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Coaching for Coaches

April 11, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 204

Lately, my articles have revolved around coaching - I figured it was time to tell you: if you want to be a coach, it might be worth your time and effort (and money) to hire yourself one first.

We learn by example, right? That's a fundamental lesson we know to be true about humanity... watch any young child, and you'll see her imitating behavior until she feels as though she's as competent as she wants to be in that particular task. Adults go through the same process. We see someone doing something that we want to learn - and we practice it, until we make it our own. So, there's essentially 3 parts to the process:

  • Observe - we must watch something, in order to determine if it's something we like or don't like.
  • Practice - we take whatever we observed and repeatedly imitate it.
  • Inherit - by taking what someone else does & making it our own, it becomes less of an act and more of an art.

That process is one of the main reasons why I believe hiring yourself a coach might be a good first step if you're hoping to become one yourself. I'd even go as far as to suggest you 'shop around' a bit. Get a taste for the various types of coaching personalities, approaches and techniques that exist. You can learn what you like, determine what you don't, and try it all on for size to find your own style.

Another reason I'd suggest finding your own coach is because it will help you to empathize with your own clients. You can't know what it's like if you haven't sat on that side of the relationship. Empathy is the ability to understand how another feels, and to say it's essential to good leadership and business is an understatement. Understanding how someone feels allows you to better answer their questions, console their concerns and exceed their expectations. Empathy is your way of saying to your client, "this is about you, not me." Empathy is the antithesis to selfishness.

The final reason I recommend being coached by another before coaching others is because it's an act of humility. It's our way of showing that we're not above being helped. It's our way of saying that we don't have it all figured out. And although we'd all like to pretend we do, and sometimes we think it's to our benefit to be that way; there's something to be said about the person who's willing to say, "I'm still learning, too."

So, just think about it. A doctor is a better doctor when he understands his patient, and a teacher is a better teacher when he remembers what it was like to be a student. The experience, the empathy and the humility - help you to become a better coach.

Looking for more insights about coaching? Check out more from Doug at his blog at

Doug C. Watsabaugh, senior partner at WCW Partners, understands how to meet your unique performance challenges. With more than 20 years of experience, WCW Partners is a performance-improvement company that helps businesses revitalize their results and achieve record-breaking performance.

If you are looking to excel in sales, service or leadership, let Doug develop the capability in you!

Source: EzineArticles
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