In my experience of being an internal coach at a software company and having a private coaching practice, there are five main reasons people get coached. The details may be different, and the clients may explain their situations in different ways, but when boiled down to the essential, the reasons for getting coached can be counted on one hand.
Once you learn these five reasons, you can discern what clients are really looking for. And once you discern their real need, you can make clear the value you’ll bring them, and then coach them in extraordinary ways.
In our coach survey that kicked off 2018, we found that coaches most often wanted clients to say their services were valuable and helpful. If you help your client to understand what they’re really looking for, and then coach around that need, they’ll sing your praises because you were valuable and helpful to them.
An assessment like this may help to narrow down their areas of need:
Here are the five big reasons people get coached.
Relieve present pain
There is an area of pain in the client’s life. They don’t want to keep going on with it, but they can’t get relief on their own. It may be an obstacle to overcome, a sense of aimlessness or regret, a problem they can’t solve, something else.
Improve power skills
The client wants to learn or improve important skills. Improving these skills will make a big difference in their life or work. They’re power skills. If they weren’t important, the client wouldn’t seek out help.
Fix a broken relationship
There’s a broken relationship that needs fixed. Maybe there are more. Whether in marriage, family, friendship or work, the client is seeking a healthier relationship, and can’t get there alone.
Gain new insights
The client is seeking new understanding. It could be in a variety of areas involving oneself or others or life or work. They want a new perspective, alternative points of view. They want to see the world in ways they hadn’t considered before.
Get fresh hope
Hope is one of the most powerful forces out there, and the client is looking for some fresh hope “in here.” If hope could rise, even in a small dose, it would make all the difference. Hope could provide the next step.
As you work with people, listen for the reason they want to get coached. Is it to relieve present pain, improve power skills, fix a broken relationship, gain new insights, or get fresh hope? Understanding what they’re looking for will help you deliver value in extraordinary ways!
As you do, you may come across some myths that are getting in the way. How will you overcome them?