If you’re asking yourself whether you should hire a career coach, you’ve landed in the right spot. In this article, I share signs you’re ready to hire a coach. I also explain when you might want to hold off on the process.
3 Times To Hire A Career Coach
While only you can answer the question, “Should I hire a career coach?” the following are three signs it might make sense to invest in one:
1. You feel stuck in your job search.
As a career coach, “I feel stuck” is one of the most common phrases I hear when speaking with job seekers. They’re often feeling overwhelmed with one or more of the following aspects of the job search and/or their career:
- Identifying target companies
- Clarifying potential career paths
- Updating their resume
- Optimizing their LinkedIn profile
- Identifying and owning their fabulousness
- Securing job interviews
- Landing interviews but no offers
- Negotiating their salary and total compensation package
If you find yourself in a similar boat, it might be time to hire a career coach, or at least schedule a discovery call with one. Speaking of feeling stuck, many of the job seekers I speak with are also navigating some sort of change, which I’ll cover in the next point in this list.
2. You’re navigating change.
Change can exacerbate feelings of “stuckness” and overwhelm. Here are some of the most common changes the people I speak with are navigating – or thinking about navigating – when they reach out to me:
- Switching job functions or trying to break into a new industry
- Looking for their next role after being laid off from their job
- Returning to work after a gap in employment
- Embarking on their first manager, vice president, or C-suite role
If the ‘Great Resignation’ taught us anything, it’s that change is possible, so long as you keep your end goal in mind. Consequently, if you find yourself on the brink of a career change, you may wish to partner with a career coach to support you in weighing your options, developing a strategic plan, and remaining accountable to yourself and your goals.
3. You’re struggling with confidence.
Overcoming “stuckness” and navigating change can bring about increased anxiety and feelings of Imposter Syndrome. And while it’s normal to feel doubt and uncertainty at some points in your career, working with a career coach can help you manage and mitigate these feelings.
Increased confidence, which is often a byproduct of greater clarity, is one of the most profound outcomes of partnering with a career coach. Additional benefits of coaching can include, but are not limited to, gaining greater self-awareness, expanding your network, bolstering your communication abilities, strengthening your interview skills, and of course, landing a new job.
3 Times To Not Hire A Career Coach
While hiring a coach can make sense in certain situations, there are also cases where you may want to hold off on investing in one until you’re fully ready to do the work.
1. You’re looking for a “quick fix.”
For starters, working with a career coach is a significant investment of time, both in and beyond the sessions. If you’re short on time, a coach might not be the best fit for you, as change requires time and energy on your part.
2. You want someone to do the work for you.
Speaking of which, while coaches can provide you with guidance, support, and direction, they can’t do the work for you. It’s akin to working out. You can’t expect a personal trainer to do the exercising for you. You show up, put in the effort, and give it your all. You must also be open to receiving feedback.
3. You don’t have the mental bandwidth.
Working with a coach requires significant energy and effort, particularly if you’ve been stuck for a while. You’ve got to be realistic with yourself and ask whether you can honestly commit the mental energy needed to achieve lasting change in your career and life. The choice is yours.
Final Notes On Hiring A Career Coach
It’s ultimately up to you whether to hire a career coach. If you do decide to work with one, know that all career coaches are not created equal. I’ve authored a number of articles to help you find a career coach online, avoid online coaching scams, and understand the cost of career coaching.
On a final note, please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have questions during your search for a career coach. You’ve got this!