I posted a question : "Why Does a Veteran Coach need a Coach?" to a Coach Community. And I received encouraging and good responses from many. Here are some example. At the end of this article, I give my own thinking and reflection on this subject.
Being on the "receiving end" of coaching as well as the "sending end" can give you a lot of insight. Besides, why would you offer a service to someone you wouldn't be willing to accept yourself?
From Coach #1, eMail-Ruth H. Ledesma
You have ask a great question and one that so many newer coaches ask and are really surprised to discover that the coaches that are the most experienced and successful also have their own coach. The first reason for me is that I need and deserve a coach--that's why I have two coaches. I really believe in the power of coaching and thus I want to continue to experience the wonderful continuous growth achieved through the coaching relationship and process. I am committed to personal growth and development and to be the very best that I can be. Also, as a coach telling others about how wonderful and powerful coaching is and what it can do for them, how could I be in integrity if I did not personally have a coach. What message would that send to my prospect? As we watched the olympics recently, I was touched by how skilled and successful every athlete that competed was and yet every one of them had a coach. And I am sure every gold medal winner stills has a coach because they want to continue to be the best that they can be in their area of specialty---just as I do in mine. And isn't life more challenging and rewarding than sports? It is also for me an investment for my clients because I learn so much from the guidance of my coach(s) that I am able to pass along. Show me a "veteran coach" that is not doing well and I will show you someone who does not have a coach, show me a "veteran coach" that is not growing and again I will show you a veteran coach that does not have a coach. No matter how successful I am or how veteran of a coach I become, I will always have my coach or coaches. I believe we all need a coach or at least deserve a coach. Warmly,
From Coach #2, eMail-Winston Connor
Great discussion on why a coach needs a coach!
On a mundane level, in my experience, the more successful one is; the more respected one is; the more impact one has on others; the more difficult it becomes to get truely unbiased feedback about both oneself, and often even about projects one is involved with.!!! And the easier it becomes to buy into ones own hype!!! This holds good in all fields - in business and the helping professions. The more influence one wields, the more essential a coach becomes. It just makes good sense to provide oneself with at least one respected person who one can totally trust to tell the truth no matter what - can be a face saver in the long run!!! Like Jim says, its matter of integrity.
From Coach #3, eMail-Jenny Swanepoel
My Reply and My Reflection
My sincere thanks to all of you who give so much of your insights, opinions and inspirational thought on the above subject I posted.
On theory I recognise the importance of coach to even the veteran coach. Maybe it is like Professor Stephen Hawking may need Albert Einstein to be his Personal Coach. There is always another one having greater wisdom than any person.
However, I may not have really experienced the real benefit of a Coach. I remember last year, in desperation, I looked for a Coach, though at that time, the concept of coach was still not very clear to me. Hence I asked for advise, when I felt I was at a X-Road. And I posted my SOS signal in my homepage:
"At a X-Road, WHAT NEXT?"
There are many responses, some went into personal email correspondence with me, for quite a while, .. ... but to no avail. Over time, I found that I managed to breakout from that desperation. As I recall, I used the following technique : I was clear of my [Vision], I kept on practising the [Quality Loop Methodology] and seeking [Feedback] at every opportunity, with some techniques applied. i.e. equivalent to having a Coach, for ball bouncing, challenging my inner strength, exposing my own blind-spots, .....
In a way, having found a suitable Personal Coach may depend on opportunity, timing and luck. Failing which, one has to rely on oneself to pull through a difficult time, or a challenging goal. Hence I am very keen to coach my client to use such techniques for them to be self-dependent if necessary.
Some more remarks ....
You are right, ofcourse! There is no substitute for self reliance.....and I would guess that many of us who are coaches today, are coaches precisely because we found the resources INSIDE ourselves to transend our own "desperations." Perhaps the very concept of coaching has emerged out of the incredible loneliness so many of us have experienced in doing it alone!
eMail-Jenny Swanepoel,...the wind beneath your wings.....
Ever since I had talking interfaces with you, I started DOING thinking. By thinking, I found that I become more inquisitive and I can answer questions that I asked myself. Not only that, I find that I am motivated to think. I also learned that you are the first and the only one person in my life WHO GETS ME TO THINK. I want to personally let you know that I really appreciate your contribution to this aspect of personal development on my part.
The ability to think will be useful not only on the job but off the job as well. I hope to learn more from you.
Rgd.. Alah Imang, 6/3/98
No matter what we do, big thing like President of a country, or CEO, etc. or small thing like sweeping the street, .... all come from Thinking in the right framework. Once we improve the Thinking capacity of mankind, all things will fall in place properly : work, family, social life, church, politics .....etc.
You see, coaching is a funny thing :
Keep thinking with good focus and in the right direction, with ACTION LEARNING :5S, ISO 9000, Community Project, Work Process, Planning, Communication, ReEngineering, etc..etc.
Soon you should be Coach to others too ..
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By Andrew Wong, 7st March.1998
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