Five reasons you might want to consider a career coach.

We have all heard the latest news:  "Unemployment is down and job creation is up"

Well, tell that to the thousands who are still seeking work. Just this weekend I spoke with several individuals who speak a different truth.  One young man shared his story of finally finding a job 2000 miles away from where he lived and the excitement he felt.  However, just 6 months later the company was bought out and he is currently fearing his job will be eliminated.  Then there was a woman who told me her company was growing and she is looking to hire 2 new individuals.  Now that sounds great except she continued to share that one position received almost 400 resumes and the second one received over 60. I am not an expert on the US job market but I do know there are just few too many jobs available to meet the growing demand for employment.  And the few jobs that are becoming available barely pay a wage that covers living expenses.  

So how does a career coach change the job market? Simple answer, they don't,

But here’s what a good career coach can do.

  1. They can help you stand out above all other applicants. Within just a few sessions a career coach can evaluate the strength of your resume, conduct a mock interview, identify your strengths and your weakness and offer a strategic growth and improvement plan putting you at the head of the pack. 
  2. Assess your core values and align them with your career and potential employer. Too many times people accept a job with a company that "thinks" differently than they do resulting in frustration, stress, and dissatisfaction. The results of this mismatch can be seen in health problems, relationship struggles, emotional pain, and eventually end up in unemployed … again.  
  3. Improve job success rate. The call finally comes in from HR and you got the job.  Time to celebrate!  But wait - the real work is just beginning. The statistics show that over 40% of executive level new job hires fail in their first 12 months.  A coach can help you create a successful 30, 60, 90 day plan and equips you to hit the ground running.  A well designed plan will move you from a value consumed point (where you take up more resources than you contribute) to a break-even contribution level at a faster speed increasing your visibility to the leadership team and resulting in job security.
  4. Prepare you for the promotion. If you are one of the fortunate ones who have a great career with a great company but want to rise within the organization, a career coach can be your best advocate. You've heard the saying "You don't know what you don't know". This never rings more true than with individuals trying and trying to get the next promotion but missing the mark. It is normal to be blinded by our own assumptions and expectations.  In fact, sometimes what we see as our strengths can attack us from behind and become our biggest weakness.  When we fail to recognize this (and many of us do) we keep ourselves from being the 1st choice.  A trained career coach can help assess the things you don't know and help you turn the "don't knows" into your core competencies. 
  5. Start your own company.  If you are at the point where you no longer want to put your future in the hands of others and you desire to create your own business - I strongly advise you to seek out a qualified career coach. In this situation your career coach should have experience in start-up companies.  They can walk you through a marketable business plan from raising capital to the launch.  Some coaches can tell you "been there, done that" but before hiring one make certain they can say "been there, done that, and succeeded". 

For many of us it can be tough to admit we could use someone's help, especially if we've created our own success in the past. I recently coached an individual who spent 18 months searching for a job. He had many years of success under his belt and felt no need for a career coach.  Through the coaxing of his spouse, he reached out to me and within a month he landed a top paying executive job.  

The moral of this story is - You don't know what you don't know but don't be afraid to ask someone who may help you see what you can’t see so you can find your way to the career of your dreams.

It is worth the investment.