As a consultant, you are trusted to provide guidance and direction to your clients, and they take your recommendations and apply them in ways that could possibly impact the lives of an untold number of people. It is for this reason, there is little room for consultants who do not have a handle on who they are and what they have to offer to their clients.
As emergent consultants, having a clear understanding one’s self can be challenging. It is here that a coach may prove to be a highly useful resource for a consultant. Coaching primarily involves the teaching of skills in the context of a personal relationship with a learner, (Sperry, 1993) however coaching can go beyond skill development. Coaching has been instrumental in developing individual confidence, providing support, and inspiring individuals to action in a high percentage of people’s lives starting when they are very little. (Wilson, 2004)
Consultants who are supported by a coach are given the opportunity to have ownership in their decisions rather than be told what they should do, be acknowledged for successes as well as efforts in achievement pursuits, and approaching mistakes as learning opportunities rather than failures (Wilson, 2004). Through this relationship with a coach, emergent consultants are able to try out different approaches, explore their skills and abilities as well as their passions and desires, and journey on an adventure that will provide insight into who the consultant is as an individual.
As consultants expose themselves to the process of being coached, they will gain greater insight into themselves as well as increase their performance as a consultant. (Phillips, 1995) This will not only benefit the consultant herself, but it will greatly impact the consultant’s clients and the hundreds, and possibly thousands, of lives that are impacted by them.
Phillips, R. (1995). Coaching for higher performance. Executive Development, 8(7), 5–7. http://doi.org/10.1108/09533239510099075
Sperry, L. (1993). Working with executives: Consulting, counseling, and coaching. Individual Psychology: The Journal of Adlerian Theory, Research & Practice, 49(2), 257.
Wilson, C. (2004). Coaching and coach training in the workplace. Industrial and Commercial Training, 36(3), 96–98. http://doi.org/10.1108/00197850410532087