’t trained, has never coached before, just experienced it.

 

So we are going to talk about that too.

 

First let’s set some context.

 

Depending on your experience you may have different thoughts about coaches.  I always thought of coaches as elite – something for executives that were chosen for great things but had issues they needed to overcome to get there – so the company invested in getting them a coach.

 

Others may have only heard the term Life Coach on that old episode of Roseanne as a mockery and think the whole profession is a joke…I’m guessing if you’re listening to my podcast that isn’t you but let me tell you – I saw that and laughed and thought it was a joke too back then!

 

If you haven’t had that experience you may be wondering why there are so many coaches now and where they are coming from!

 

The coaching industry has had a massive boom world wide and has been reported as being the 2nd fastest growing sector in the world within the last 10 years.  It’s making coaching more accessible than ever, which is awesome.  It isn’t just for the C Suite anymore!

 

But it is worth noting there are ALL sorts of Coaches and there is really little to no regulation on who calls themselves a coach.  SO you will find people that call themselves: life coaches, health coaches, empowerment coach, career coach, executive coach, weight loss coach, mindset coach, the list goes on and on.

 

It isn’t like a doctor – where you have to achieve a certain level of credentials before you can use the title.  It is an unregulated industry so that means anyone can call themselves a coach.

 

So it is SUPER important to know that and consider what you want in a coach.

 

 

There is one governing body of professional coaches but there isn’t a requirement to be a part of it – that is the International Coach Federation or known as ICF.  I am an ICF Coach, my program was also accredited by ICF which means had to require certain ethics, standards and practices consistent with the ICF.

 

Personally, this is important to me, which is why I pursued this route when I went through certification.  I had taken other coaching programs and had done a lot of coaching in my corporate life, but without being part of an ICF program so I’m proud to say that is part of my journey.

 

ICF defines a coach as a professional who supports, empowers, and challenges individuals to help them realize their personal and professional goals. The coaching relationship is a partnership relying on a high level of trust and connection between coach and client. The coach helps the client clarify their agenda and supports them in creating and following through on a strategy to achieve their goals.

 

Coaching is about empowering people to come up with their own answers with questioning, exercises, and tools and during the process we overcome common obstacles and blocks using techniques that are legally correct to do without a counseling license.

A key difference between coaching and counseling is counseling is about healing deep emotional issues, often from the past, or diagnosing mental illness.  It also focuses on processing the past as opposed to taking action for the future.

 

Coaching is also different from consulting because consulting is telling you what to do.  You pay for my expertise and I give you information or suggestions rather than guiding you to develop your own answers.

 

So let’s talk about what my clients had to say.  I asked a few of them to tell me in their words, if a friend or family asked them, what they would say coaching is.

I combined their statements into one list.

Here is what they had to say:

·      Coaching helps you get rid of the fluff.

·      It helps you calm the brain.

·      You learn how to work toward the goals that will make you happy

·      It’s a lot of self-reflection and hard work to understand how you think and how you want to be

·      You could get steps online or from a book but if you can’t see your blind spots, how they apply to your thinking, and have the accountability it doesn’t work.

·      It’s a calming and deep self-reflection of the brain and yourself

·      Sometimes frustrating then you wake up one day and realize things are different. That you’re happier, that you’re thinking and doing things differently.

·      Someone who helps you get to know yourself and asks you questions that are hard and sometimes uncomfortable but it’s nice because it’s just questions, and it’s unbiased it’s helps me think and reflect and make choices I want to.  

·      Asking great questions

·      Sacred place to share thoughts positive and negative about anyone or anything so you can understand yourself and get over your own limitations and obstacles

·      A place that builds confidence with every session

 

So let’s go back to that ICF definition:

ICF defines a coach as a professional who supports, empowers, and challenges individuals to help them realize their personal and professional goals. The coaching relationship is a partnership relying on a high level of trust and connection between coach and client. The coach helps the client clarify their agenda and supports them in creating and following through on a strategy to achieve their goals.

 

So you can see how it is described professionally, or even if you’ve seen anything I’ve written, how I talk about it, and then how my clients talk about it.

 

It is all consistent – it’s helps you understand yourself, empowers you to make decisions aligned with your goals, overcome any limitations you have and is a trusting relationship that is confidential.

