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What is Coaching? How Will Coaching Benefit Me or My Organization?

December 6, 2011

I receive a lot of calls from both corporate and individual clients who have questions about coaching? What is coaching? How does it work? What are the expected benefits? I, also, work with corporations to create a coaching culture. So many corporate leaders do not know how to coach or are too busy to coach their staff. Recently, I wrote a column featured in CU Magazine about creating a coaching culture at the organizational level. This article will be added to the ‘Media’ section of my web site coming soon!

But for those individuals interested in coaching, I have created a Q & A on coaching for you.

What is coaching?

Coaching is the relationship created between the coach and client for the purpose of helping clients further their lives in some way.

Throughout a coaching call, the coach will talk very little about his/her own life experiences. This session really is about you. The tools the coach uses will help you find the answers and solutions that are best for you. Only when I am asked mentoring types of questions do I voice my opinion in a specific direction. I believe everyone has a different path that is right for them. My job is not to tell people where to go, but to help them to get there.

What tools does Carey-Ann use in her coaching?

I use a variety of tools in my coaching that really depend on what the individual needs. I utilize powerful questions to dig deep into what is really going on. I also use balanced perspective exercises to help executives gain a look at the broader picture. And some people just need me to be a strategic sounding board. A lot of these details are decided upon by the client and myself during our discovery session when we map out our coaching relationship to ensure the client is  getting the most out of our time working together.

What is the difference between life coaching and executive coaching?

Generally, I am hired for life coaching when there are specific issues that come up in an individual’s life that are not related to work. This could be anything from struggling to get through a divorce, to wanting to find his/her life purpose.

Executive coaching is when I am working with leaders who have some work-related issues. I provide them with a strategic sounding board and I help them further refine their skills to prepare them for the next step (and the step beyond that) in their careers. With that being said, I deal with the holistic person and I believe we can not separate who we are at work from who we are as people. So if issues come up on the home front that are really bothering an executive or if something happened in the past that is still creating an obstacle for her in her life, we deal with it. The reality is if people are struggling in their lives outside of work, this will eventually begin to show up on the job.

What training does a coach need?

There is no regulated training for coaches anywhere. This means that anyone can say they are a coach. It is very important when talking to coaches that you ask them about their credentials and do your research on them before the hire. I would recommend a coach who has either completed training with the Coaches Training Institute or The International Coaches Federation.

How long do coaching relationships last?

Typically anywhere from two to four years. But, the only commitment I ask of my clients is to sign a six-month contract with me where I work with them on coaching calls generally twice a month. At the end of the six months, it is completely up to them if they wish to continue.

What are the benefits of coaching?

Where do I start here…I can help you get promoted. I can help you work on skills to be more successful in your job (i.e public speaking, self-confidence, effective delegating, and the list goes on and on). Since I deal with the ‘whole’ person when I coach, I can assure you that I will help you find ways to better manage your stress and get into better shape. But, I think the number one benefit my clients would experience is that working with a coach can really create happier people. Through the coaching process, you can uncover things about yourself that will likely create a few ‘aha’ types of moments, giving you better insight into blockages stopping you from living the beautiful life you were born to lead.

What differentiates Carey-Ann’s coaching from that of other coaches?

There are lots of good coaches out there and some coaches that are not so great. So I am not going to say I am the very best and you should choose me. What I will say is that I am really good at connecting with people. I have the gift of intuitively reading others and I can sense things going on with them which allows us to break through to the heart of the matter quickly.  I am very strategic in my approach, partly due to my corporate executive background and my MBA education. All of my corporate coaching sessions follow an action plan and often clients’ scorecards are used as a source of working toward tangible goals. But to me the number one thing I bring to my coaching is my enthusiasm to help you be the best person you can be in all areas of your life.

What would Carey-Ann, as a coach, expect of me as a client in the coaching relationship?

I expect dedication. I count on the people who sign up for coaching with me to be serious about living their best lives. I am not the type of coach that piles on lots of homework.  I know many of the executives I deal with have already enough pressure in their lives to do more. But I do expect you to put aside some time for reflection. I talk to every client in advance of taking them on to ensure there is a fit between the two of us. I do not take on every person who approaches me. I am looking for people who are driven to really be better – for themselves, for their families, for their companies and quite frankly, for the world.

If you have any additional questions about coaching, please email me at ceo@potentialunlimited.ca

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