Long before Anthony Robbins founded the field of Life Coaching close to 30 years ago, most people would probably associate the word “Coach” to sports. In the sports courts and fields we have football coaches, basketball coaches, table tennis coaches, badminton coaches and so on.
Over the years, “Coaching” has evolved to include areas outside sports. We now have coaches in almost any area including life, career, business, London bus hire communication, performance, health, weight management, relationship, personal empowerment, motivation, and even sex.
Coaches are known to be a trained and experienced expert in their area of specialization. They probably have the relevant knowledge, and have walked the path that you want to take. They could also be expert in an area that is applicable across fields. For example a peak performance coach could coach managers, athletes and students to tap into their mental powers to enhance their performance in their respective field.
Why do people hire coaches? Because coaches can help to shorten your learning curve, and facilitate greater clarity and awareness. That’s why people are willing to pay premium rates for coaches because they can save time, effort and money that would otherwise be lost in trials and errors. Others seek coaches for relief of their emotional baggages that are weighing them down and causing problems in their lives.
Whether you are looking at hiring a coach for your life, career, business, relationship, communication skills or any other areas, there are things you may like to look out for to ensure that you hire the right coach. Here are seven points to consider in hiring a coach:
Does the prospective coach have the necessary credentials? Is he or she qualified or certified by any professional bodies locally or overseas? Some more commonly known certifying bodies include the International Coach Federation (ICF) and American Board of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (ABNLP). Such organizations have stringent criteria for certification, and their members usually have to clock certain number of learning hours and pass examinations.
You may also want to consider if the prospective coach has the valuable experience that you could tap onto. If you were running a restaurant business, you would want to hire a coach with vast experience and a good track record in the food & beverage industry. In addition, does the prospective coach have experience in coaching individuals or organizations with backgrounds similar to yours? Like any other profession, experience counts.
Some coaches may use more structured methodologies in coaching, while others may coach from experience. Methodologies could range from motivational interview to NLP, results-based coaching, hypnotherapy, personality profiling, and other psychological interventions. Ensure that you are comfortable with the methodologies that will be used, and state upfront what you are not comfortable with. You, as the client always make the last call.
Coaching may take between 1 hour to 3 hours per session, and a coaching relationship could last from 1 session to many sessions over months. It depends on the client’s objectives and the nature of coaching carried out. As such, it is important to be clear about what you would be paying. Coaching fees could range from $100 per hour to $1000 per hour as determined by the coach or the organization he represents. Ensure that the fees are within your means. You wouldn’t want to clear one life issue with coaching and get into a financial predicament.
Other than face-to-face coaching, some coaches offer phone coaching, SMS coaching and email coaching. These could also be the additional supports that he provides to you during the period of the coaching relationship. Check with the prospective coach if his coaching services and fees include reasonable email and SMS correspondence, phone calls etc. In addition, be clear about where the coaching will take place – at his office, your office, your home or at a public area. The last is usually the least preferred due to a lack of privacy.
Choose a coach who is professional and has your interests at heart. A coaching relationship is one that is professionally intimate and confidential. A coach takes a strong interest in his client’s progress, places his client’s interests at high priority, and yet respects the client’s choices. If you feel uncomfortable about anything anytime during a coaching session, voice your concerns and a professional coach will go with your decision and preference.
There is this special “heart” factor that makes one coach more suitable than another. It is not differentiated in terms of expertise or experience, and certainly not about reputation and costs. It is about the sense of unconscious rapport and connection between a coach and a client. Even the world’s number 1 coach cannot be a good coach to everyone. The psychological aspects of projection and transference could affect the results and outcomes of coaching. Choose one whom you feel there is comfortable affinity, rapport, and connection.