How To Choose The Perfect Coach For You

You know you'd benefit from some coaching and you're not sure where to begin with finding someone. Here's some helpful tips.

1)   Know what you’re looking for.

Sounds obvious but with so many options and specialisms to choose from it helps to get very clear what you’re looking for. Are you looking for a life coach? A business coach? A health & fitness coach? Someone who works across several or all realms?

Also consider what style you want them to have. Is it someone “woo-woo”, spiritual and out there? Someone who’ll be challenging and relentless in pushing you like every session is an emotional bootcamp? Someone formal, process driven and highly structured? Someone nurturing and therapeutical where you explore things at a deeper level? etc.

When you know what you’re looking for it makes it much easier to narrow down the search and also to know when you’ve found it!

2)   Ask for referrals.

Friends, asking on Facebook, colleagues, HR departments and networking groups (on and offline) are great ways to find good people. If someone has been recommended by someone you trust it’ll most likely set you at ease more quickly than when opening up to a total stranger allowing you to move on to the challenging stuff you want to work on more quickly.

3)  Go online (cleverly!)

Rather than jumping straight to googling “Life Coach London” and choosing those that appear on the front page (who are often there because of big marketing budgets not competence or experience), look at some of the coaching associations to find a suitable coach near you. 

The Association for Coaching (AoC), International Coach Federation (ICF) are good places to start as they demand proof of training and experience in order to list someone. I'm personally registered and certified by The Association for Coaching and INLPTA (NLP trainer's association) and I abide by their codes of ethics. This means you're working with someone who takes their profession seriously and operates to high standards of integrity. The Life Coach Directory also has many good coaches and does do some checking though is a little less stringent about who they feature.

4)   Make a Shortlist

Make a shortlist of 3-5 who you want to speak to. Reputable coaches will offer a free “chemistry call” before they try to sign you up and it’s great to use this and shop around. This should not be a hard-sell but more an exploration of what you’re working with an an opportunity to get a sense of that person’s style and if you’ll be comfortable working together. Here you can also ask questions about what other types of clients like you they've worked with, what to expect in sessions, whether or not they are registered with professional associations and receive supervision. 

5)   Trust Your Instinct and Give It a Go!

Once you’re clear about what you want, have done a bit of research and have connected with the coach personally then it's really time to trust your gut instinct and go with the person that feels right for you. If they are making promises that sound too good to be true (I'll change your life or make you a millionaire) they probably are. If they have loads of qualifications but you just don’t click – then you will probably continue to not click.  Just because they worked for your friend they may not work for you. I know it's a big jump and often a big investment, especially if you're working with someone in high demand, however you've come too far not to give it your best shot. Trust your gut, give it a go and see where it takes you!

 

If you’d like to explore whether I’m a good fit for you as a coach I offer a free initial consultation of up to 30 minutes. Get in touch and let’s have a no-obligation no-hard sell chat. If I'm not right for you I'll try to help you find someone who is.