So you’ve finally hired an executive coach—which means you can sit back and let the results start rolling in, right?
The truth is, if you want to make the most of this opportunity, you’ll need to do a lot of hard work. Plus, if you truly want to leverage your business coach, there are a few strategies to keep in mind. Here are a few steps to help you maximize the experience.
1. Commit to the process.
Change never happens overnight. It’s a process, and if you’re truly committed, you have to go all in. Be ready to stretch farther than you thought you could, because change only happens outside your comfort zone, and a good coach helps you get there.
2. It won’t be easy.
The best executive coach will constantly challenge you. As stated above, you’ll be doing a lot of hard work—and you’ll only get out of it what you’re willing to put in. Give it your all, though, and I promise you’ll get much more out of the process.
3. Set your vision from the start.
Know what you want yourself to look like at the end of coaching, and share this vision with your executive coach. With this, the two of you can develop a series of measurable goals and milestones to help you both understand what the “new you” should look like in a month, six months, or a year. Don’t forget to plan with consistent and measurable goals to make sure you stay on track. Use these goals to evaluate your progress and course-correct when necessary.
4. Learn to leverage your strengths.
Often, we get coaching to shore up our weaknesses, but the real power is in leveraging your strengths. A good business coach can help drive you toward excellence, so don’t be afraid to ask them about honing your strengths. Have them teach you to maximize and apply your strengths, as well as how to seek out situations that take advantage of them.
5. Be open with your executive coach.
If you keep to surface-level topics, you’ll only see superficial benefits. One thing working in your favor is that your coach is on your team! Coaches have an ethical responsibility to confidentiality. Your business coach works for you. They’re your partner. This means that your conversations take place in a safe zone, so open up to let them help you get better results.
6. Accept feedback.
Again, your coach works for you—and one thing you’re paying for is honest feedback. This can be tough when it’s something you don’t want to hear, but it’s better to receive criticism from your coach than from your boss or colleagues. Remain accepting rather than defensive, and start putting the feedback to good use.
7. Do the work.
Coaching isn’t a class you walk into unprepared. If you’re going to get results, you’ll want to read over the agenda for your coaching session and prepare questions and concerns to work on. In addition, you’ll need to put the skills and strategies you learn into practice as you go through your workweek.
If you’ve gone through the trouble of hiring an executive coach, do yourself a favor and commit to the work. Take advantage of the opportunity—because though the work may push you out of your comfort zone, it’s only by committing that you’ll see the real power of coaching.