Finding a personal coach

Finding a personal coachMany people find that working with a personal or life coach is very helpful in achieving their goals. Two of the best places to look for solid information on coaching are The Hudson Institute,, and The Coaches Training Institute, Both have a lot of information on the subject of coaching and both offer training programs for anyone considering becoming a coach.

Here are what these two sites say about the purpose and value of a coach and how to choose one:

From the Hudson Institute’s website:

    A coach can help a client see options for becoming a more effective human being. Coaching helps individuals invent changes that are valuable, exciting and intensely personal.

    What is important to consider in choosing a coach?
    Finding the right coach requires some homework and common sense. Ask yourself the following questions:
  1. What is this coach’s process and approach to coaching?
  2. Do I feel comfortable with this individual?
  3. Does the training and experience of this coach have applicability to my needs and background?

From the Coaches Training Institute website:

    Given the significant commitment of money and time that a coach would require from you, it would be in your interest to spend some quality time on selecting the right coach… You might want to consider the following criteria in your selection process:
  1. Interview several and have sample sessions. You want to make sure you have a rapport with your coach and can have the basis for respect and trust. Ask for a sample session. Ask for references. And at the end, trust your "gut" feeling in this process.
  2. Know what you want in a coach. Do you have a male or female, or age preference for your coach? Are there specific personal styles that you are drawn to? To the extent you can articulate clearly what you are looking for, you can find your match faster.
  3. Know what outcomes you seek. Do you want to focus on your career, your relationships, your work/life balance, or something more specific? Although CTI Co-Active coaches are rigorously trained to handle all these areas, coaches do have specialized content knowledge (niches) that would generate additional value if matched with your specific needs.
  4. Know what you need. Coaching is not therapy. Make sure you understand the difference between the two and are really seeking the right venue for your needs.

The Coach Connection ( suggests four conditions necessary for a successful coaching experience:

  1. You have at least one goal that is best achieved through life coaching.
  2. You are ready to participate in the life coaching process.
  3. You are matched with the life coach who is best suited (ideal) for you.
  4. Your life coach has considerable experience and excellent coaching character.

The International Coach Federation ( defines coaching this way: “Coaching is partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential. Professional coaches provide an ongoing partnership designed to help clients produce fulfilling results in their personal and professional lives. Coaches help people improve their performances and enhance the quality of their lives.”

Do you have another source or tips for finding a personal coach? Let us hear from you. Drop an e-mail to

Last revised June 2007


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