“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”
The great Vince Lombardi
A friend reached out to me recently saying she needed a life coach who would work strictly on her professional career. That’s probably the best way to describe a career coach. A career coach is someone who will help you along your career path. They’re an ear to listen, a person to bounce ideas off of, someone who can provide direction, and someone who’s not afraid to tell you what you don’t want to hear. Career coaches will hurt your feelings to help you identify those development needs in your career. But how do you know if you need one? Here are a few of ways to determine if you need a Career Coach
You’re searching for a job.
This first one seems so obvious but you’d be surprised how many people don’t hire someone to assist them throughout the job searching process. Perhaps you find yourself downsized unexpectedly, perhaps you are simply looking for a company that will treat you better, or perhaps you’ve just finished grad school need help landing that first job. No matter the reason for your job search, it’s important to have an expert walk you through the process. Sure you can write a resume, post it online, and apply for dozens of jobs every day hoping for the best but is that the most effective way to spend your time? A Career Coach will help you identify your network, build a portfolio of work, help you understand how to showcase your accomplishments, and how to ace the interview. They will help you streamline the process and help you focus on your target market rather than wasting your time working on people and services that won’t benefit you.
You’re unhappy in your job.
You’re not looking for a career change but you’re unhappy at work and can’t figure out why. The people you work with are nice but for some reason you’re not as in love with it as you once were. A Career Coach will help you determine what’s missing and help you decide what to do about it. Perhaps it’s a matter of finding a creative outlet or hobby outside of work. Perhaps it’s time to talk to your boss about taking on new projects. A career coach can help you build a strategy to find happiness again without necessarily changing jobs.
You’re looking to advance with your current employer
Advancing in your current company should be easy. After all, you have been exceeding your goals and never missed a day so management should automatically promote you. Right? Wrong! Some of the best employees are often overlooked by management because they’ve not made themselves stand out or because they didn’t prepare for the interview the way they would have if they were interviewing with another company. A Career Coach can help you stand out at work and prepare for internal interviews.
You haven’t decided what you want to be when you grow up
Unless you’ve decided to never grow up and live at home in your parents’ basement, you’ll eventually need to determine a path for your career. That path can, and almost always does, change over time but having a plan in place will certainly make a difference in your career potential (and in your paycheck). A strong Career Coach will work with you to determine what you like to do, what your passion is, and whether or not that should be your career.
You know it’s time for a change.
If you’re going to work every day secretly hoping you’ll be fired today, chances are it’s time for a change. Maybe you’re not hoping to get fired but your current job has lost all of it’s appeal and you see no opportunity for advancement. A career coach and walk you through the steps necessary to make positive professional changes. Together you’ll develop a strategy that will put you on a path for success.
There’s an old saying, “If you don’t know where you’re headed, any road will lead you there.” A great Career Coach will not only help you determine the destination but will help you map out the journey too.