In sport having a coach is fact given for granted in order to guarantee performance, focussed effort, attention to details and continuous stretching of your personal motivation to succeed. Many of the top performers in the show business or in politics are using more or less regularly the expertise of a professional personal coach. A growing number of large companies and organizations are instilling a coaching culture as a definitive turn from the classic regimented management style based on control and command.
A survey, run by the International Coaching Federation, has revealed a number of highly positive results out of a sample of over 200 business owners, professionals and managers that used coaching. The main role of the coach was: 84.8 % sounding board, 78.1% motivator, 56.7% friend and 50.5% mentor. Among the outcomes of coaching we can see: 67.6% higher level of self-awareness, 62.4% smarter goal-setting, 60.5% more balanced life and 57.1% lower stress levels. The typical issues addressed by the coach we can list: 84.5 % time management, 74.3% career guidance, 73.8% business advice and 58.6% relationship / family issues.
In business people have historically used various sources of education and personal skill to fill the gap between what is expected from their employer or clients and what their natural performance is. There are obviously many multi skilled people that can plan, organize, manage, sell, invoice, recover credits and grow their business all alone.
As their business grows also the need for more and more specialized skill increases and the single business owner or the partners involved in the business tend to run out of their personal skills. From time to time we all acknowledge the need of a:
- Solicitor to prepare and check business contracts or to manage some unfortunate litigations with clients and supplier
- Accountant to prepare the company accounts and tax return
- HR expert for employment matters
- Marketing expert for PR, adverts, promotion
- Computer support to guarantee an efficient and smooth running of our computer systems
The list can be a lot longer depending on the circumstances: it is accepted and common understanding that for a large number of specialized services you will ask for the expertise of a person or company that offers and guarantees success in a particular area.
At the same time when it’s about personal performance, organization, time management, motivation and people management there is a general assumption that these skills can be learnt in the field, with little or no formal preparation or training. A professional executive coach can help you focussing on the two or perhaps three areas you would like to boost or improve in your current job and support you to achieve excellence.
So as a conclusion to this post I would suggest the following. If we are asking “who needs a coach?” the answer could be: “most people that want to excel in what they are doing”.