more-arw search

Q&A Forum

Career Coach

Thomas cherian's Profile

I always ponder what direction to take with regards to my career. I heard someone refer to career coach-Questions-What is it? How do you find one


Topic Expert
Christie Jahn
Title: CFO
Company: Prime Investments & Development
(CFO, Prime Investments & Development) |

I have heard them called Life Coach. We use one for our District Managers. It helps keep them on track and allows them to work on all aspects of their life (i.e. personal, work, spiritual). I can send you some information if you are still looking; I realize this is old. :)

Topic Expert
Cindy Kraft
Title: CFO Coach
Company: Executive Essentials
(CFO Coach, Executive Essentials) |

Career coaches (disclaimer: I am one) are different from Life Coaches. Our focus is in helping clients (in my case CFOs) proactively manage a very specific piece of their lives ... their careers. I will say, though, that since a career consumes a huge part of life, they are sometimes interconnected. However, career coaches do have a specific focus.

Many career coaches come on the scene once they have an active job seeker as a client. They coach them through the transition period - active search mode.

My practice is a little different since I rarely work with unemployed people. Rather, CFOs (and CFO wannabees) come to me in advance of needing to make a move. We work together on packaging and positioning so they can discriminately choose their next opportunity and land where they want (vs. taking what they need to feed the family). In the process, they are learning those good career management habits that foster being hunted rather than having to hunt for far-future positions.

Some of us also do branding work as part of the packaging and positioning process. Understanding how others see you as it aligns with what you believe to be true about yourself -how you do what you do - and then leveraging that uniqueness as part of an overall communication strategy. For the right candidate, branding is fun and highly effective. It also requires about 3-6 months of work in advance of creating a communication and marketing strategy.

With the exception of a severance package that includes such services, career coaches are paid by the client. Engagements can last anywhere from 6-to-12+ months depending on the services (pre-search, search, and even post-search [landed] coaching).

Hope that helps, Thomas.

Chris Shumate
Title: Accounting Manager
Company: Dominion Development Group, LLC
LinkedIn Profile
(Accounting Manager, Dominion Development Group, LLC) |

When I think of "Life Coaches", I think of Zig Ziglar, John Maxwell, Brian Tracy, and other motivational-type speakers. Perhaps life coaches are even unlicensed physiologists. These are vastly different from yourself and other career coaches.

I have also found that not all recruiters are career coaches either, so I tend not to think of recruiters as such. My opinion, for what it's worth, is that a recruiter is trying to get a candidate a job so that they can get a paycheck for themselves. Whereas a career coach has more of an interest in their client's future. A successful candidate will be repeat business, and even recommend the services to others.

It is good to know also, Cindy, that you work with CFO wannabees.

Topic Expert
Mark Richards
Title: VP Operations and Finance
Company: VP / CFO - Private Company
(VP Operations and Finance, VP / CFO - Private Company) |


Probably the best method to find a coach is to ask others who used one and their experiences - just like you did here, pass the word around to your network.

Most likely you'll get a couple recommendations, so take the time to interview them and see if you have a compatible style. It's a bit of intangible, but it's your level of comfort with their answers. Get a chance to talk to other folks they coached. I think you'll find that the lines between Career and Life coaches tend to blur - since its a bit hard to separate the two at times.

From my experience, the only mistake I made was not investing time before I met with my coach - it probably took us a bit longer than needed to get up to speed. I took a bit of break and gave some consideration to what was interested me - then when we got back together we made more progress.

All the best,


Maria Marsala
Title: Financial Advisor Coach, Speaker, Author
Company: Elevating Your Business
(Financial Advisor Coach, Speaker, Author, Elevating Your Business) |


Before hiring a coach, write a list of things you want to accomplish. Ask your peers if they'd hire a coach and what worked and what they'd do differently. Interview 3 coaches... but find the ones you want.

Cindy mentioned that she's a career coach who works to help her clients reach their goal of being a CFO

I work with financial advisors who are seeking to double their incomes. In order to do that, they have to take a look at their lives. So I'm a trained life coach and experienced business coach.

If you're looking for someone to help you with resumes, interviewing, changing careers, being a better manager, being a better seller, etc. -- you need someone whose specialties are those things. If your life can use some help, then look for someone who works on personal values, needs, missions, etc. and maybe can help you create a life plan.

If coaching 1:1 is out of your finances, then look for a coach who offers group coaching.

The 5'oclock Club is an old time firm that some of my clients have attended... before they decided to start a business.

I have some resources and articles on coaching here:


Get Free Membership

By signing up, you will receive emails from Proformative regarding Proformative programs, events, community news and activity. You can withdraw your consent at any time. Contact Us.

Business Exchange

Browse the Business Exchange to find information, resources and peer reviews to help you select the right solution for your business.

Learn more

Contribute to Community

If you’re interested in learning more about contributing to your Proformative community, we have many ways for you to get involved. Please email [email protected] to learn more about becoming a speaker or contributing to the blogs/Q&A Forum.