When I started my business, one of the first things I did was write a blog post explaining what coaching is. There are a lot of misconceptions about coaching, not to mention people who have never even heard of coaching as a profession. Now, with two-and-a-half years of experience as a business and career transition coach, I’ve discovered how fulfilling my job can be, and I’ve worked with clients who come from a wide spectrum of backgrounds and fields. Most of them have one thing in common: they want to live, work, and earn on their own terms.
Is career coaching for you? While every client is different, my clients most often fall into one of the three categories below. See whether you recognize yourself in one of them.
1. You’re in a full-time job but you want to make a major shift in your career.
The majority of my clients are women ages 25 to 45 who are looking to make a major shift in their careers. Clients who are in full-time jobs are looking to shift into careers as freelancers, consultants, or small business owners. It’s a huge lifestyle change to go from a 9-5 office job into a new business where you’re accountable only to yourself. Some of my clients maintain full-time jobs while also building their side hustle, while others are ready to make the side hustle a full-time gig. It means that many clients are pulled in multiple directions all at once, and it can be overwhelming to manage. That’s where coaching comes in to the picture and helps you identify the best way to take real steps towards your goal. Coaching also helps you determine what’s holding you back. Are you standing in your own way? Do you lack support and resources? Are you constantly dreaming, but don’t have the motivation to execute? A career transition happens most successfully when you’re clear on your goals, your obstacles, and your plan of action. As a coach, my job is to listen, guide and help you take steps towards success.
2. You need someone to hold you accountable.
Want homework? (Can you believe you’re saying yes?) Holding clients accountable is a hugely important aspect of my coaching sessions, and my clients often tell me that this dynamic makes a huge difference for them and/or their businesses. Clients know that we’ll check in about their progress at our weekly meeting, and it provides motivation to cross things off the list or do the thing that they’ve been procrastinating about. If fear, stress, or boredom are keeping you from doing something, accountability is the perfect antidote to that. And with accountability, there’s also momentum; once you make progress, the next steps come more easily.
3. You feel stuck and wonder whether things will ever change.
The most fulfilling thing for me as a coach is seeing clients successfully live the lives they want. If you’ve read my Defining Success series, you know that everyone’s idea of success is different, and I love helping clients realize what success means for them. Often, clients come to me feeling extremely stuck in their jobs and like they will never make the transition to their dream career. Take my client who had worked in the gallery world for twelve years. She was miserable, and despite the fact that she was making good money, she wasn’t challenged or inspired. She left the job to become a business development consultant and yoga teacher and she’s so happy with her choice to change her life around. That’s what inspires me to keep doing what I do. When I see clients find the freedom that comes with living and working on their own terms, it’s incredibly rewarding.