Can you remember that one moment that elevated your career to the next level? Maybe it was taking a chance on a new company, choosing a specific mentor or volunteering for a project. No matter what it was, we all seem to remember that moment. Mine was Oprah. Oprah Launched My Coaching Career!
One of my most memorable clients came to coaching because he saw me ‘on Oprah’. At least that’s how he introduced himself to me. You see, Oprah was featuring a life coach on her show that week, and he happened to be watching the show.
A week earlier, I had been asked by my local station that carries Oprah to be interviewed about this concept of “Life Coaching”. I was interviewed and shown as a lead into their newscast that would follow Oprah that day. You see, I was never ‘on Oprah’ (sure wish I had been) but was seen during a break on the Oprah Show that day. What an amazing opportunity, to be featured in relation with Oprah early in my career as a coach. So much has transpired over my 16 years of coaching. Of course, there are many interpretations of coaching, which can cause some confusion.
What Is Coaching?
The coaching industry has grown so much over my 17 years of coaching. The industry has expanded to include a multitude of specialties, applications and options. Too often when our team introduces our services to an organization, there is a gap in our understanding of what coaching provides for clients.
Coaching is “a process that aims to improve performance and focuses on the ‘here and now’ rather than on the distant past or future” (skillsyouneed.com). It focused on setting and completing goals that provide the greatest meaning, satisfaction and fulfillment in everyday living. In coaching, we believe that the client has the answers to their own challenges, and it is our role to support them in navigating to that answer. The gap between where we are and where we want to be is where the coaching relationship occurs. Coaching provides the skills and techniques to support the journey from where the client is – and where that client desires to BE!
Sometimes, there is a fear that a client is signing up for, or being asked to receive, some type of psychotherapy. That is a misconception about coaching. Psychological principles and tools are extremely valuable in addressing certain challenges but should not be used by a coach who is focused on your ‘here and now’.
Understanding the “Accreditations” of Coaches
When I first became a coach, being trained and accredited in a reputable and professional organization was vitally important to me. Anyone can call themselves a “coach” and many people do. The key for companies is to learn how to determine between a highly trained coach and someone who just wants to call themselves a coach.
There is no licensure in coaching, as of yet. One of the most reputable agencies is the International Coaching Federation (ICF) which has a multitude of levels of coaches. Therefore, the highest competence is qualified and tested by the ICF to measure the professional training and techniques that make a strong coaching experience work for the clients. Personally, I am an Internationally Certified Professional Coach (PCC). This guarantees I hold certain training standards, have demonstrated my coaching abilities, continually develop myself and provide an exceptional level of service.
My Organization’s Coaching Philosophy
Continuous Learning: My coaching energy has soared with the addition of new models, techniques and tools that support my clients’ journeys. Much of this additional material comes from the world of neuroscience and brain research. We have the ability to do so much more than we ever knew we could because of how much we now understand about the science of the brain, how it works, and how to maximize its use in our daily living.
Research-Based: My coaching organization, LEAP Training and Coaching, has developed programs around the ICF Principles of Coaching and the extensive developments in the field of neuroscience. Sounds ‘heady’ - well, no pun included, but it’s actually the most practical and useful use of solid tools that you will ever find to attain the on-going goals you set for yourself, your career, your relationships, and your own fulfilling and satisfying life.
Growth Mindset: If this sounds exciting or enticing to you, interview one or more coaches to find out what it might do for you, your career, your team or your own company. You know, everyone can use the tools provided by competent coaches. Every famous athlete in our world today has a Coach. Whether it’s to improve their physical conditioning, their golf swing or dunking technique - they hang out with a great coach as much as they can to discover new and exciting tools to perform at a higher level.