Golden Visions and Associates | Coaching for Success
Thought for the Week
Your Success Thought for the Week of September 8, 2010
When & How To Hire An Executive Coach
We're rounding out the last third of 2010.  Many of you are well on your way to completing your 2010 goals.  Some of you have ignited this year with new or revised year-end goals, while others already have an eye on 2011.

Good for all of you!  It's pretty hard to accomplish a goal if you don't have it in sight.  One option for accomplishing lofty goals is to hire your own executive coach. Almost daily, I am asked the following two poignant questions:

 When should I hire an executive or leadership coach?
How do I know which one is right for me?

Anyone who has worked with a polished coach knows that it's an intimate relationship. Your coach is there for you no matter what, supporting and stretching you toward your goals. It's a safe environment wherein you speak your truth with no fear of judgment or backlash.  As such, these questions are vital to your success.

When to hire a coach:  My experience is that we all have a vision of who and what they want to be.  We can't always get there on our own.  You know it's time to hire your own coach when:
  • You feel the 'lonely at the top' syndrome. There are people all around you willing to say 'yes.' Yet what you need is a confidant with whom to explore ideas, vent your frustrations, and provide valuable feedback.
  • You're ready to make a major change and know from experience that you can't get there on your own.  Perhaps you want to speed up or ease the process.
  • You've been promoted to that fabulous professional or board position and now you want to really master it, but fear you don't have the total package of expertise.
  • You're in a long-term position and know you can be more effective, yet are caught in old patterns of behavior.  You're not sure how to break out of it. 
  • Your self esteem has taken a hit. You're going through a divorce, demotion through downsizing, or loss of your job.  During this period, your clear focus on who you want to become is vital to your success.   
Who is right for you: Hiring an executive or leadership coach is no different than hiring any other professional.  What has made it challenging is the recent onslaught of those who call themselves 'coaches' with no formal education, expertise, or experience to substantiate this claim.  Be very careful in your selection process.  Look for:
  • Credentials: as with a doctor or attorney, look for credentials.  Unlike these two professions, anyone can decide today that they are a coach and promote themselves as such.  Credentials help you sort qualified coaches from the rest.
  • Experience & track record: what specific experience does this executive coach have in relation to your needs?  If you are a CEO, has this 'coach' worked with other CEO's or C-level clients?  What has his or her success rate been?
  • References: as with hiring any professional ask for references.  LinkedIn or websites are great ways to read up on your prospective coach.  Look for quality, not something thrown together last week.  Be wary of testimonials without names.  Ask to speak with references and be armed with specific questions aimed at your needs.
  • Chemistry:  you need to feel safe in interacting with this individual; to be able to communicate openly and honestly without fear of being judged.  Remember, coaching is all about you and your needs, not about the coach.
Sad example of hiring a coach without these guidelines: Early in my coaching career, I took on a yoga instructor as a client.  Two months into our work she proudly announced that she was a 'leadership coach!'  What?

She then took out a full color advertisement in her local business journal promoting herself as such with no education, expertise, or experience.  The only thing she had ever led was a yoga class. How were prospective clients to know her lack of qualifications unless they looked into her credentials, experience and references?

Although one of the very best investments you can make in yourself, (clients tell me it's among the top ten things they've ever done for themselves) coaching is not an inexpensive endeavor.  Be very careful in your selection process.

If you are challenged with this concept of 'hiring an executive coach,' begin with taking small steps.  Hire one of our coaches to guide you.  At GV&A, we have a variety of skilled, talented, certified coaches to serve you. It can be fun and easier than you think to attain the success you are after.


To see more of my published articles, including '"Falling In Love...With Yourself," go to:

Golden Visions & Associates, Coaching for Executive and Leadership Success

: : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : :
Another Success Thought Testimonial 

"What are you?  A mind reader?  This is exactly what I've been struggling with lately.  I can't tell you how often that happens with your weekly thoughts.  They are different than other newsletters - I feel like they're written directly to me. Thanks for sharing your wisdom and providing such valuable tools.  Your insight is typically right on!" ~ Barbara Williams, Writer, Bend, Or

P. S. We'd love to hear how you used our 'Success Thought of The Week' in your business or personal dealings.Please email your story to
Who Can You Inspire?
If Ann's 'Success Thoughts' inspire you to think or act even a little differently, please encourage your team, friends, family other associates to subscribe.  We've not met a human yet who wouldn't benefit from a little weekly inspiration.
We at Golden Visions & Associates will never use lists or send unsolicited ezines to grow our list of readers; however, we love adding new subscribers. We invite you to forward this newsletter to your friends or colleagues in it's entirety. Why not put your entire company or team on our list to receive these weekly motivators? It's easy.

If you have a list of five or more names, please send it to and they'll start receiving their own 'Success Thoughts' next week.

As always, it's great to be in touch with our subscribers in 'thirteen' countries! Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Lebanon, Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, United Kingdom, Mexico, China, and USA. If you receive these 'Thoughts' and live in a country that I have not mentioned, please let me know so I can salute you.
Ann white shirt Email:

541.385.8887 or toll free 1.888.831.8883


Linked In:  View our profile on LinkedIn
Copyright & Permission Copyright © 1998-2010 All rights reserved

Permission is granted to either reproduce copy or distribute "Your Success Thought for the Week" for Sept. 8, 2010 as long as this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author is attached. The author is Ann Golden Eglé, GV&A, Golden Visions & Associates, Coaching for Success, 541.385.8887, PO Box 1696, Bend, Or. 97709.