What to look for in an Executive Coach

What to look for in an Executive Coach
March 2, 2021 Linda Murray

In the past, professional development at Executive level has been overlooked and undervalued. The attitude seemed to be that because Execs were already at the top, they didn’t need more skills. Fortunately, that attitude has changed. These days we know that personal and professional development is an essential and ongoing process. 

Why Executives still need a coach.

No matter where you are in your career, you’ll benefit from coaching.

  • A coach will help you gain clarity about your needs, plans and career future.
  • You’ll be challenged. A coach won’t let you make excuses to yourself. They’re not just sounding boards; they listen and call you on your weaknesses, vagueness, and failures (in a supportive way!).
  • A coach will support and encourage you, reminding you of your successes and strengths.
  • A coach will see opportunities that you might overlook and help you see your career from a different perspective.

What you should look for before choosing your executive coach.

  1. Solid organisational experience. Your coach should have proven experience at your level and at the level you aspire to. She should also have functional experience in the business world so she’s aware of the pressures and constraints on you, as well as the opportunities out there.
  2. Solid coaching experience. Coaching is a skill. Check the coach’s area of expertise and look for a track record of results. I would suggest at least 10 years experience. I also recommend asking for references and testimonials. If that feels a bit confronting, have a look at their Recommendations on LinkedIn.
  3. Qualifications. What qualifications does the coach have and how does she keep her skills and knowledge stay up to date?
  4. The coaching relationship will only work if there’s a connection between you. You need to relate both personally and professionally. Coaching is based on communication, trust, confidence, and confidentiality. Does the coach listen to you? Do you feel understood? If you’re not comfortable together, you’ve chosen the wrong coach.
  5. No lock-in contracts. I think lock-in contracts are for coaches who aren’t confident in their abilities. When you aren’t tied down, you have the freedom to try out the coach and experience her approach. You have time to decide if the relationship is comfortable and the freedom to leave if you need to. If the chemistry isn’t right, you’re not likely to get the results you want no matter how long you work together.

What can Linda Murray offer as an executive coach?

Linda draws on 2 decades of experience in business, working for others and for herself. She built her first successful and saleable business in her early 20s, growing her business to a team of 25 bookkeepers and financial controllers. She has an in-depth understanding of the pressures and constraints that affect commercial success.

Linda has 14 years’ experience as a coach, and it is backed with sound professional qualifications including a Master’s in Business Coaching (Distinction) and a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology, Philosophy). She is a fully accredited professional coach.

There is no lock-in contract when  working with Linda. She understands how important it is to be confident and comfortable with your coaching relationship. Linda believes that if the relationship works, you don’t need to be tied down. You’ll stay because you get results.

If you’re considering working with an Executive coach, have a chat with Linda. She’ll happily answer any questions you have.

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