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New Client?  10 Places to Start your Coaching




New Dates now Open














January 14
, 2002                                                


Dear Readers,

An excerpt from the CoachVille Coach Training modules today on the topic of where to start with a new coaching client. 

Mine this list for ideas on how to progress more quickly to the heart of issues important to your clients.

Also in this issue is information about a specialty program from Career Coach Institute.  Details below.

Happy Reading,

Andrea Lee
GM, CoachVille


Feature Article
Top 10 Places to Start With a Coaching Client
Thomas J. Leonard
copyright 1998, all rights reserved.
What should you and your client focus on first when starting your coaching? Here's a list of the 10 areas that I and many other coaches start with.
1. Tolerations.
Ask the client what they are putting up with and they'll give you a list of between 5 and 500 things. In this list will be great things to focus the client on handling. When the client starts getting rid of tolerations, they'll feel like they are making progress in their life and the momentum created (because energy is freed up) will keep the client motivated, which is very important when a client is new to coaching.
2. Shoulds.
Find out what the client thinks they 'should' be doing right now, personally and professionally. Most of us have lots of shoulds, yet we don't feel we can readily toss them out, given the potential consequences. Have the client make a list of at least 10 shoulds. This educates them, and you/they will quickly find out how much of their life they are living and how much of someone else's life they are living.
3. Frustrations.
What is frustrating the client? Ask the client "What are the 5 things that are most frustrating you right now about yourself, your life, your work, or others?" Feelings are a great place to start the coaching process because when the client gets in touch (and shares) how they really feel, the truth starts to come out. And when the truth comes out, there is relief and movement. Let truth drive your client, not you.
4. Money.
Money -- or the lack of it -- is at the heart of at least 50% of a client's current problems, whether they recognize it or not. Find out how much the client makes, how much they owe, how much they are saving or debting and see if the client is willing to make some financial changes quickly. If they do so, they usually reduce stress right away and this frees them up to better benefit from your coaching.
5. Client Programs.
CoachVille has over many client programs such as a Perfect Life, Personal Evolution, Clean-Sweep.  Find out if your client likes working with this type of tool. If so, recommend one or two, or send them the collection and let them pick out the one(s) that fits for them. You can still focus them on other things, but many clients like the independent structure that these client programs provide. These programs can also help the client to discover something about themselves, so it meets the needs of the client who is into self-discovery and self-improvement.
6. Desires.
What does your client REALLY want in their personal or business life? What is the goal that they've given up on or have put off for a while, due to circumstances? When a client feels that someone (the coach) cares enough about them to encourage them to reach for what will make them the happiest, it may be all the client needs to succeed in that area. Remember, success is stressful and getting what you want is sometimes a stretch. That's why the client has hired you -- to help them get through whatever's in the way. When you help the client tap into what they most want, they get inspired and don't need constant motivation.
7. Integrity.
It's very important to find out how strong your client's integrity is. In other words, are they doing the best stuff for themselves and their body? Are they stressed out? Eating/drinking too much? Running on adrenaline? Stepping over problems? Avoiding the truth of a situation? Not taking time for themselves? Without enough integrity, whatever you help the client to achieve will eventually fade because the "container" for their life is cracked.
8. Outcomes.
Many clients know exactly what they want and they want your support to achieve it, so by all means help them reach these outcomes. You can definitely have a tight focus with the client on outcomes, but also weave in some of the other 9 of these 'starting points' into your coaching. But always get the client's permission. Some clients are very happy with a single focus of achieving outcomes, and they really don't want to work on the intangible or Personal Foundation strengthening type of stuff.
9. Strategies.
Some clients want you to help them develop a strategy or a plan so they can achieve their result in the shortest period of time, with the least stress. If the client asks you "how" they can achieve X, then you know they are asking for strategy. Sometimes, the client will ask what action steps they should take, but you may want to work with them on strategy development first. Because, with the right strategy, the steps become obvious.
10. A change or improvement.
Most clients want to change or improve something. For example, they may want to change jobs or improve a relationship. The trick is to discover if their 'change goal' is what they really want or if it is something they want to do because it will get them something else, as in "If I get a promotion, I'll be more fulfilled." As a coach, you might want to work with the client on Values first to find out what WOULD fulfill them, because a promotion may not be the ticket.
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