Here is a very quick story to show you the power of coaching….even when you aren't a subject matter expert in the client's area of expertise:
I was coaching a multi-millionaire who made his fortune in commercial real estate and hotels. He's one of those extraordinary entrepreneurs who has made a fortune despite never having graduated from high school.
Anyway, on this day he was unusually distracted and distressed. He explained that he was involved in a deal as a minority shareholder, and he was being pushed by the majority shareholders to invest lots of money in a questionable deal.
He didn't want to do it, but felt stuck due to the shareholder agreement. He was frustrated, confused about how to proceed, and scared about the level of risk he might have to take on.
As he told me about his situation, I quickly realized that I was in over my head in terms of understanding the terminology and strategies involved in investing in this kind of property. After all, I'm a coach, not a big-time hotel and shopping mall investor.
However, what is so great about coaching is that my limited subject expertise didn't matter. In fact, it may have helped! It allowed me to take him in new directions and step back to evaluate the issues in new ways.
I asked him a series of questions about how he evaluated deals, how he could get more influence among shareholders, what he saw as possible solutions, how he evaluated each alternative, what information he still needed to collect, the best possible upside, the worst possible downside, how to manage the downside, and so on. By listening to his answers, the questions that I needed to ask came naturally.
By the end of the conversation he had much greater clarity about what to do and, equally important, felt more relaxed and grounded than he had in a while. He even texted me later on that day to thank me for the session, telling me he felt much better.
I've been coaching for two decades now, but it is always fantastic to witness the power and value that effective coaching provides.
Of course, it doesn't hurt to be a subject-matter expert (especially to build credibility while developing business), but the best coaching provides new ways of thinking about and resolving challenges.
At the Center for Executive Coaching, we teach you the processes, methodologies, and conversations you can use to help clients — no matter how specialized or technical — gain clarity and move forward with more power for better results.
If you are a coach, consultant, trainer, speaker, or professional who wants to deepen your tools; if you are an executive or leader looking for an encore career; or if you are a therapist or clinician seeking to add coaching to your services — then feel free to call me anytime at 941-539-9623 to see if there is a fit.
Founder and Director
Center for Executive Coaching
Co-Author: Guerrilla Marketing for Coaches
Personal Cell: 941-539-9623