Coaching is about helping your clients achieve the goals they set for themselves which often involves helping them see other perspectives. Coaches help clients have a change in perspective.
However, coaches also need to have a change in their coaching perspective if they are going to help their clients and coach with impact and proficiency. Many new coaches are drawn to professional coach training because they have been told that they know how to “fix” problems that others have. Perhaps they have done this in their family or at work.
They are often surprised when they take their first life coach training class to find that coaching, or at least good coaching is not about fixing people at all. Professional coaches embrace the understanding that our clients are not “broken” and they don’t need to be “fixed”. They come to us for support and clarity and to have help during the transitions of work and life. They want to create a different experience going forward.
When a coach has the right starting perspective, she can help her clients experience the changes and shifts they want to make.
The First Important Coaching Perspective and How it Helps Clients
The first important perspective every coach should have is the understanding that we coach people not problems.
The problem people come in with is rarely a complete picture of the situation. The real situation is often under the surface, wrapped in other circumstances that the client has not yet revealed. Not because they are keeping anything from you, most likely they are not even clear about all the details that impact their concern. When the coach listens with the understanding that they are not there to fix a problem but to engage with a person, they can hear what’s happening under the surface. They are listening for the meaning of the concern that the client has not for how to fix their client.
The Second Important Coaching Perspective and how it Helps Clients
The second important coaching perspective every coach should have is knowing there is a sort of magic that happens in the coaching conversation and that magic happens inside of your client.
An advanced coach knows that the sparks, magic and brilliant moments are not about the coach but about what’s happening inside the client as you create a safe space for them to process. They will make shifts during your coaching conversation that they have been trying to make for months or years. The credit and genius belongs to the client. This does not discount the work that you do with them, it just means that you don’t have to do the heavy lifting for your client. With your support, they do it themselves and the confidence and joy they feel because of your work together is incredible and attractive. They build trust and connection with you.
The Third Important Coaching Perspective and how it Helps Clients
The third important perspective: every coach should be genuinely curious. Curiosity will lead you to coach clients in any industry. If you are coaching an Executive in the Financial Industry you don’t need to know everything she knows but you do have to be curious about her concern and her world. The more you leave your judgement about her situation behind and explore with your coaching client the things that concern her the more effectively you will be able to provide a place for her to go deeper where she may see more than she would see by staying on the surface.
These are not the only perspectives that a coach needs to have when they work with their clients, but they are important ones.
Advanced coach training produces advanced coaches who help people in magnificent ways, in ways that matter to them most.