Surviving That Decision re: Hiring a Coach

Yes, today’s blog is about surviving that decision re: hiring a coach.  Things are out of sync, your business is stagnant, your love life is non-existant, something is wrong and you just cannot put your finger on it.  This happens to all of us and we all need help from time to time to get in sync, to be refreshed, to have love in our life and to be at peace.

Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time we called it “therapy”.  No one knew what coaching was outside sports.  Many times we just needed to sit down and talk to someone other than our best friend (who is always going to agree with us).  Back in the day our insurance companies even paid for our talk sessions.

That was then, this is now and coaching is the new talk session.  Believe me I have nothing against hiring a coach.  I know there are incredible coaches in this world.  Some people call them advisors – many people have them right up to every President of the United States if we think of it that way.  How many of us have financial advisors?  Many of us have a religious advisor, our priests, our ministers, our rabbis, and many more.

We have all had coaches in our life before the term became a buzz work for talk sessions and problem solving.

The ONLY thing that doesn’t sit well with me is the fact that anyone can call themselves a coach, hang a shingle, print some business cards and voila they are a coach.

I am sure that there are some people who are natural born coaches, but I do not think they are born every day.  If you have made the decision to coach with someone then there are some things to consider.

I took this list right off Vickie Champion’s website:

http://vickiechampion.com/coaching-consulting/about-coaching/

Vickie gives you both the pros and cons of situations and clearly explains what a good coach will do for you.  She has years of experience that make her a coach that is in high demand.  Her website truly spells out for you ALL the things you should be looking for in a coach as well as all the questions you should be asking.

If checking Vickie out doesn’t appeal to you then here are some steps you can take on your own to find a great coach.

  • Totally check them out.  Google their name.  Ask them to tell you what makes them a great coach.  Hey why not?  It’s your money you know.  You are hiring them- ask for that resume’.  Ask for references.  Again, why not?  They are going to work for you.  Check out the BBB and Ripoff Report, see if anyone has complained.  Google their name with the words “complaints about _________________”.  Ask where they “learned” to be a coach.  There are coaching programs, so ask.
  • If you feel that you are being pressured to hire someone take a breath and back off.  Never hire someone/anyone who pressures you.
  • Watch out for those lump sum up front fees.  In my work in social media I am on a lot of webinars and they always end with a “coaching package” priced at a ridiculously low amount.  Some are worth it, some are not.  Be careful.  If there is a contract involved be triple careful. Signing a confidentiality agreement is an absolute, signing an agreement to coach on a repetitive basis for a certain amount of time is not.  What if the coaching sessions are not working out?  Pay as you go is a much better way to do things.
  • Ask for testimonials and if they don’t look right to you they might not be so maybe you should look elsewhere.
  • Watch out for the upsells.  If you attend a meeting for example, and you are offered a “free 20 minute consult on coaching” you are going to be sold to, that’s how we all do business.  There is nothing wrong with this, just be aware that with the free comes the upsell.
  • Coaching is not therapy.  If you need therapy, you need to hire someone with a license to practice it.  They have the educational background to help you, in many cases, maybe most cases, a coach doesn’t have this background.
  • Trust your gut when you interview people, and yes I said “interview people”.  If you are looking for a coach you should be interviewing more than one.
  • You should also compare apples and apples so to speak into how much the coaching sessions cost.  The most expensive won’t always be the best, and likewise.
  • Here is one final HUGE piece of advice – do NOT hire someone you know personally as in friendship, to coach you or anyone you love.  It would be difficult to be honest on your part and when you are honest you may have feelings of regret.  You want a totally unbiased stranger in your corner.

There you go – I am pro-coaching.  I am about picking the right person to help you, someone you can trust.  Do your homework.  It’s your money, your life, you are the boss.  Remember that – you are the boss.

This paragraph was written by a coach I know well – she has been trained as a coach and her words really resonated with me today:

“Credentials and experience are vital. National standards for health and wellness coaching have been developed and are now being rolled out, with quite a high level of training required. Many coaching schools will be revising curriculums to meet these standards (nccwh.org) that have been developed over the last 5 years. The standards were published in May in the Global Advances in Health and Medicine Journal, a peer-reviewed journal. To the question you first posed, in coaching it is important that people understand the roles of the coach and the client in these relationships because coaching is relatively new in the public domain (though I’ve been teaching and coaching for Wellcoaches for nearly 12 years). Numerous organizations like the ICF, and the Institute of Coaching at Harvard are ensuring we have evidence based answers to be a professional in this relatively new profession.” ~ Pam S.

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