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On Being a Relevant Coach

Last week we had the pleasure of being an exhibitor at the 3rd annual St. Thomas Executive Coaching in Organizations Conference.

DeAnne Aussem gave a great opening keynote.  Among many gems covered was the topic of relevance as a coach: how well you and your coaching offering stack up as being worthwhile.

For me in the audience it was a wonderful window into a challenge area that coaches face, and as she presented a 3-part framework for boosting relevance I was struck by how well CoachAccountable was already poised to help coaches to be more relevant.

If you’re already using CoachAccountable (or even just considering it), it’s worth being familiar with all the ways it can serve you.  Making you more relevant is no exception.  So with that in mind, let’s look at that framework and consider how CA can fit in to each part:

1. Establish: Building a compelling value proposition

I think it’s fair to say that, when it comes to how you operate as a coach, you never want people to think (or even wonder if) you’re just some someone with a notebook and a telephone.

In distancing ourselves from that more nebulous perception, compelling can take many forms.  These include credible expertise, a professional system, offerings that are easy to understand, and maybe even a window into your process & how you work.

While CoachAccountable can’t do much for you in the expertise department (it’ll never seek to replace the human element in coaching!), it can give you a significant advantage with the other three:

  1. That you have a branded client portal, one which tracks real numbers, puts good ideas into a clear record of to-dos (and dones), and serves as a documented record of the whole process, speaks volumes to your professionalism.
  2. The combination of CoachAccountable Offerings and Engagements makes it easy to define and present the coaching packages you offer, and makes selling them from your own website a cinch.
  3. Because largely made up of conversations, coaching is hard to show off to curious parties (particularly those considering hiring you).  But the records and structures used in your CoachAccountable account are readily downloaded, exported, embedded, and shared.  Just showing off a good screenshot or two of a coaching relationship in progress demystifies the whole thing.

2. Demonstrate: Claiming my coaching credibility

I feel that when it comes to coach credibility, credentials are a great start but nothing speaks more powerfully than real results.  Using CoachAccountable means accumulating any or all of the following with your clients:

  • A record of past completions
  • Metrics that show the progression of KPIs
  • Written accounts of challenges, breakthroughs and wins

Any of these constitute a real story of what clients can expect in working with you, thus making it easy to demonstrate your credibility.

3. Maintain: Innovate service offerings

When someone has worked with you for a substantial length of time, does that work become a rote thing that might just feel like going through the motions?  Or can you inject a certain newness that gives the experience excitement similar to the start?

Here again CoachAccountable can help.  It supports and facilitates several modalities of the coaching experience: 1-on-1, group participation, and independent work within courses you create.  If one of these is your standard thing, you could offer another up as a way vary and deepen their work with you.

Even if it’s just, for example, 1-on-1 coaching through and through, you can inject variety and texture through offering one or more mini-course “modules” that your clients could work through.

For example you could design a 3-week course on establishing and retaining work-life balance, consisting of certain materials to read, assignments to do, and things to track.  Prescribe as needed to clients during your working relationship, allowing them to work through the course with benefit of your personal oversight and support.  This leverages your time: design once, use again and again.


Relevance is a great lens by which to evaluate and strengthen yourself as a coach.  I agree with DeAnne: if you can establish your offering to be compelling, demonstrate your credibility, and innovate to keep the experience enduringly valued you’re doing well to have real relevance as a coach.

1 Comment »

  1. Glenn ost said,

    January 31, 2019 @ 7:30 am

    Hi John,

    Thanks for sharing although I was already aware of your relevance and of CA in the first couple of days of our incounter!

    Keep up the AMAZING work and looking forward to work with you many more decades!

    Glenn

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