Earlier this week, we talked about what career coaching is, and busted some of the most common myths associated with career coaching. If you know about career coaching but are not sure about it 100%, this post is for you. If you think you know career coaching, click on the link above to see if what you know is 100% true!
Now that we have adjusted our understanding of what a career coach is and what career coaching can do for you, let’s talk about how you know it’s time to hire a career coach:
5 Signs You Need A Career Coach:
1. You have a specific goal but you’re not sure how to accomplish it
2. You see recurring themes or patterns of problems in your career or work life but you don’t know why they’re happening or how to resolve it
3. You know you have the potential to accomplish more but you’re currently not realizing that potential
4. You want/need someone to validate the path you have built and hold you accountable for accomplishing your goals
5. You feel stuck, lost, uninspired by what you do for work and want to change that
I’ve been writing on Cubicle Chic for 2.5 years, I consider myself somewhat of a career development enthusiast. Naturally, I had to see for myself and actually experience what it’s like to work with a career coach. Meike Hennon at Shinebright kindly offered a 1:1, 60-minute session with me to go over career coaching is done and how she helps her clients. During the session, we explored and discovered what my strengths are and the session was an eye-opening experience. (I finally understood why I always feel the need to document things and hold onto information like it’s going to change my world…)
Here are a couple of things that I’ve learned about myself from this consultation session with Meike at Shinebright:
- According to my personality profile, my strengths are (in this order) Input, Context, Activator, Strategic, and Individualization. This practically means I have exactly the right mix of personality & traits to be a blogger. This explains why I keep coming back to blogging. Something I thought was just a hobby has turned into a habit over the last 3 years!
- I need to recognize when my strengths are working against me. In other words, if I become aware of my strengths and how to activate them and when, then I can play my strengths to the maximum. It would also mean that I will recognize when my strength act against me. For example, people that have the “CONTEXT” strength are usually obsessed information (useful or random), historical data, and WHY things are the way they are. But they also tend to focus on these interest of theirs when they have conversations with people, despite the fact that others may not be interested in what they are obsessed with. I notice I sometimes have the tendency to do this. But I also know when to shut up and talk about what others want to talk about…when I see their gaze starting to wander and look away.
Other Success Stories
I also asked Meike to share a few of her clients’ success stories. Here are two professionals with different gender, age, background but both found success through Meike’s help as a career coach. Meike has kindly provided the following two examples from her coaching experience of how career coaching leads to successful outcomes:
Client A. Age: 26, female, Sarah (not her real name)
- Strengths: communication, strategic, relator, input, and empathy
- Job Change: Transitioned from digital marketing in a big firm to work on a small communications team for corporate execs.
Sarah came to me with a lot of anxiety and hated her job. We dug into her strengths and realized her input and communication strengths had brought her a lot of success in crafting messaging and had resulted in success in her marketing role, but she was unhappy due to her strengths relator and empathy in the toxic and competitive work environment. These aspects of her identity were not being “fed” in her work environment and as an empath, she was suffering and feeling overwhelmed by the toxicity.
Within 2 weeks of our working together, Sarah quit her job and we began exploring career possibilities while still developing her understanding of her strengths. We also discussed how to grow her network in an authentic way that was a reflection of her strengths and how she operated naturally.
During this time, Sarah was told of a job opening on a small team that crafted the executive messaging to large corporations. It seemed like an awesome opportunity and she found it through growing her network based on her strengths. We strategized for her to show up and be her best in the interview process. It worked, Sarah got the job. The small team environment was a good fit for someone with empathy and relator as strengths, and the communications aspect of the work fed her other strengths. It was a great fit and tapped into her entire set of strengths.
Client B. Age – 47, male, James (not his real name)
- Strengths: ideation, WOO, arranger, futuristic and strategic
- Job Change: Laid off from VP of Marketing at a big tech firm and became CEO
James came to work with me after leaving an executive role at a big software company he had worked at for 20 years. During his job change, he was given a career coach as part of his severance package but the coach was very old school. My client knew if he followed the advice of that coach he would end up with the same job he had left. He found me via the WEWORK network, which is where I have my office. James was searching to rediscover his true self in order to find a career that aligned with the deepest aspects of his identity, one in which he could flourish on every level.
We dove into his strengths and James blossomed during the development phase. He learned aspects of himself that he had not known before and others that he had pushed down in order to climb the corporate ladder. Within this new found knowledge, we determined he was excellent at ideating and curating moving parts, thanks to his strengths ideation and arranger. James also used his Woo talent (winning others over) everywhere he went, making new connections and establishing great connections. It was not long after we determined the type of role as a curator that he was offered and accepted the role of CEO for a technology software company co-founded by two engineers that did not want the stress of being the CEO. James has since found happiness and a level of engagement in his new role that he had previously not thought possible.
Disclaimer: I would like to thank Shinebright for extending me the opportunity of a complimentary 1:1 session to understand their career coaching offerings. I am not compensated for writing and publishing this article. And of course, as always, the opinion expressed in the blog post is 100% my own.