Expecting to be paid a fortune
First of all, don’t sign up for the gig just because you think it will pay well. Sure professional coaching is a well-reputed and rewarding career. But usually, the real reward comes long after you have built a firm foundation of your business and have had amazing experiences with most of your clients.
How to avoid: Start simple and slow. Base your charge on the going rates for professional coaches with your level of qualification and experience. Remember that professional coaches add on to their credentials with more and more experience. Don’t forget that it can take some time to move towards the steep part of your learning curve before you finally plateau.
This is another big mistake professional coaches can make at the start of their career. What type of coach you want to be can greatly affect the type of clients you look after and how much you get paid.
How to avoid: Select your area of expertise (life coach, career coach, business coach, etc) so that you can easily translate that into your marketing strategy. Your focus will also give you direction when it comes to additional qualifications, education, and type of training required.
Doing most of the talking
This one not only destroys the purpose of the coaching, but also destroys your potential to resolve client’s issue effectively. Never, ever interrupt while a client is talking and always wait your turn. Remember, your client has all the answers. Your job is only to guide the client speak out their own answers.
How to avoid: Always give your clients enough room (and time) to voice out their feelings. A lot of career coaches adopt the 80/20 rule to do their job right. This means that the client gets to speak 80 percent of the time and you get to speak only 20 percent of the time.
Forgetting that you need a coach too
Granted, career coaches learn a lot with experience. However, that doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t brush up on the coaching rules every year or think about how to add to their training every once in a while.
How to avoid: If you want to grow, you need to believe that your learning is never finished. Attend seminars or training programs that will add to your credentials. You can also work with other great and experienced coaches and see how they operate (like mentorship) or invest in books (i.e. self development) that could add to your coaching skills.
Learning how to educate and grow yourself is the central to being a successful coach. Make sure you take time out for yourself as well to reflect on what you need to be doing, correcting, or changing to be that person who can see through the eyes of others. And whatever you do, never give up!