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Have you worked with an executive coach? How did you choose the right one?

Laurie Gray's Profile


Bryan Frey
Title: VP Finance/Corp Controller
(VP Finance/Corp Controller, ) |

I did briefly, a few companies back. I got a referral to a few and interviewed them, however, there was no Proformative back then, so you had to go direct to your network. The interview process was about me being comfortable with their experience and their ability to understand my situation and provide useful guidance. It was much like interviewing any job candidate, except these folks were all more seasoned and more accomplished than I was.
I found one I liked and we did meet bi-monthly for many quarters. We had to shut it down as it was very expensive, and between the CEO getting a coach and my having a coach, there was too many $'s spent on coaches :). At the end of the day I would say that a)you get out of it what you put in, so you need to stay on their radar, communicate regularly, and really push for insightful information, and b)I got good advice, but nothing incredibly revelatory. It was certainly nice to have, but not a must-have as I look back on it. I actually far prefer having a vastly broad group of smart folks to tap into at Proformative 24x7, but having that 1:1 time did have its moments. Good luck!

Dan Gaffney
Title: Owner
Company: VouchedIn, Inc.
(Owner, VouchedIn, Inc.) |

I've used a few different coaches and it's been a worthwhile investment for me. I searched online and found ones near me and went with what their website said. I've tried a few that weren't the right fit, and I could tell from a phone call if they were or not. If not the right fit, try a different one.

I've found coaches are stronger in different aspects of human needs. One may be better for focusing on communication skills, another on business planning, and yet another on managing stress. But you can find professionals that are helpful in several areas combined. Good luck!

Topic Expert
Linda Wright
Title: Consultant
Company: Wright Consulting
(Consultant, Wright Consulting) |

I worked with a group called GreyHairs. They interviewed me to get a sense of my areas of focus. Then I was presented with three well qualified coaches, all in the San Francisco Bay Area. I picked Roy Blitzer, who on paper, was perhaps the least likely (not a CFO or Treasurer). Working with him was a great time.

Jack Noodelman
Title: Budget Director
Company: Canada Economic Development
LinkedIn Profile
(Budget Director, Canada Economic Development) |

I was referred to a number of possible coaches by our HR department. I met with each of them for an initial interview to determine the nature of the services they offered, to clarify for them what I was looking for, and to see if there was a good "fit", personality-wise. My advice, make sure you are comfortable (emotionally and psychologically) with the person you choose. My experience was not positive when I went with the coach that I felt would "challenge" me but, over the years, very positive the times I went with someone with whom I felt "in sync".


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