The Role of A Career Coach

//The Role of A Career Coach

What’s the role of a career coach?

Simply put, the role of a career coach is to help you work out what you’d like to do and how to get there. But there’s so much more to it than that.

First, we ought to begin with a disclaimer…

The idea that ‘Career coaches are for people who are desperate and can’t do it themselves’ is 100% false. The reality is the opposite.

Coaches are for those people who are serious about their success. They’re for those people who don’t want to waste precious time. People who want to get on the right track as soon as possible.

Could Roger Federer have won 20 grand slams without having a coach? It’s unlikely…

Why work with a professional if I can get a job on my own?

The world of work is changing at a dizzying speed; many of the companies transforming the world today didn’t even exist five or ten years ago.

According to the Institute for the Future, more than 85% of the jobs in 2030 are yet to be created. So developing your self-knowledge and knowing your strengths, skills and interests is critical to make sure you’re heading in the right direction.

Shouldn’t we have figured out our career path during School or Uni?

Well…not really.

Much careers advice in secondary and tertiary education is lamentable – often led by individuals who, although well-intentioned, are utterly removed from today’s professional world. And with the workplace un-recognisable from a generation ago, well-meaning advice from parents and their friends can also be limited in its usefulness.

Fast forward a few years and for those already in work there comes pressure from family and peers not to change – the status quo can seem much more appealing.

Not to mention that often your priorities and wants change as you grow up. Many things which sounded fun as a younger person we now realise don’t meet our needs. Being able to reassess your situation with someone else means you’re never stuck working towards something that really doesn’t interest you any more.

Work is pretty important…

Indeed, it takes up the majority of one’s waking day, week and life. Approximately 3,515 days out of an average life span of 30,000 days are spent at work so it’s really important to do what you love and love what you do.

To put this in context, by the age of eighteen 6,574 days have gone, by the time you’ve hit your 30th birthday, 10,950 days have gone and at 50 years old, 18,262 days have passed. You don’t want to waste one minute of your one precious life doing stuff that’s doesn’t take you closer to where you want to be.

Take three minutes to watch:

Working with a career coach helps you work out what’s important to you; what sort of a person you are, which are the most suitable career paths where your skills, personality and experience will be most valued and where you will thrive.

What does coaching actually look like?

Coaching can range from a single coaching session to a series of more regular coaching to meet the client’s specific objectives. A session is typically between one and two hours but the length depends on the nature and range of the discussion.

Some career coaches offer a mentoring approach – providing practical guidance on how to prepare your personal brand (CV, elevator pitch and social media profiles), where to look and how best to apply for roles that suit you. They may even be able to help you with networks or job shadowing opportunities through their contacts. Depending on the coach, sessions can be face to face or online, often supported with email and text support with homework often given.

The role of a career coach

Skill assessments & Reports

Some coaching organisations also offer skills assessments and independent reports which can be useful in helping identify strengths, and personalities and potential career paths. A qualified and experienced career coach will take you through the nuances of your report. Several of the most popular personality assessments are freely available online like 16PF and MBTI. These can be helpful in getting clarity on what sort of person you are which is useful in understanding what sort of organisation you’d be suited to. 

These reports can be really useful; not just for yourself, but for employers also. A study from the University of South Carolina concluded one of the most common reasons that hires don’t work out is down to behavioural compatibility – an issue easily sorted out with the help of pre-employment reports. Having completed one of these reports will put you on a strong footing in the employment process.

They help you to stand out

You’re a wonderful, unique person. However, it can be difficult to get your personal qualities across on a CV or even at an interview.

As far as employers are concerned there are many others like you; with your academic background or formal training. You need to stand out. A coach will help you get to the bottom of what makes you the worthwhile candidate and help you put that on show for the world of employers to see.

If you’re still not sure whether working with a coach is right for you, try working through our ‘Complete Career Change Workbook’. It will not only help you clarify the next steps along your own career but it will also give you a good idea of the kinds of methods coaches use to help you reach success.

Remember,  working in a role/organization that does not suit your natural strengths and interests can be a pathway to disaster.

Alice:  “ Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
The Cheshire Cat: “That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.”
Alice:  “I don’t much care where –”
The Cheshire Cat:  “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”

– Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland.

Don’t be like Alice!  A career coach will help you work out what you’d like to do and where you’d like to go so that all your energies can focus on getting you to where you want to.  As Bill Gates said ‘Everyone needs a coach.’

Investing in a career coach is one of the best things you can do.

Why not have a  free call with one of our coaching team?