Who is the best coach that you have ever been exposed to?
Think globally, it is not just about sports. It could have been a teacher, a friend, a colleague, a boss or a family member as well. What was it about what they said to you that made you think and challenge your assumptions? Good coaches have a special quality about them. They are able to get you to a place where you feel confident enough to take on a challenge or comfortable enough to confront an issue.
If you are thinking about moving your career along, or are thinking about how to coach someone who is ready to jump, keep in mind the following tenets:
Do your homework
Research and network in advance of making a move. Know who the key players are, talk with people in that space and get a sense of what it is really like on that side of things.
Timing is key
When it comes to managing your career, timing is critical. Do not jump too soon, and do not wait too long for the right opportunity to come along. A good coach will help you understand when the timing is right and when you should make the move, and when you should stay put for a little longer.
Lateral moves are good too
Do not just always assume that you have to move up in an organization. Gaining breadth of experience and exposure will help your long-term potential.
Think two to three moves ahead
Think before you act, what opportunities will this next role set you up for? Be strategic about what roles you take, try and avoid pigeon-holding yourself into what area.
Get on the ground experience
Get as close to the customer as you can, understand how the company operates and do not be afraid to get dirty.
Navigating a career takes effort and a good deal of work, it takes a support system and for many people that means it takes a good coach; someone who can get you to see through any biases that you may have about a particular role or person.
Keep these tenets in mind as you think about how to coach your employees through critical career transitions.