When you’re in the midst of a mid-career crisis or professional reinvention, the right career coach can be a lifesaver who can help you identify potential future direction and the path to reach them. But how do you find the right one?
Understand Your Motivation
Begin your career coach search by asking yourself why you need a career coach in the first place? What are some of the pain points you’re experiencing professionally? Have you tried to solve them on your own without much luck? Think of what you’d ideally like to achieve by working with a career coach. Just as career paths vary so do client objectives and goals. That’s why it’s very important to be clear about what you want, and need.
A few common scenarios include:
- You want to create structure and gain momentum when it comes to your job search.
- The CV you’re applying with isn’t doing the trick and you’d like some help with this vital document to make it more appetizing for the future employers.
- After job searching on your own, you’re frustrated by a lack of employer responses or actual offers.
- You’re returning to work after a break, layoff, health issue, or other situation that’s left a “gap” on your CV.
- It’s been a while since your last job search.
Identify what you want to learn
Because career coaches come from widely diverse backgrounds, they have different skills and insights to offer you. If you want to make the right choice, identify upfront what you’d like to learn from the experience.
Recognize it’s not forever
It’s important to recognize that different coaches may be uniquely suited to help you at different phases of your career. As you progress professionally, your challenges will change over the years. Today, you may be looking for help finding your true passion or making a career change; in 10 or 20 years, your goal may be a fulfilling second act in retirement.
Education/ Experience/ References
You should look for several key factors in your career coach, but here are the four most important ones:
You need your career coach to have an education and experience in coaching. That’s obvious but you also need to make sure that the career coach you choose has experience working with clients like you or your business.
Request a Free Initial Consultation
It is very reasonable to ask for a free initial consultation. This will help you determine if the company/coaches style and approach fits your comfort zone. Don’t be shy, make sure your contract (and you should have a contract) has everything you need to give you comfort that your time and money will be well spent.