 

In my work as a coach I’m bound my ICF ethics and competencies.  Again, this is only true of ICF coaches.  The competencies are the areas I became an expert in to be certified.  I went through months of training and had to work with several practice and free clients to earn my certification. I learned about the professional standards, establishing trust, communicating, questioning, facilitating results, and so on.  I also learned a specific model and tools that I use in my sessions.

 

The code of ethics I abide by are around confidentiality, conflict of interest, advocacy of my clients, professionalism, and continuing education so that I am always improving on my coaching skills.

 

So that is a high level view of what coaching is and how it is defined – also that there are different standards in the profession.  It’s just like an profession, some are going to be better than others, and it’s important you have a good chemistry and fit with your coach so you can get the best results.

 

You might be wondering what the benefits are.  With my clients they go from stressed, overwhelmed, feeling stuck, having a difficult relationship with their boss, thinking they don’t have a future in their career, dreading going to work to feeling confident in themselves, knowing exactly what they want their next career move to be, and what they want long-term, overcome imposter syndrome, become powerful decision makers, are relaxed, find themselves with more time on their hands than ever, and overall happier and more emotionally healthy.

According to the Institute of Coaching – The benefits of coaching are massive including 80% finding increased self-confidence, 70% have improved work performance, improved relationships, and more effective communication skills.  Further 90% of those that invest in coaching recoup their investment and more!  So no matter how you look at it, coaching is effective.  If you have a qualified coach and a trusting relationship, you do your part and do the work to take the action, you are guaranteed to get the results you want.

 

It gives you a life you wouldn’t have without it. Imagine if you were to overcome all of the things that hold you back, and there are things you don’t know, ways of self-sabotage, ways of looking at the world that are distorted, it’s true for everyone and if you were able to get over all of your limitations and know what you really wanted, and have someone to help you along the way – you will not only have the career you want, you’ll have the life you want. 

 

Alright now let’s dig into what a session actually looks like.  It’s like the Wizard of Oz, we will see what is behind the curtain! Ha ha

 

Coaching sessions are just shy of an hour and they start with checking in, a brief greeting.  I always ask my clients to share their wins from the week.  Then we move into a topic for coaching.  The topic is chosen by the client and is either based on the goals we established in the beginning of our coaching package, or an ad-hoc topic the client brings to the session.  I always establish goals with the client for the period of time we are working together but the client is always open to bring a different topic to focus on.

 

So if for example we have goals on identifying the next career move and building confidence – but the client just had a really tough meeting with their boss and is stressed out – they may want to coach on that so they can get clarity, overcome their stress, and have a path forward to dealing with their boss.

 

Coaching changes the big things by changing the little every day things.

 

When you learn how your brain works, about the limitations or unresolved issues holding you back, and then how to overcome them, you’re learning and moving past these things by processing them.  I help you do that in coaching, breaking apart specific situations and coaching through them until you have the action you want to take, that will align with what you want.

 

It’s really an incredible experience.  Without it I wouldn’t have started my own business and grown it to the success it is today.

 

When I said I wouldn’t have my business without it – it’s true. I had a great job, all the skills and abilities.  But my brain wasn’t on board. It was keeping me safe.  My coach helped me realize what I wanted, when I wanted it, what was holding me back, and guided me to actually following through.

 

 

An analogy I use is let’s say you want to clean your kitchen cabinets.  If you’re familiar with Lean you’re going to 5S them.  So you want to provide some organization, sort through what you need and don’t, get them clean and shiny.

 

Sounds great right?

 

Now imagine you’re inside the kitchen cabinet and you’re like a mime trying to see outside and know where things go and how to organize them but you can’t see that good because you’re IN the cabinet!

 

Now apply that to your brain.

 

When you’re inside your own head you can’t see what’s real, what’s there to protect you, what isn’t useful, and how to achieve what you want in the most effective and efficient way because you’re using your brain to solve your problem with your brain J

 

A coach is like the person standing outside the kitchen that can guide you to where things should go so you can achieve the results you want and when you’re tired and just want to give up and don’t remember why you wanted what you wanted, the coach is there to remind you and help you keep going. It’s so much easier that way right?

 

So there you have it.

 

The nitty gritty of 10,000 foot view of coaching.  Is that an oxy moron? Nitty Gritty and 10k view? Haha.

 

I’ll add a link in the shownotes to the International Coaching Federation if you want to learn more about it. If you’re thinking, coaching sounds great – I will also include a link where you can apply for coaching with me.  We will get those kitchen cabinets organized in no time.