OVERVIEW of COACHING AND MENTORING
Why a Life Coach/Mentor?
Everybody needs a coach. Eric Schmidt (Former Google CEO)
Just as many find it easier to maintain exercise habits with a personal trainer, individuals find that partnering with a life coach/mentor helps them: gain clarity and perspective on their lives and careers, develop new skills, take risks, maintain motivation, adjust focus and do everything necessary to set and move toward achievement of their important personal and professional goals.
Role of a Life Coach/Mentor
A life coach/mentor is a professional who counsels, encourages and helps individuals transform their lives and careers from where they are to where they desire to be. A life coach/mentor seeks to equip and empower the client to deal with and solve problems, make decisions, establish priorities, set and reach goals, possess better and new skills and change behavior.
The heart of life coaching/mentoring is providing a supportive relationship with the client that can be the cornerstone of personal and professional growth. In that relationship, a coach/mentor collaborates with and facilitates client learning by helping a client identify and achieve future goals through various methods, including: assessment, discovery, reflection, goal-setting and strategic action.
While each of the important people in a person’s life plays a significant role, a life coach/mentor provides very unique value by helping clients see themselves and identify their desires, talents and their God-given potential apart from the views and opinions of other people. This frees them to more easily figure out where they are, what their passions and giftings are, what they would like to do with their lives and careers and which path (s) holds the greatest promise for pursuing their dreams and being a genuine difference-maker who leads a truly fulfilling and significant life.
Our clients see us as a wise, trusted and senior figure in terms of experience and thus, an ideal adviser and sounding board, refiner and developer of greater and better skills and help in more quickly reaching their short and long term goals.
Focus of Life Coaching/Mentoring
Unlike therapists and other professionals who focus primarily on the past, while life coaches and mentors take the past into consideration, they center their attention on the present and future. Their coaching and mentoring focuses on helping clients thrive in the present and create a vision and action plan for the future that becomes their guide for achieving their full potential. Life coaches/mentors assume that the client is the one with the power to choose how they go about their life and therefore, encourage them to come up with their own answers and plans. The best coach/mentor suggests adopting a clean slate approach to whatever the coaching category is and leads the client to answer relevant questions like: What are the things that light them up? What makes them tick? In a nutshell, a life coach/mentor challenges and helps their client constantly stretch the boundaries of their comfort zone and leads and encourages them as the client seeks to acclimate to unfamiliar territory and develop new skills. And, the life coach/mentor serves the client as an accountability agent and gently pushes them to kick it up a notch and take risks.
Dimensions of Coaching/Mentoring
The reality is we are a complex blend of intertwined life-dimensions —spirituality, family, career, finances, health, social life, etc. — and personal and professional growth are never about a single slice of life. A life coach/mentor helps their client improve specific areas. They help their client take a step back and look at their entire self, not just the parts that demand their immediate attention.
Among many possibilities, life coaching/mentoring services may include:
Discovering Purpose and Calling;
Achieving Life Balance;
Enhancing Emotional Intelligence;
Improving Mental and Emotional Health;
Better Time Management;
Setting and Maintaining Goals and Priorities;
Spiritual Guidance; and
Family, Parenting and Financial Wisdom.
Audience, Service Delivery and Cost
The audience for life coaching/mentoring services is anyone seeking personal and/or professional development and advancement. The services can be delivered on demand or scheduled and done so in person or via remote methods such as telephone, text, email and skype or other broadcast methods. Formats include 1 to 1 and group coaching sessions that could include a homogeneous mix of peers or a blend of leaders and followers. Session length typically ranges from an hour up to a work day. The retainer fee for coaching/mentoring services is tailored based on such factors as topics selected, session length and frequency and in the case of organizations, group size.
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Organizational Value of Life Coaching/Mentoring
A research study looked at the behavioral change, organizational outcomes and return on investment from coaching/mentoring. The study proposed that coaching/mentoring translates into action, which translates into organizational impact, which impact can be quantified and maximized. Overall the study showed a 5.7 times return on the initial investment in coaching/mentoring. Those receiving coaching/mentoring services reported the following benefits as tangible organizational impacts:
* Greater Productivity
* Enhanced Quality of Services
* Increased Organizational Strength
* Improved Customer Service
* Reduced Customer Complaints
* Increased Retention
* Cost Reductions
* Better Bottom Line Profitability
* Greater Top Line Revenue
* Reduced Turnover.
Those receiving coaching/mentoring also reported intangible organizational impact benefits via improved:
* Relationships with direct reports
* Relationships with immediate supervisors
* Relationships with peers
* Job satisfaction
* Conflict reduction
* Organizational commitment
* Relationships with clients.
This study, its outcomes and our years of experience how staff well-being is an increasingly relevant and necessary consideration in the modern workplace. It is a hugely significant aspect of on-the-job efficiency and productivity.
From organizational ownership, leadership and management perspectives, employee well-being is a major factor in qualitative and quantitative performance and therefore, business profitability and longevity. In contrast to the outcomes in the study and routinely seen in our experiences with organizations of all sizes, it is an established fact that when an employee’s well-being reduces, so does their work performance and effectiveness. Job pressures involving deadlines, responsibilities, task complexity, challenge, relationships, supervision, etc., can all seriously reduce well-being, especially if the individuals and organization fail to recognize and deal with the risks. Across a team or entire organization, if staff well-being is undermined, many key performance factors can turn negative. For example:
Increased mistakes and errors;
Conflict (with colleagues and up-line/downline management/subordinates);
Grievance and disciplinary incidents;
Sickness and absenteeism;
Low morale and negative atmosphere;
Poor customer services and quality;
Resignations and job terminations (causing increased turnover and elevated recruiting and training costs);
Poor employer reputation among staff, customers, and potential prospects and new recruits.
Thus, understanding risks of stress and well-being to the individual and organization is an increasingly important employer responsibility. And as we have seen in our vast experience and as shown in the study, life coaching/mentoring is a very successful means of addressing the risks. This is due in no small part to our unique approach...digging deeper to identify and address the underlying beliefs and suppressed emotions that are unconsciously sabotaging personal, marriage, family and on the job relationships, productivity and effectiveness
Bottom-line, life coaching/mentoring is a win, win…giving employees access to an independent sounding board and counselor, while assuring an employer a trusted source who guides employees according to sound values and wise life principles that translate to quantitative and qualitative personal and organizational benefits.
Note: Study conducted by McGovern, Lindemann, Vergara, Murphy, Barker and Warrenfeltz in collaboration with Manchester, Inc. To view the full report, click here: http://www.evolve-coaching.com/uploads/ManchesterReview_Maximizing_Impactof_Exec_Coaching.pdf