How Will a Career Coach Help Me Land My Dream Role (And do I need one?)
August 20, 2019
If only I knew then, what I know now.
By “then,” I mean back when I was stuck in an unfulfilling corporate communications job, feeling like a square peg in a round hole. I knew something was off…. But I couldn’t put my finger on exactly what “it” was. Worse, I had no idea which career path would truly make me happy.
Back then… I didn’t even know what a Career Coach was.
Because if I did…. That would have been the FIRST path I would have taken in trying to identify and transition into my dream career.
Instead, I took the much slower, painful & lonely march… (i.e. buying every book from Amazon on how to find your passion, taking every assessment, and attempting to analyze the findings myself.)
Lo and behold, the thing I didn’t know I needed, would end up being the very thing I became.
By analyzing clues about myself & my history… I came to realize helping people find & land THEIR dream careers was exactly what I loved doing most! (I had been wearing the ruby red slippers all along! I just needed to click them!)
WHAT IS A CAREER COACH?
OK, before we get into examining whether or not a Career Coach is right for YOU, first let’s talk about what a coach IS.
The best thing about coaching is that it EMPOWERS you.
A coach does not have a “magic bullet” or “the answer.” As your Career Coach, I’m not going to tell you what YOUR dream career is.
But a coach IS trained to expertly ask the right questions and connect the dots in order to pull the answer out of you.
Coaching is a collaborative relationship between a coach and a client designed to grow you to your full potential.
Just as athletes wouldn’t consider training without the added insight, objective perspective, and support of an athletic coach, many of today’s most successful leaders, executives, entrepreneurs, and corporate professionals depend upon the skills of a coach to move their lives, careers, and businesses to the next level.
If there is a gap between where you are now in your career and where you want to be, there is room for a Career Coach. Not only will your coach help you close the gap, your coach will help you break through your assumptions, interpretations, and limiting beliefs, challenging you to think bigger.
Will hold you accountable, using a strengths-focus to unlock your potential.
Is results-oriented, challenging you to achieve outer goals while also undergoing internal transformation.
Will help you to create strategies & action plans that ask you to accomplish more than you could do on your own.
Will provide tools, encouragement, and guidance, allowing you to produce more results than before.
Even more specifically, a Career Coach will…..
Ask you questions designed to evoke insight….. to get to the heart of your career purpose & passion.
Provide career assessments, values assessments, motivational assessments, personality assessments, job skill assessments, etc & then debrief you on the results as they relate to your dream career.
Be your guide, provide resources, & lead you through career change, exploring career options, industries and opportunities.
Help you communicate your value / elevator pitch / unique value proposition to potential employers.
Coach you on networking (online & in person), getting your foot in the door, re-branding your LinkedIn, re-branding your resume, interviewing, & negotiating.
Provide career search strategy development and an action plan implementation.
Disclaimer: Every Career Coach is different & has a specific focus – so do your homework!
WHY DOES COACHING WORK?
Lifecoaching.com shares a staggering statistic from an article in Public Management about a study where training alone was compared to coaching combined with training. The study showed that training alone increased productivity by 22.4% while training combined with weekly coaching increased productivity by 88%.
The website goes on to share the 4 reasons behind WHY this is:
Accountability. Regularly scheduled calls or meetings prompt clients to get more done than they would if left to their own devices. Clients take bigger actions, set bigger goals, and think bigger when they work with a professional coach.
Expertise. The trained coach knows how to help you discover the right goals for you and structure your personal and professional life to achieve greater productivity with less effort. You’ll achieve more in less time with the input of an ICF certified coach on your side.
Delivery. A well-trained coach knows how to use the right questions so that you are internally motivated. It doesn’t take browbeating or nagging when you are working with a skilled coach. Coaching typically works best with a weekly call so clients have time to integrate new ways of thinking and take action each week towards their goals. The work usually happens between the sessions. The experience can be challenging and is almost always uplifting.
Speed. Most people find that things start to happen very quickly after hiring a life coach.
BUT….DO I NEED A CAREER COACH?
Now that you understand what a Career Coach does and why it’s effective, you may already have the answer to this question.
But here’s the deal. No one NEEDS a Career Coach. But you most definitely will WANT one.
Even COACHES have coaches. (I’ve had many!)
It’s critical to be able to step out of your own “bubble” and have an objective, trained third-party hold a mirror up to you. (No… not a friend or family member who will mean well but have their own agenda.)
A coach’s ONLY agenda is to help you achieve YOUR goal.
HOW TO TELL IF YOU ARE READY FOR A CAREER COACH:
Pop quiz, hot shot!
Here are some questions I explore when interviewing prospective clients who want to work with me.
Do you want results faster and more effective than you would have on your own?
Are you open to new ideas?
Are you willing to be challenged in order to move you out of your comfort zone (which isn’t currently getting you desired results?)
On a scale of 1-10, with 1 being not at all motivated to 10 being completely motivated… are you at an 8 or higher in terms of how motivated are you to identify and transition into your dream role?
Are you seeking clarity on what your dream career or “second career act” should be?
Are you not getting the results you want (no interviews, no call backs, no job offers) but you aren’t sure why? (You need someone to diagnose the problem.)
Do you need help overcoming fears, limiting beliefs, assumptions, as it relates to achieving your dream career?
Do you keep repeating the same mistakes – taking a job because it sounds good but then you end up miserable or unfulfilled?
If you answered “Yes” to over half of these questions, you my friend, may be ready to work with a Career Coach.
BUT I’M NOT READY TO LEAVE MY JOB RIGHT NOW…
This is something I want to emphasize. Just because you are working with a Career Coach does NOT mean you are marching in to work tomorrow and handing in your resignation!
I say this because some people let the fear of career change stop them from working with a coach.
Don’t sabotauge yourself in that way.
Working with a Career Coach is the most strategic thing you can do.
Better to identify your dream role and build out a smart plan to get you there now… than to eventually burn out, get laid off, fired, or quit your job with out a plan of action on how to move foward.
This is you being PROACTIVE instead of REACTIVE.
Your fears around moving into a new career are 100% normal and a coach will guide you on how to “feel the fear and do it anyway.”
OK… I THINK I NEED A CAREER COACH… NOW WHAT?
LinkedIn is the place to be to find a Career Coach. Take note: many coaches (most) work remotely so don’t limit your search!
Follow their work, blogs, and social media posts. Do detective work to see if their material resonates with you in some way. This is a clue to how they work.
Hop on a complimentary coaching call (offered by most coaches.) The really good coaches will ask you to apply for a complimentary coaching session to ensure you are a good fit. You have nothing to lose here & are likely to gain extreme value out of the coaching call (even if you decide not to move forward with coaching.)
Take inventory of how you FELT during the call. Did the two of you have synergy? This will be a partnership so you have to feel comfortable and inspired.
Read their testimonials. You can even ask to speak with a former client.
Check out where they were certified. A coach certified by an ICF-accredited school has gone through the “golden standard” of coaching.
Review their “package”. Every Career Coach has developed a different process to help you get from point A to point B. For example, here is my Career Bliss Coaching Package. Find a package that will help you achieve your specific goal.
HAVE I LIT A FIRE UNDERNEATH YOU YET?
Alright, you’ve made it this far!
Knowledge is power, but knowledge without action is futile.
Take the first step in the discovery process to uncover what your dream career truly is.
CLICK HERE to download your Free Surefire Guide to Finding Your Passion.
Let’s do this.
Betty Kempa, CPC, ELI-MP, is an executive career coach helping mid to senior-level corporate women transition out of unfulfilling jobs and into their dream careers.