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7 Signs You’re Not Ready To Hire A Career Coach

Written by: Thomi Seche, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


Hiring a career coach is a popular move for many professionals. It can be a great way to get objective feedback, explore options, and make a game plan. But for some people, it isn’t the right approach or just not the right time. You can figure out what is best for you by learning the signs and symptoms.

7 signs hiring a career coach may not be your best decision

1. You are looking for a rule book

It’s easier to fix a tire or write a good resume by following a set of rules. In a perfect world of work, you might be looking for a crisp, clear rule book. You’d scour it cover to cover to know exactly what to do next. The problem is best career move is not outlined in a book. The ‘do-this, not-that’ approach might be perfect for exercise tips or shedding a few pounds. But creating a fulfilling career is very personal. There’s no ready-made solution. Instead of looking for a rule book, work with a career coach. This helps you discover your answers — by looking into your heart, passion, and spirit.

2. You’re looking for an absolute authority

You might be longing for an absolute authority. As children, we often looked to parents and teachers for answers. We sought out wise people to guide us to make good decisions. However, as adults, it’s now up to you. You are your authority. When you are listening to your real truth, you’ll discover the best solutions. Instead of looking to an external authority, look inwards. Working with a coach is about looking inside for your truth.

3. You’re looking for an instant fix

Instant is fun when you’re making a matcha latte. But for career choices, you’re looking for a long-term solution. You want a place to apply your creativity, passion, and skills. Instant seems attractive because you’ve probably had it up to your eyeballs with settling for an unrewarding job. You want to work where you’re paid what you deserve, are respected, and have flexible work options. The problem with instant is that you could listen to people who are instant-sales people. An ethical career coach will not promise you an instant fix. Instead, he or she will challenge you to do inner work. The result? You’ll have more confidence to go for what can truly make you feel happy at work.

4. You believe, “if it ain’t broke…don’t fix it”

If your life philosophy is to ‘grin and bear it’ you may not be open to the challenges of making a career move. If your approach is to hunker down, avoid conflict, and minimize risk, working with a career coach may not be your best move. The problem is that you tolerate difficult working conditions. Little concessions can mount up day by day: working extra hours, not being paid what you deserve, and not having any room to grow.

According to Pew Research, the top reasons people are quitting are low pay, no opportunity for advancement, and being disrespected. Does this ring true for you? At the same time, you are missing out on working in a positive environment. You could be in a new position where your skills are valued, the pay is better, and there’s unlimited opportunity to grow. You could be living your values such as having a more balanced work-home life.

5. You think the problem will go away on its own

If you are in an unsatisfying career, you might secretly believe that the problem will go away on its own. Maybe a co-worker drives you nuts — and you heard he is quitting soon. Perhaps it’s a micromanaging boss who makes you feel demoralized and frustrated. If you can just hold out, she seems keen on leaving to run a new department.

You may be waiting for the problem to go away — when people move on, regimes change, and corporate culture evolves. It is possible that if you hold your breath long enough, you may come up for fresh air. But, how likely is it? In the meantime, it’s vital to think about taking care of your health and well-being. Are the current situations/people a source of stress, worry, or turmoil? Are you noticing that you can’t relax, sleep, or feel at ease? Talking with a career coach helps you evaluate if waiting it out is the path to success.

6. You believe your employer should provide coaching

Many people have the idea that their employer should provide career coaching. It makes sense. Progressive companies offer career coaching, management, and training to benefit their employees. Personal development is in an employer’s best interest.

However, many companies do not provide career coaching. They may not have the resources or the strategic initiative. Some companies provide these resources to serve organizational interests. They want to promote internally, plan for future expansion, and capitalize on succession planning. Your employer may not have the same goals and objectives, even if they do offer career coaching.

To explore your interests, development, and passion — is up to you. Even if your employer should do something different, if you’re exhausted and experiencing burnout —it’s your body, mind, and health at stake. Are you sure that waiting and being right is your best move? Talking with an objective career coach is confidential, private, and free from any company agenda.

7. You have trouble listening to feedback

Feedback has a bad rap for some people. It may be that you’ve heard the word ‘feedback’ but what you got were perfectionistic comments filled with criticism and judgment. It’s no wonder you have trouble listening to feedback with an open mind. Learning to listen is something that you can learn to do. Listening is a skill. A career coach has your best interests at heart. He or she will ask open questions—and listen to your answers. You’ll have a chance to listen and stay open to new approaches.

Career courage: Give this a go

Take a moment to write, draw, or sketch your ideas. Use a creative approach to get an overview of where you are and what you are thinking about. Sometimes, switching gears like drawing a map or painting can give you a new perspective. This kind of creative courage can spell out your own answers—and you can connect the dots. Are you feeling fed up, frustrated, or demoralized at work? Are you wanting to figure out your best next step? By working with a coach, you can dive into fresh ideas, actions, and plans for career success. If you’ve been noticing these signs, working with a career coach may not be your best choice. However, if you are ready to get some breathing room from old perspectives, you may find that talking with a career coach is a great place to start.

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Thomi Seche, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Thomi Seche M.A., was born in a small town in Bavaria. Received a Masters's Degree in Fine Arts at the Academy in Munich. He was a monk for 8 years in India, practicing and studying meditation. He practiced martial arts and received two black belts.

The biggest challenge from a small cell in India was coming to America and learning to live in the USA, from the ground up. From driving cabs to driving big rigs, he became a proud Long Haul Trucker. After 2 years, he started his own training and facilitation business based out of San Francisco. For over 18 years Thomi coached CEOs in transition, facilitated high-level team meetings, and was the trusted ear to executive clients.

Leaving the corporate environment, he started 2 start-ups. And yes, one tanked; and one he exited. He is an accomplished writer, his first book "The Authentic Message" became the bible for many corporate communicators. His new book "Being Brave," reveals the steps he took to overcome prejudice and live courageously. In essence, his motto is: "Make it a life worth living." To talk to him, ask him anything, visit this link



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