Who are you? Mr. or Mrs. Coach?
and why are you qualified to coach me?
When you’re coaching someone, there are two critical things to consider before you even get started.
- to know who you are yourself
- to understand who you have in front of you.
This week, we focus on self-awareness. In the next we focus on understanding your coachee.
Understanding yourself is not so easy. I mean, I’m talking about really understanding yourself. It’s oh so easy to look at others. We see it happening around us all the time. We have opinions about others, we judge and critique them. It’s almost like a national hobby in many places. But for most of us, it’s not obvious to look in the mirror, and really try to see how others see us. Who are we really? What drives us? What gives us energy? What drains our energy? How do we behave? How do we come across to others?
You can only be effective as a coach if you have done your own amount of soul searching in understanding yourself.
This is something I see as a major risk with all the unregulated coaching. It’s an unprotected craft. Anyone can call themselves a coach these days. So, many do! But if you have only done some superficial soul searching, working without a toolbox, how can you be effective as a coach? You cannot.
So, if you’re interested in getting into coaching, start with your very own personal journey. Start to participate in coaching yourself. I still meet people that are hardly able to ask for help but think they should only give help. Especially, and here we go again, with many middle aged, white men.
To be effective as a coach, you should be able to give and to receive. Not only give. Therefore, start to seek active feedback from others. Prioritize and participate in programs to develop yourself. Lose the ego. Don’t only read self-help books, watch YouTube, and then proclaim you’re a coach based only on your track record. Make peace with yourself, including your mistakes and your accomplishments. It’s not about you, but about your clients.
In coaching we don’t tell people literally what they have do to. We assume that the answers are already in the person. However, it’s an illusion to think that your clients are not looking at you. They are often looking for some inspiration too. If you role-model some of the things on which they want to make progress, this continues to be very powerful.
What actions, sacrifices, and real investments in time and money did you make?