What Is Coaching?
The overall goal of coaching is to get the client from where they are at to where they want to go. The International Coach Federation defines coaching this way:
“ [Coaching is] partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential. Coaching honors the client as the expert in his/her life and work and believes that every client is creative, resourceful, and whole. Standing on this foundation, the coach’s responsibility is to:
- Discover, clarify, and align with what the client wants to achieve;
- Encourage client self-discovery;
- Elicit client-generated solutions and strategies; and
- Hold the client responsible and accountable.”
In today’s world, there are many ways to improve yourself and your skills: coaching, mentoring, counseling, therapy. Each has its place depending on your needs at the time.
Coaching is an opportunity to focus on your needs with someone whose purpose is to guide, support, challenge and hold you accountable. The Coach focuses on your wisdom, your knowledge and your judgment to aid you in making decisions and accomplishing goals. A Coach rarely gives advice, as we believe strongly that you have the answers within you; our job is to bring that out.
Mentoring is a wonderful opportunity to connect with someone senior to you in your field who can guide and support you through sharing their advice and experience. This person may provide some coaching in a sense, but the relationship is more Mentor to You than You to Mentor.
Counseling is when someone helps you with resources and advises you on how to make decisions. They may offer some advice based on experience. Their main role is to guide you through a decision-making process.
Therapy is an opportunity to look into your past and see the repercussions on your present. Therapy is key when you are dealing with serious trauma or working to overcome barriers presented by past experience. The biggest difference between coaching and therapy is that coaching keeps focused on the present to move into the future; therapy focuses on the past to deal with the present for a better future state.
So, Why Choose Coaching?
Take a look at the benefits:
- Move forward when you are stuck (in your career, on a project, with your team, in relationships)
- Identify your present-day barriers to success
- Hold yourself accountable
- Recognize your strengths and work them
- Plan and action it