Lots of people want to know why they should hire a coach when they have such terrific, loyal, and empathetic friends.
Here are some things that a good coach will do for you that your best friend might not:
- Focus on you – Have you ever noticed how just when you need to talk about a problem or an issue, your friend wants to chime in with their story? “Well if you think that’s bad, let me tell you what happened to me!” A coach will focus on you and your story, sharing examples only if they help you learn and grow.
- Listen professionally – A good coach is a trained professional listener. They hear what you are saying and help you listen to yourself.
- Be honest with you! – “But my friends are all honest with me… Aren’t they?” Sometimes the people who are closest to you may want to avoid hurting you. They may fear losing your friendship. And frankly, because they like you so much, they may see only your good points.
- Be objective – When it comes to your personal and professional life, your friends are far from neutral. If you are considering a career change that may move you across the country, it will be hard for your best friend to be impartial as they help you decide.
- Avoid commiserating – It’s nice to have someone to dump on when you’re down or have had a hard day. A coach will be there in the bad times as well as the good. A coach, however, knows when and how to gently push you out of your pity party and into positive action.
- Move you to action – Like your best friend, your coach wants to hear your dreams and goals. It is the rare best friend that will guide you towards a plan and concrete “do-able” actions. Coaching without action is just a pleasant conversation.
- Develop a structured relationship with purpose – While meeting with your coach will be fun, there is a definite purpose for your getting together. That purpose may be to help you solve a problem, or reach a goal, or pursue your dream. Whatever you are seeking, your coach will work to keep you focused and moving forward.
- Hold you accountable – A coach is not a parent. Your coach will work with you as an adult, expecting you to keep commitments and take action. Many people move forward successfully just from knowing that they have made a verbal commitment to another person.
- Avoid judgment – You coach will be unconditionally supportive. They will be your cheerleader when you succeed and a gentle encourager when you fall down.
- Celebrate your success – With luck, all of your friends will be happy, excited and proud of your success. Unfortunately, however, even those people who care for you may occasionally feel threatened or jealous of your accomplishments. Your coach will always rejoice in your triumphs.
© Stephanie McDilda