How to Find an Executive Coach and Reach Your Career Goals

Our career life is a fluid and constantly changing part of our life. And change, whether good or bad, can be hard to face. Humans are hard-wired to resist change, even if we know it is for the better.

You may be battling this resistance to change in your own career life as you seek a new role or position. No matter how motivated you feel to grow professionally, it is common to experience roadblocks to your potential. Luckily, there is an executive coach out there who is the perfect match for you and can help you overcome your personal hurdles.

In a business and corporate landscape that is increasingly more competitive, hiring a career coach is becoming a key component in professional development. Defining your professional goals, finding the right executive coach, and investing in your career growth are your next steps to your best personal performance and landing the role you want!

So let’s get you an executive coach so you can sit confidently at that executive desk!

In this article, we will discuss:

  • Why an executive coach is beneficial to your career.
  • The different types of executive coaches you can work with.
  • How to find an executive coach who matches your career goals.
  • What to look for when hiring an executive coach.
  • Questions to ask your executive coach.

Why is an Executive Coach Beneficial?

Working with an executive coach can be a game-changer for your career. Executive coaches work one-on-one with their clients to help them achieve their individual professional goals. Finding an executive coach who matches your needs is the first step to climbing the corporate ladder and landing yourself that next position. 

To find the right coach, it is important to understand the different types of executive coaches and ask the right questions during your selection process. The career coach you choose should share your values and have experience working with other professionals in your industry. 

Types of Executive Coaches

You may be wondering how to find an executive coach that best fits your career needs and aspirations. Executive and career coaches come in a wide range of specializations and qualifications, and understanding what to look for is the best place to start. 

Some of the most common types of executive coaches include:

1.  Leadership Coach

Leadership coaching is designed to help clients develop and enhance their leadership skills, including communication, strategic thinking, and impactful decision-making. Whether you have acquired a new leadership role or are aspiring to one, investing in your leadership development will profoundly impact your success. 

2.  Career Coach

A career coach helps professionals and executives navigate the next steps in their career paths. This includes supporting clients as they make career changes, navigate new roles, or build skills to meet a job requirement successfully. 

3.  Personal Development Coach

A personal development coach helps their client identify their personal skills in order to land their next role or succeed in their current one. Often, personal skill development is an overlapping element of executive coaching in general. Coaches focus on identifying their clients’ strengths and developing their emotional intelligence, self-awareness, and mindfulness. 

4.  Performance Coach

Performance coaches help clients navigate ways to grow in their current role to bring greater success to their business or organization. Coaches specialize in objective and professional approaches to help their clients improve their performance, overcome obstacles, and increase productivity and yields. 

5 Things to Look for When Hiring an Executive Coach

The process of finding an executive coach requires you to identify your own goals and what you want out of the coaching relationship. An effective coach extends beyond their specialization. Keep in mind that you are investing in your career growth, and finding a qualified coach with whom you feel comfortable is essential to the process. 

When looking for the right coach, consider these top 5 factors:

1.  Experience

A coach with a strong track record of success is what you are going to want! Look for a coach with extensive experience working with other professionals in your industry or with similar career backgrounds and growth goals. 

2.  Qualifications

The best executive coaches make their qualifications public. Look for a coach who has completed coaching certification training, has extensive personal experience in their specialized industry, or holds a degree in a relevant field. 

3.  Style

Executive coaching services come in a range of different styles. Some coaches have a very direct, instructional approach to their clients. Others take a more guided approach by asking questions and offering prompts that allow you to reach your decisions together. Think about the kind of coaching you respond to best, and ask for referrals to understand better how your potential coach works with their clients. 

4.  Flexibility

You are a working professional with a busy schedule. Not only will you need a coach who can fit into your work schedule, but you will want a coach who can adapt to your goals as they evolve throughout the coaching process. You will find that coaches are adept at adjusting along with you and your priorities. 

5.  Compatibility

Now that you have found potential coaches with the experience, qualifications, and style you hope for, it is time to ensure they are compatible with you. Seeking out a coach can feel vulnerable, making trust and comfort essential qualities in the coach you choose. Use the questions below as a starting guide to help you find the best executive coach for you.

Questions to Ask Your Executive Coach

A good relationship with your executive coach can significantly impact your professional growth, making it essential to find the right one. After you have found a few potential coaches, you will want to know what questions to ask your prospective coach to ensure they match you. 

Here are some key questions to get you started and help you find an executive coach:

  1. What is your coaching philosophy? It is crucial to understand a coach’s approach and driving beliefs and values to make sure that they are similar to your own.
  1. What are your qualifications? It is important to determine whether your potential executive coach has the necessary skills and industry knowledge to help you achieve your goals. Ask them about their qualifications, including their education, certifications, professional training, and industry experience. 
  1. What is your area of expertise? Ask your coach about the areas they specialize in to determine if they will be a match for your own professional goals. Ask your coach what industries and types of clients they have the most experience with.
  1. What is your coaching process and availability? It is important to know what to expect during your executive coaching sessions. Ask your potential coach how they approach sessions and how long they typically coach their clients. Additionally, inquire about their current availability to ensure that it lines up with your timeline and goals. Understanding their coaching process will help you decide if they are a good fit and prepare emotionally and mentally.
  1. Can you provide references? Talking to previous clients is a great way to get another perspective on the coaching process. Asking for references will offer you an opportunity to receive honest insight into your potential coach’s effectiveness, process, and style. 

Find Your Executive Coach

Now that you know what to look for and what questions to ask your potential executive coach, it’s time to find one! You can begin your search by asking colleagues in your industry for recommendations.

Did you know that CoachCompare has an extensive directory of coaches? Utilize the keyword finder to enter what is most important to you in a coach and find your perfect match. 

how to find an executive coach