In Australia, anyone can call themselves a coach. It is an unregulated industry which means that anyone can call themselves a coach and start imparting their wisdom on paying customers. Many new coaches have had some successes in their own businesses and careers and feel that this justifies their fee and the title on their business card. For me the title of coach holds a certain stigma and yet coaching is a term that is widely used in academic literature, and so is unavoidable.
To further demonstrate how poorly the term is understood, I have bumped into coaches who look to systematise or digitise coaching methods implying that coaching communication is one directional. For example. The coach talks and the coachees job is to listen through coaching videos and e-learning tutorials.
If you have had the privilege to witness ‘true coaching’, you may have seen that the opposite is true. In true coaching, the coachee does most of the talking and the coach skillfully asks the right questions to invite critical thinking. In ‘true coaching’ the coaches job to to act as your thinking partner and to uncover your ideas, your thoughts and your solutions that were not previously accessible. A coaching conversation is unlike anything you are likely to have experienced before. The conversation is often challenging but at the same time supportive.
Cookie cutter coaching assumes that what works for one business will work for everyone. This seems logical enough but this is rarely the case. Why is that?
The reason is simple that you as a business owner are an individual. You have a unique set of experiences. strengths, values and skills. Lets assume that for some strange reason you were a carbon copy of your mentor, identical in every way. Can you still execute the same steps that you mentor did and expect the same degree of success? The answer is still no. The market moves and evolves faster than ever before. There are new competitors and substitutions all the time so what worked yesterday does not necessarily guarantee success today.
What matters in coaching is that we take you through a supportive thinking process to explore your ideas thoroughly, drawing on your ideas, skills and experience. Together we can look to maximise your opportunities and shine a light on dark corners.
Just remember that as appetising and appealing as the cookie may be, its not necessarily in your best interest to eat it.
Dave Birchall is a Sydney digital marketing and sales expert with a love for conversion rate optimisation, eCommerce and online growth. He is accredited in Google Analytics, Tag Manager and Adwords among other things. He has owned and run large and small ecommerce businesses in Australia, New Zealand, the US, UK and China.
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