What They Don’t Tell You In Life Coach Training

I’m going to tell you something, but before I do, I want you to sit down, maybe pour yourself a stiff drink and have a portable defibrillator to hand, just in case.

Last night I was sat in bed reading a post on LinkedIn by another Life Coach.

I won’t mention the coach in question other than to say she was making some outrageous and quite frankly, ignorant and stupid claims.

Her spin was on David Letterman’s last show and his ’10 things’ monologue and to begin with I thought she was joking.

She obviously wasn’t.

According to her, if you hire a Life Coach (her presumably) you will get the following:

  1. You’ll Actually Get More $!#& Done!
  2. You’ll Actually Get More $!#& Done FASTER!
  3. You’ll Make Fewer Mistakes!
  4. You’ll Get Promoted OR Figure Out Your Life Already ROCKS!
  5. Your Problems Go Away!
  6. You’ll Make More $$$$$$$!
  7. You’ll Be A Lot HAPPIER!
  8. You’ll Get People To Do More Stuff For You!
  9. You’ll Celebrate More!
  10. You’ll Become A Rock Star

I kid you not, she made every one of those claims, although she did add that maybe you won’t be a real rock star, unless that is you want to be.

I was going to leave a comment suggesting she added a disclaimer along the lines of:

“None or all of the above maybe true depending on about a billion different permutations, and I’m really damaging the credibility of the coaching industry by making such silly unsubstantiated outrageous claims”

Bringing Life Coaching Into Disrepute

The thing is, all of those can be true (although it’s highly unlikely you’ll deliver all 10 to any one client), but to state them as facts brings the entire industry into disrepute and makes every Life Coaches job that much harder.

Imagine as a potential client you read that. You’re probably going to think one of two things.

  1. Holy shit this is amazing I need to hire this coach now and my life will be perfect.
  2. What a crock of shit, presumably I get a free Unicorn too?

Anybody who is skeptical of Life Coaching will be even more so after reading such outrageous claims. They may also want to tell others and warn them against hiring a coach.

And anybody who hires a coach and doesn’t get those results will feel that either coaching is bullshit, the coach is a bullshitter, or there is something wrong with them for not achieving such lofty goals.

None of the above are good.

Your success with every client depends on a great many factors, some of which are out of your control, some of which are within your control.

You will have lazy clients who think hiring you is all they need to do.

You will have clients who don’t do the work because of extenuating and often unforeseen factors.

And you will have clients who get scared by change and back off from the tough decisions just as it seems they are about to breakthrough.

Quite often there is nothing you do to change the latter, the timing was just off and they weren’t quite ready.

You will also have serial procrastinators hire you, and trust me, they are the hardest clients to deal with.

You will have clients who quit their job to start their own business that then fails.

It maybe their fault, it maybe just bad luck, or it maybe because you got a tad reckless and pushed them a bit too hard when they weren’t ready.

What They Don’t Tell You In Life Coach Training

You will fuck up.

And you will probably fuck up quite a lot to begin with.

And it’s ok, because you’re human.

However, if you have made outrageous claims you are going to look very foolish.

Coaching isn’t an exact science, which is why we cannot make grandiose promises about the results our clients will achieve.

If we do, we leave ourselves wide open to unhappy clients on occasions and potential litigation if we really go over the top as in the example above.

For sure, promise to do your best. But I’d be leery of promising anything more than that.

Then when you make mistakes, as you will, and as do I even after 10 years and thousands of hours of coaching, learn from them and then put them behind you.

Life Coach Training

I say they don’t teach you this in Life Coaching, but we do at Coach The Life Coach.

We also tell you how difficult it is to succeed at Life Coaching and how hard you have to work.

But also how rewarding it is when put the work in and make a go of it.

The June 28th training is the last one we’re offering at $999 (or three payments of $349 if you prefer) as I am investing a lot of money back into the business to make it even better and have brought a partner on board.

You can read what you get for the cost of approximately one good client by clicking here.

Comments

  1. One of the things I really value about my training was the emphasis on that we’re human and are going to make mistakes… and that it’s all right. A powerful idea that came up also was Hudson’s cycle of renewal: https://www.snoety.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/renewal-cycle-copy.jpg

    Yes, coaching may be able to help you accomplish lots of stuff, but we go in cycles, and through transitions (great book on that: https://www.amazon.com/Transitions-Making-Changes-Revised-Anniversary/dp/073820904X). There’s nothing wrong with all of those goal-oriented things, but they all come and go – and there are plenty of people who have all of those things and are miserable. I feel like it’s the difference between Human Being and Human Doing/Human Having.

    I would rather work with a client’s Being and help them have the tools to live better and thrive through the transitions when making “$$$$$” isn’t satisfying anymore, rather than help them be a “rockstar” (what are we, twelve? Most rockstars are TERRIBLE rolemodels lol)

    • Love that cycle of renewal wheel Mark, thank you for sharing the link. It reminds me of the anatomy image of a baby’s skull bones, and the transitions the fetus makes to negotiate the birth canal (sorry for the picture, it’s the ex-midwife in me!). If it doesn’t get it right it gets ‘stuck’ and needs support to get out. Rather like hiring a life coach aye?

  2. Michael Wecke

    A good reminder, Tim – We are human, and so are the clients (unless they are someone like Hannibal Lecter). We have no idea of their world view, their bias, and their triggers. Yes, if we worked on the Core Values prior to entering a coaching “pattern”, we would be able to pick up important pointers about the personality of a potential client. This is not to say that we are now on safe ground. When I once advised a client not to push his religious agenda in a secular business environment, I almost became the enemy – a reaction totally out of the blue. I was doing HR consulting at the time.

    What I would worry about – once I have built new CTLC coaching skills on my Corporate Coach U International Certification (I didn’t like their impersonal style much) – is how do you respond to a client’s valid question “So, my dear Life Coach, how much experience do you actually have, doing this”? “Hhmmm, you’re my first client”… and the screen goes blank?

    Anyway, making such outrageous claims, as listed in your blog post about the other Coach, is foolish.

    Have a great weekend!

    • Tim Brownson

      To be honest Michael, even in my early days I don’t ever remember being asked that.

      I think it’s one of those fears that can of course happen, but rarely does.

      And in any case you consider them a poor fit and move on to the next person who can benefit from your expertise!

  3. Thanks Tim – totally with you! I’ve recently had three ‘consults/discovery calls’ and signed up just one (as of today) as a paying client (one out of three ain’t bad?). My gut feeling is the other two either weren’t ready yet, or wanted me to promise to deliver unrealistic outcomes that I wasn’t prepared to do. My second highest anti-value is deceit, I will not lie to or cajole potential clients.

    As you say there are far too many variables. We promise to do our best (reminds me of the Brownie promise!) to support the client to make the changes they want in their lives. Nothing comes with guarantees – oh apart from we’re all going to die!

    • Tim Brownson

      a 33% close rate (presuming they weren’t all referrals) is considered good in field sales, so there is that 😉