How to Get the Most From Your Life Or Executive Coach

By  | 

How to Get the Most From Your Life Or Executive Coach

Life coaching requires helping clients find answers within themselves – this may sometimes be uncomfortable.

Life coaches differ from therapists and counselors in that their focus is to empower individuals to reach specific goals, regardless of any circumstance or obstacles they might be encountering. Here are a few tips for making the most out of working with one:

1. Set Aside Time For Coaching

Just like any training process, coaching takes time. To get the most from it, be sure to prioritize every call with your coach and be there every session. When meeting with an executive coach, they may encourage you to bring up any difficulties or struggles that you are currently facing in your personal life as part of this dialogue. These conversations can help you to become an even stronger leader while increasing confidence.

A great coach will push you outside your comfort zone and alter your perspective, but only if you are open and committed to the process will you see results. Without changing perspective or making the effort required for success, your experience may not deliver as much enjoyment or satisfaction.

Make sure that when scheduling coaching sessions, leave enough buffer time between calls in order to prepare, review and debrief them as well as complete any other necessary tasks that may come up. This will enable you to maximize the impact of each one and allow for maximum effectiveness in results.

An effective coaching session requires scheduling it when your energy levels are at their highest, to make sure that this energy transfers through to your client and boosts them as well. When your energy drops below normal, clients can sense this and become less engaged with conversation; vice versa for when your energies rise again.

2. Don’t Overcomplicate Things

One of the hallmarks of an excellent coach is helping others see things clearly, whether that means encouraging clients to step outside their comfort zones, exploring new avenues for professional growth or simply discussing an issue from different perspectives.

Life or executive coaches that excel will ask questions to gain an in-depth understanding of your desired outcomes and why you set specific goals, as well as making sure they align with what’s meaningful to you and their impact on others’ lives. Successful coaches possess strong personal brands with clear messages for clients to deliver to.

Things at work can easily become overcomplicated; for instance, meetings about meetings, project teams, complicated language, spaghetti-like hierarchies, office politics or even just signing off a report can become overly complex. A newcomer who hasn’t become immersed in company processes often highlights where things could be simplified or improved upon.

Moral codes can become further complexated when we live according to an unethical moral code. Living a way we know is wrong while trying to hide this fact from others will only increase complexity for ourselves. To avoid this happening, be honest with yourself and others, leading an ethical life, living accordingly.

3. Ask Questions

As a coach, your aim should be to assist clients in finding answers to their life questions. To do so successfully requires digging deeper than what initially appears; asking people about their past can provide insight into any obstacles which are keeping them from making progress towards moving forward with life.

As part of effective communication, it’s also crucial that the appropriate questions are asked at the right time. For instance, when speaking with clients about work-related problems it would be wise to avoid emotionally or personal inquiries too soon, as these could make them feel awkward or start the discussion off negatively.

Good questions should be clear and descriptive without being too wordy, while also conveying confidence and trustworthiness. Knowing when and how to be formal/informal/casual with someone can be essential, as is understanding their vibe; being too formal with someone may actually put off trust or come across as intimidating.

As is the case with any conversation, asking closed-off questions with only yes or no responses won’t move the discussion forward. Instead, open-ended inquiries which encourage your discussion partner to explore and develop ideas are key if you want to advance. Some effective open-ended queries include asking “How are you feeling about these new policies being implemented?” or “What do you think about this company’s recent policy updates?” You might come up with great insights by simply asking these simple queries!

4. Be Honest

Doing your best in coaching relationships requires being completely open and honest with your coach, especially in executive coaching situations where coaches deal with clients who have acquired considerable power and privilege over time. Sometimes blunt honesty might not work as effectively as subtler approaches that show more respect and delicacy when discussing sensitive subjects like these.

When your coach observes that you aren’t spending enough time doing charity work or exercising, this should be taken seriously. Instead of dismissing this advice immediately, consider ways in which this issue could be rectified – perhaps by changing up your schedule to allow more charity and/or exercise time?

When your coach points out that you tend to see things from an all-or-nothing viewpoint, take this information seriously and think about whether making changes will help you see more positive aspects in life.

Honesty may be difficult at times, but it’s essential for getting the most from your coaching experience. Without being honest about your strengths and weaknesses, identifying them would become much harder, hindering any chance to leverage your relationship with a coach to its maximum potential.

Assuming you have recently been promoted to management, this will require new skills that you may not yet possess. An executive coach can assist in building key soft skills like communication and teambuilding that will allow for your success in this new position.

5. Be Open

People who are open to experience are more receptive to change, new experiences, and being able to “think outside the box”. They are more flexible with existing mental models and beliefs as they recognize what’s not working as well as what does. While changing old beliefs or adopting different perspectives may result in cognitive dissonance for some time – that is all part of learning and personal growth!

These individuals tend to be highly interested in hearing different perspectives on issues, and seek dialogue among colleagues for discussion of opposing viewpoints. This can help create a holistic approach to problem-solving while being creative about finding ways to overcome obstacles more creatively. As such, it is imperative that you maintain an open mindset when meeting with an executive coach, listening attentively without interrupting when receiving their feedback.

Being open involves actively seeking evidence against your preferred beliefs, plans or goals and then weighing it fairly when available. This helps avoid confirmation bias where we seek evidence that supports our position over all others possibilities.

As long as you maintain an open mindset and accept feedback from your executive coach, they should find it easier to assess your leadership potential, highlight strengths, and identify blind spots. That is why successful leaders invest in their leadership development with coaching, mentors, peers and feedback from those close to them; being vulnerable enough to open yourself up for feedback can take courage, grit and emotional intelligence; it could take your career further than ever!