To coach or not to coach

What motivates you?

To coach or not to coach

There comes a time when you need to look outside of your circle of friends, colleagues and fellow business contacts, for help with moving your ideas, your business, your personal life or even something like your abundance forward! The question you will be faced with is – “do I hire a coach or not?”

As an activity, coaching is the one thing that helps you grow in areas where you are stuck, where you have “hit the wall” and find yourself unable to look past what your current situation allows you to visualise or think about. Remember that not having a coach does not mean the end of the world. But what it does mean is that you don’t have someone who can see both the positive and the negative things that are surrounding you at that point in time. It mean’s that everything you do is based on your own perception of how things should work. And that is not always the best way for you to grow and move forward!

Coaching really depends on 2 main factors:

  • The first is the coach that you select
  • The second is how much work, effort and time you put into the activity!

But how do you select a coach?

Here are my thoughts on the best way for you to select the right coach to help you move forward in an area of your life that you want to reach new heights and experience better performance!

If you are looking to progress in something like a specific sport, then it would make sense to hire someone who has experience in that field right? So in general it would make no sense to hire an athletics coach if you are looking to improve your tennis. If you were looking to improve your sales and marketing of your business would you hire a sports coach? There might be times when hiring a sports coach has a direct benefit on your daily activities, because it has an impact on your fitness level which then has an impact on your focus and concentration abilities – but you should always hire the coach that is going to help you get to somewhere you are struggling to get to on your own.

Any coach should have a combination of three elements :

  • Knowledge
  • Skill
  • Experience

If you want someone to help you within relationships for example, then you need someone who has experience in that field. But more than experience, is their knowledge and their ability (also called skill) to bring you fresh information and ideas on how to challenge your current status. And then of course you need to be able connect and communicate with the coach too! If your coach is arrogant and too demanding and this is something you don’t know how to manage or handle then obviously it won’t be a good match!

Finally you need to consider this question :

“How much do you really want to change and improve ?”

If you think you know it all, then no coach in the world is going to be able to help you, because no matter what they say to you, you will never believe them and you will always revert back to what you think is best. Even if your ideas are wrong. So being able to listen to your coach, being responsible for completing the activities / tasks and goals that you have set yourself or have been set by your coach – that is super important. If you really want something you will put in the effort. If you don’t, you will find excuses to delay, or not do something – and then what kind of results will you really achieve ?

I had a coach at high school (secondary school) who was excellent with athletics! So I decided to take up discus throwing and he showed me some basics. But to be honest he did not have the experience or technique to help me move forward. The one thing we lacked was a proper physical training program for the back, the core and the legs. Normal training was not getting the results. So I went to a weekend training program with a specialist in another town and my results improved dramatically. But I won’t knock the coach and call him a bad coach. Two years later when I wanted to try something different I asked him to teach me the skills required of the long jumper! And wow. He got me from jumping 3.5 meters to around 5.5m with some excellent technique training and other exercises.

So when you select a coach it needs to be focused on a specific direction. Most coaches have their unique skills – so for example I would never coach anyone on cross country skiing! I have never even put a set of skis on my feet so how would I be able to be good at that. But when it comes to working with the subconscious and finding deeply hidden reasons for someone holding onto some trauma, then of course I can coach them through the process. I might be able to work on the psychology of the cross country skier, but there would be no way I could teach him how to improve his ski technique.

Once you have considered all of these points – the target of the coaching package is something you will need to discuss with your coach. What exactly is it that you will receive from the coaching?

I remember a seminar in London that I attended with another business colleague. The topic of the seminar was about public speaking, and although there were some bits and pieces of good information, I clearly remember the marketing pitch and sales push which occurred at the end of the seminar. The one thing that really caught my attention was the use of pressure selling to get a number of people to purchase an expensive retreat package – which would create better speakers out of everyone who attended. “Only a limited number of places”, “This price only applies today if you pay right now”.

I was interested to see how far they would take this so I indicated my interest. They told us they needed to work through the applications, and they preyed on the inherent fear of every person at the event – “I don’t want to be rejected”, and “I am good enough for this”. I got the answer to say I was selected, and went up to speak to their “selection team”.

Now to sit in front of someone and be pressured into providing credit card details, to have a sale made, to buy something that you are really not 100% sure you want, thats one thing. But when you have some experience in the selling techniques used, having seen it implemented by other organisations, this makes a difference. So I created an excuse and told them that I would need to check with my wife as she controls the bank balance. They were not happy. But my intuition told me this was a sales process with no real value behind it.

In the end my colleague forked out GP 10’000 (Pounds Sterling) and went on to attend the retreat. To say that my colleague was let down with the end results was an understatement. And my intuition – well I was spot on.

So what do you actually stand to gain from any deal that you sign? If you know, if the coach can provide you with an idea of what you will achieve, if he or she agrees with you that your results will be based on the effort you put into it and not necessarily the amount of money that will be spent. If there is a formulae / algorithm / tips and techniques  that can be shared share with you that are going to give you that result you want to achieve, then ok … you pay the coach what you think they are worth … not what they say is a bargain deal or a limited one time special offer!

So what about me, my methods and programs?

I coach people and I run various options for them:

  • There is the one to one coaching program, normally 3 months where I communicate and work with the person for at least 1 hour each week.
  • Then there is the group coaching program where a small group of people will get together online and they will share their challenges and progress made, and I will give the constructive thoughts and options to look at, which the whole group will listen to and hear.
  • And then there is the offline and online training programs I run.

Each of these are designed with a specific end result in mind. The personal coaching will only focus on the individual. The group coaching will give short amounts of specific feedback and then a whole lot of group ideas and comments that might or might not work. And lastly the training programs is where I teach specific skills and concepts to a group of people.

But before you can get to that – do you really know what areas of your life you want to work on?

If my schedule is free I would be happy to talk to you for a once off free 45 minute consultation about what it is you need to work on in your life – its a starting point that I offer and has some valuable insights.

But the big question for me, and for you :

“To coach, or not to coach?” – are you ready for what lies ahead?