Coaching, scam or legit?
Such a question could be the subject of a LinkedIn survey! In fact, people’s perception of coaching has been on my mind for some time, more particularly since I have watched the movie Back to Mom’s. In that movie, Stéphanie Mazerin, played by Alexandra Lamy, loses her job as a partner in an architectural firm. She goes to a Job Centre, where she is told that it will be very difficult for her to find work because of her age, qualifications, family status, etc. The only two options she is presented with are: either accept a day job or become a coach.
Now, that got me puzzled! As the Job Centre makes this second suggestion to Stéphanie, he explains that many jobless people get into coaching nowadays, thinking they can show others how to succeed after having failed everything themselves. This caricature may seem farfetched, but to what extent can it really be?
With famous celebrities and high-flying executives touting the benefits of coaching, there is no wonder that so many people are jumping on the coaching bandwagon with high expectations and hiring coaches to take them to the next level. However, it is not the coach’s role to tell you how to live your life on the grounds that he is more enlightened and better than you, as would think the job centre employee in the movie. A coach is simply someone who understands the ‘game’ you are playing and helps you open your mind. In other terms, he is there to enable you to see things from a different perspective, in another light, or from an alternative point of view.
I am not going to pretend that there are no shenanigans in the coaching industry. Is there such thing as a scam-free industry anyway? However, what most people get wrong is that spending a couple of hours each month with a coach is not enough to achieve drastic life changes.
I have witnessed people paying good money to work with experienced coaches, only to get out of it without any noticeable change. The coach then becomes an easy target. However, when you look deeper into it, you will find that the reasons of their lack of results have less to do with their coach, and more with their inaction or lack of responsibility. So, prior to getting a coach, you must consider that “nothing in your life will change unless you do!”
Be kind to yourself…
About the coach
My perspective is built on a more positive view of human nature. I see individuals as driven to reach their potential. There is nothing wrong with wanting to fix one’s weaknesses, and in fact it should be the ultimate goal of our lives. But I believe that this is not where personal development should start.