Does coaching work?
It depends; on the coach, the coachee, the expectations and the process.
Most top producing agents have a personal advisor or trainer of some type whether it be a coach, consultant or mentor.
In real estate we tend to call them all coaches but there are significant differences in what individual coaches deliver to their clients.
If you’ve never had a coach, you are likely curious about it. If you have a coach, you may be curious about what other coaches offer.
I have had many coaches, consultants and mentors over the past 30 years. Many were formal relationships while some were more casual and organic. What I’ve learned is that for coaching to be valuable, it must be a relationship which shares many elements with traditional relationships. Mutual respect, trust and alignment of expectations are all critical for success. You should never feel fear, resistance or apprehension about your coaching conversations.
One on one coaching, or consulting is expensive. When it is good, it is worth every penny and more. I pay my coach a huge amount of money and I cannot imagine navigating my business decisions without him. But much of what is being passed off as coaching may not be worth the money you pay.
Coaching is an unregulated field and anyone can hang up a shingle so it’s caveat emptor (buyer beware).
Most coaching companies will offer you a no cost consultation. This should be with the specific coach that you will be working with as this is the personal relationship that matters. I also believe this coaching consultation should actually be a coaching call that offers you some valuable information about your business so you can get a taste of what it will be like once you are committed.
What should it be like? That depends on what you are needing from the coaching relationship. Are you in need of a coach, consultant or mentor or do you need help reaching your full potential?
Let’s look at the definition of these different forms of advisors:
The International Coaching Federation (ICF): defines coaching as partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.
Merriam Webster: a private teacher who gives someone lessons in a particular subject
Merriam Webster: a person who gives professional advice or services for a fee
Wikipedia: is a professional who provides professional or expert advice
From dictionary.com: a wise and trusted counselor or teacher.
Merriam Webster: someone who teaches or gives help and advice to a less experienced and often younger person
Harvey Spector and Mike Ross have a classic mentor relationship. Harvey, the mentor brings experience and opportunity to the relationship while Mike, the mentee, brings fresh approaches, respect and a willingness to work hard. Mentors are traditionally volunteers and this makes finding a good one extremely rare. Coaches are in part filling this void in the professional world.
If you are thinking about coaching, take the time to get it right. It’s not unreasonable to have a coaching consultation with a number of different coaches. Choose a coach who doesn’t tie you in to a long term contract. A good coach wants the best for you, even if that means not continuing with the coaching. Recognize that finding the right coach could be the most valuable investment you ever make.