April 29, 2011

Why I Chose Coaching

Life is about choices. We can't control what happens to us, but we can choose how to respond.

11 years ago, a supervisor asked me the day after I was hired, "Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?" My response, "Not here." I said that because I always dreamed of owning a business; I just wasn't sure what kind of business. Let me share with you how I came to my decision of being a coach.

"Client" Seat - I experienced coaching first as a client. Jay (my coach) met with me weekly or bi-monthly for about a year and a half. During our conversations, I loved how the focus was on my goals, my pace and my agenda. He listened, gave suggestions, but ultimately it was up to me to accomplish my goals. Similar to having a personal trainer, but for my mind. Towards the end of our professional relationship, I asked Jay what I needed to do to become a coach.

StrengthsFinder - Leadership was a hobby before it became part of my career. I decided to go back to school in 2005 to get a Masters in Organizational Leadership. Through the process, I met Dave, a classmate, who was getting certified in the StrengthsFinder assessment and part of his requirements was to take 10 people through the test and discuss their results. A year later I liked the assessment so much I got certified in it and to this day it's the only test I give to all my clients. Knowing my top 5 strengths affirmed that coaching was the perfect "fit" for me.

At the Core - A coach is more of who I am, rather than what I do. My job title can change, but I'll always coach people. I'm not a fan of job descriptions because they put people in a box. Why not create a role based on someone's strengths? When I coach someone one-on-one I'm at my best. Coaching is my sweet spot. I look back on my past and realize I've been coaching others from an early age. I just didn't know it was called coaching. I'm very fortunate to have found my ideal career. Coaching is just an extension of who I am.

Based on my faith, I believe everyone was made to do something special. Your career is a mixture of passions, strengths and experiences. What were you born to do?

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