The world and society
are evolving, and as such the opportunities for coaching are increasing. While
there are hundreds of trends, there are 10 that are most relevant to the
increasing demand for coaching in the world, and we share details on
The following trends represent
the ways society is evolving, and will continue to evolve over the next
Each of these trends has a direct impact on society's awareness of and
need for coaching. Which of these trends will you and your
coaching practice be prepared for? One? Three? All?
Common interest communities will tend to define who a person is and what
their opportunities are.
As people gather with
those with common interests, they will define themselves less by race,
nationality, or other traditional measures. Also, as they become part of
larger networks, opportunities for work, growth, learning, or connection
will come more from those common interest communities than more
traditional means, such as classified ads.. What's the connection with
are not just comprised of a common interest, but they also have a
common purpose. Coaching can help them fulfill their purpose, rather
than the community being based solely around activity.
spend more time in these common interest communities, and will want to
re-design their lives around the communities, not work. Coaching will
serve as a common denominator, or networking resources for these
lives could be comprised of a lot of these communities, and part of
coaching would be to help them identify the 10 or 20 communities they
want to be a part of.
With so many options available, coaching will be needed to
help people create a balance and a strong sense of self.
With an increase in common interest groups, there will be a
higher demand placed on
2. Work and play are converging.
people in the US are often criticized for working so hard, there is a
trend in which people are wanting what they do for work to merge with
what they do for play. There are now dozens of books on the market
showing how consumption isn't the ultimate goal of working and earning
money. People are getting more concerned about overall balance, health,
and long-term viability than in short-term pleasure. The primary goal
of a job as being "earning money for play" is changing, as people
realize how much time and energy is spent at work. They're wanting work
to be as much a part of the enjoyment of life as outside of work. How
this increases the demand for coaching:
Our culture doesn't know how to play. Coaches can demonstrate, set a
model for, and help clients understand how to blend work and play.
Coaches will help people identify what they really want out of life, and
learn to create a balance, budget for the things they really need, and
set boundaries around work and play that work for them.
People may need
some help from a career coach to make the transition to a job which is
more personally satisfying, rather than merely about money.
will want to re-invent and get strategies that a coach can provide about
the way their job is being performed today. Companies are doing this
now, and it's going to simply increase over time.
going to be interested in finding new skill sets to make their job more
Women are taking more leadership roles in the workplace.
Women are becoming
more CEOs, and having more leadership in government. Women are
moving into higher levels of management, and bringing with them their
sense and style of living. How this increases the demand for coaching:
more of a strength and collaborative-based way of thinking than men.
Rather than push their way through obstacles with brute force (and often
alone), they'll seek outside and collaborative assistance.
generally have an increased sensitivity to quality of life issues. They
will be more concerned with the quality of life of their employees.
of communication will improve with women leading corporations, and the
desire for improved communication, which leads to the need for
have to adapt to the changes, so there will be an increased need for
There will be an increased need for coaching both men and
women on different ways to respond in the work place, especially with
regards to stress and competition.
are entering the MBA programs right now, and there is an increased
emphasis on teaching coaching skills in the colleges. This carries over
to bringing coaching with them into the corporations.
of technology with creativity.
Technology is allowing more creativity with more people. Individuals
who considered themselves "un-artistic" because they couldn't draw or
paint, are seeing their creativity blossom through the use of
technology, such as Photoshop. Web sites, email, and all forms of
technology are unleashing greater amounts of creativity. How this
Coaches can become experts in the use of technology as a tool for
creativity, helping many people tap into their own creative energy.
Technology is allowing coaches to reach people in more creative ways,
providing coaching through technology, rather than through face-to-face
As more people start home-based businesses, coaches can help with the
transition by showing them how to use technology to their best
Individuality is super-rewarded.
While this hasn't been
true historically in Europe or Japan, individuality has been rewarded in
the United States in varying capacities. Experimentation and creativity
have been the driving forces of the 20th and 21st centuries. Even while
the largest corporations are getting larger, the number of small,
independent, entrepreneurial companies is increasing. In light of the
recent scandals, it is becoming apparent that bigger isn't the key. The
August, 2002 issue of Fast Company magazine (http://www.fastcompany.com)
demonstrates how poorly the bigger companies have performed. The best,
brightest, and most innovative people are leaving, forming their own
companies. How this increases the demand for coaching:
the freedom to express themselves and create. Coaching fits right in
with the development of creativity.
free-thinking society will naturally increase the demand for assistance
in maintaining necessary systems in the midst of increased freedom.
want more coaching to help them identify and utilize their unique
qualities, so that they, too can be super-rewarded for individual
to define success on their own terms, and once they've made that
transition, they're going to find the idea of personal evolution really
Want to learn more?
More details on all ten universal trends is available as a School of
click here if you are an SOC member (you'll need your generic
username and password to get in).
Or, consider attending
the Future of Coaching Conference in San Francisco coming up in May
2003. More details below.
And...here are just
the titles of five additional trends:
Dis-intermediation - direct to the
self-care and simplicity movement.
conceptually, rather than just practically or via self-referencing.
© 2003 by the School of
Coaching. Reproduction permitted with full attribution.