- Elon Musk, Investor & Entrepreneur
Maybe you’ve been wondering if your career is going down the right path, or perhaps you’re thinking of switching industries. If you’ve been looking for a job without success or feeling that your current job isn’t satisfying or fulfilling, it might be time to take that extra step to boost your career. You may want to consider hiring a career coach.
But what is a career coach, exactly? And how can they help? Follow along as we explore, what they do, and when you might want to hire one.
CAREER COACHES EXPLAINED
In short, career coaches are experts in all areas of job seeking and career planning. They can help with writing resumes, give counsel on the interview process, and even provide hints and tactics when it comes to negotiating a salary and benefits package.
You, as an able worker, will probably only look for a new job or change careers a few times during your working journey. But a career counselor is a professional job seeker working on the behalf of others, who keeps current with all the latest hiring practices and recruiting trends across many different industries.
THE ROLE OF A CAREER COACH
A career coach is your guide to energizing your job search and overall career. They have the experience and training to be able to help you create a personalized career plan that will meet your career goals. They can provide you with specific information and targeted advice that fits your unique needs and even help you with building your all-important personal network.
To start, a career coach will work with you to get a comprehensive assessment of your work-related strengths and weaknesses. With that baseline, they will ask a series of questions to help get an understanding of what you’re looking for in a job. Are you unhappy with your current job? Do you prefer working with a small team in a start-up or with a larger department as part of a big company?
Sometimes these ideas can be hard to articulate by yourself. A career coach will help you take all these disparate thoughts about your career and focus them into a clear plan that outlines not only your goals but also the steps you need to take to achieve them.
A career coach can also help with long-term goals, like working toward a dream career.
Being out of work for a long time or looking for a new job when you’re feeling unfulfilled can be emotionally taxing. People in these situations can suffer from low self-esteem, crippling doubt, and a general lack of confidence. Rejection letters can be a huge blow to a job seeker’s ego, especially if they start piling up.
Working with a career coach is a little bit like having a personal cheering squad. They will support you as you work through these negative emotions and empower you to take the actions necessary to overcome these feelings. Instead of allowing these disruptive thoughts to sabotage your career or job search, your coach will help you stay focused on your goals and help push your career forward.
WHAT CAREER COACHES CAN’T DO
A career coach can’t guarantee success. They can’t promise you’ll be hired after the first interview and don’t even guarantee you’ll get placed in a job. It’s important to understand that as much as a career coach can offer guidance, you have to put in the work to get the job.
A career coach fills the role of trusted ally and one that remains committed to your success. If you’re having trouble in the job marketplace, they can help you find your passion, keep you accountable and on-task, and even give you an edge over the competition in your job search.
SEARCHING FOR A CAREER COACH
As in most things job-related, having a strong personal network will help you find a good career coach. The best way to find a coach that fits your specific needs or the industry you’re working in is through referrals from friends or even word of mouth. But it’s possible to find a coach from online sources such as Linkedin.
HIRING A CAREER COACH
When it comes to hiring a career coach, be wary if someone asks for an upfront payment. Most reputable career coaches will charge an hourly rate. This hourly rate will let you try out the coach to see if they’re a good fit without becoming locked in a long-term service that isn’t right for you
The cost of a career coach can vary depending on their experience, rate of success, their credentials, what industry they specialize in, and even location. But typically a career coach will charge between $75 to $150 per hour. There are big-name coaches in high-demand who can command rates of up to $500 an hour or even more.
But don’t choose a coach by price alone. Before you commit to a particular coach, it’s a good idea to talk with some of their former clients. This will allow you to get a sense of how they work and if they’re someone you can trust with your career journey.
DO I NEED A CAREER COACH?
If you’re unsure about working with a career coach or you can’t afford one, don’t worry. A coach can be a great asset in your job search, but with a little effort, focus, and honesty about yourself, you can take on the role of your own career coach. You can find a lot of good information online to get you started — this website is a great place to start.
So no, you don’t need a career coach, but a career coach is trained to specifically pinpoint the trouble spots in your career journey and help you overcome them.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Hiring a career coach can be an excellent way to put you on the track to career success. They provide many services that will assist you in finding your next job, your dream job, or the ideal career. In the long-term, the benefits of working under a career coach’s guidance will pay off by fitting you into a career that will keep you happy, invested, and fulfilled.
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Thought leaders & celebrities share their tactics for success on the Lisnic podcast by Lisa Teh & Nick Bell