1. Coaching increases self-awareness
When working with a coach, we are given the opportunity to identify and critically examine our strengths, weaknesses and targets. This is crucial not only when it comes to setting goals, but research also shows that, in order to maintain motivation when working towards our goals, we need a clear understanding of our current situation, the desired outcome, and whether we’re making measurable progress between the two.
2. Coaching helps translate conceptual goals into actionable tasks
On one level, it’s easy to identify professional goals: “increase sales”, “prioritize better”, “improve work-life balance”. But what does working towards these goals actually look like on a day-to-day basis?
Experts highlight the importance of “action-based priorities”, which means deconstructing resolutions into a set of practical, actionable steps. Coaching, particularly 1:1 coaching, supports the learner through this process. In the case of Sharpist’s coaching, we assign learners microtasks to complete between sessions, to ensure that learners make the little changes necessary to make a big difference.
3. Coaching provides support towards attaining goals
It’s often said that, to increase the likelihood of achieving personal goals, such as quitting smoking or exercising more, you should tell the people close to you about them; this psychological trick is thought to make individuals feel more accountable for the commitments they make to themselves. Why should professional goals be any different?
Coaches do not only provide strategic, structured guidance - they are your own support network, engaged and invested in seeing you achieve the goals you set out for yourself. Moreover, recent research from Ohio State University found that having the support of someone you look up to check in on you and provide feedback can make a measurable difference to the outcome. This is something we at Sharpist take into account, assigning coaches with a wealth of knowledge and experience in a targeted manner based on the industry and role of the learner.
4. Coaching increases self-confidence
Many individuals fail to follow through with their New Year’s Resolutions due to a lack of belief in themselves and, consequently, motivation to change. It is important to recognise that coaching is not just a remedial measure, offered to improve communication skills or adapt to challenging new environments, it is also intended to empower.
By identifying the learner’s strengths as well as areas for improvement, coaching helps to decrease self-limiting behaviors and beliefs. Indeed, according to studies, increased self-confidence is the most common benefit of professional coaching, with 80% of learners feeling more assured of their strengths and abilities.
5. Coaching reduces procrastination
We’ve all been there: we can identify the changes we want to see in our lives but, somehow, the actions we need to take to make them happen just keep being put back further and further. Studies suggest that chronic procrastination affects roughly one in five adults. If you find yourself guilty of procrastinating, then, the good news is you're not alone - and coaching is here to help!
Coaching has been shown to decrease procrastination, facilitating goal attainment by developing learners’ ability to manage their time effectively and efficiently. If you’re one of the many people who struggle with putting off targets and deadlines, coaching might just help!
6. Coaching fosters a growth mindset
“Growth mindset” has become an increasingly common buzzword in business speak. Fundamentally, a growth mindset is about individuals believing their talents can be developed through hard work, strategy, feedback, and communication.
Though this may seem a daunting prospect for those with imposter syndrome, there are small, everyday steps individuals can take to develop a growth mindset. For instance, research has revealed the effectiveness of so-called “growth-mindset trigger words” in bringing about changes. These are small changes in vocabulary designed to instill a sense of progress and development. Instead of setting the goal to “stop procrastinating”, for example, reframe the goal as “develop better time-management skills”. Coaching is instrumental in encouraging a growth mindset, with its focus on aligning personal and conceptual goals with effective, proven strategies.
7. Coaching creates space for reflection and contemplation
Particularly as we move towards the end of the year, finding the time to reflect on our personal goals in a busy work environment can be a challenge. Having such a space is important when it comes to attaining goals; if we are not afforded the opportunity to think retrospectively about how the year has gone and how we would like next year to be different, how can we make meaningful changes?
That’s why at Sharpist, we firmly believe in the value of 1:1 coaching, tailoring sessions to the individual and allowing them to reflect on their strengths and areas for growth. Through a structured series of engagements with an experienced professional during coaching sessions, learners are able to improve their ability to self-analyze and, in turn, make the changes necessary to achieve the future they want.
To conclude, the turn of the year is the ideal time to set new targets and aspirations - a phenomenon researchers refer to as the “fresh start effect”. Coaching allows individuals the opportunity to not only start the new year with a set of strategic goals, but to maintain changes in behavior throughout the year. From increasing learners’ self-awareness and self-confidence to helping them develop strategies to avoid procrastination, coaching is, first and foremost, a continual journey of self-improvement.