What Can Coaching Do For You?

September 21, 2012 § Leave a comment

This Harbor Seal at the Oregon Coast Aquarium is a natural swimmer but she might benefit from coaching for her job search!

I learned to swim as a kid in a succession of hotel and friend’s pools during the summers of my childhood. I can pass the Boy Scouts swimming test but I am not going to break any speed records! My son has learned to swim the same way so I recently enrolled my son in a swim conditioning class at the local rec center. The goal was to make him a more confident and efficient swimmer. This is accomplished by having his swimming technique observed, corrected, and refined by an experienced swimming coach.

His coach breaks down the complexity of a swimming stroke and using various techniques focuses on one thing at a time – breathing, arm movements, or kicking. Then she brings it all back together. When they do it all at once though, the perfect stroke may degenerate as they try to do it while kicking and breathing – all at the same time. The coach brings her experience to bear, provides feedback, and cheers the kids’ on to continue working at it even though the payoff isn’t immediate.

Does this feel like your career or your job search? That’s why career and job search help is called “coaching”. The coach isn’t going to do the work for you but will help you identify problem spots and work with you to refine your techniques and help you become more confident and efficient. Over the last few years of working with the lovely ladies of the Empowerment Center, I have been privileged to watch how they help and work with their clients and truly coach clients toward their goals.

When you’re job searching, how much time are you spending looking at job postings on the internet? You may be spending hours doing that weekly and feel like you’re being productive in your search, but the reality is, you can’t hide in your house and expect to find a job that way. Job Search Coach Cindy Virtue points out you shouldn’t be spending more than 5-10% of your time using the internet. She notes that you get more bang for your buck networking in person. You’ll have more success with those job postings if you can make a live contact at the company via your network. As part of her coaching technique, Cindy evaluates clients and identify areas that need strengthening such as whether they’re spending too much time on activities that won’t pay big dividends when job hunting. She provides feedback and encouragement as the client moves forward on her job search.

Perhaps you’ve been in your position for years. You’re bored with the work and would like to move upward in your career but you’re not sure if it is within the same company or another job altogether. You live for the weekends when you can hike and bike outside and volunteer with a local recreation league that helps adapt outdoor activities for people with disabilities. You meet with a Life Coach who helps you identify that what you like about the job is the security of the paycheck but the work itself isn’t what you want to do for the next 20 years. The coach helps you develop a plan to go back to the local community college and get your credential as a physical therapist while keeping your day job. Life Coach Maria points out that much of what she does with clients is to help find a path, break complex issues into smaller, more manageable pieces, and holds the clients accountable as they work through their plan toward their goals.

Consider some of the biggest names in sports – Michael Phelps or Gabrielle Douglas. These athletes have amazing talent but they still have coaches in their corner helping them work on their weaknesses, inefficiencies, and pushing them to continue to work harder. Who is in your corner? How can one of our coaches help you meet your goals?


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