I love the fact that I am hearing the word coach all of the time now.
It is becoming part of our universal language, and the benefits of coaching are just known, and often don’t need explaining. It is becoming a norm.
As I have explained before, coaching is an ancient skill that has always been at the heart of our communities. Whether we would discuss our problems with the village elder, the priest, or a grandparent, historically our ancestors would confide in a wise one. The world in which we live in now is very different.
Those brought up in the 20th Century, were brought up to believe in competition. Don’t show your true feelings, failure, game playing and materialism, be the best and beat the rest. We judged success based on what someone has been achieved externally, and not on what they have consciously chosen to achieve.
The 20th century was a century of reconstruction from a pretty desolate post war position. There was progress, building, wealth, advancement, motorways, housing estates, the corporation, home ownership, everyone had a right to have a car, bank account and 2 holidays a year. It was all about goal setting, KPI’s and targets. You may slog your guts out this year, and then the targets went up. Increasing performance, output, wealth or your property portfolio was the never-ending treadmill we all found ourselves on, the road to nowhere.
The question was always what do you want to do when you grow up? Never what do you want to be, or where would you like to go?
I have observed a shift as we entered the 21st century. We can look back on the 20th century as a piece of history, a novelty, and almost think, weren’t they all so naïve? The architecture of concrete, uniform, functional boxes are now looked at sadly. The struggles, protests and injustices look like a movie, and something we can’t now relate to. Phrases such as “greed is good”, “dog eat dog world” and “each man for himself” is seen as selfish, and autocratic, never to be repeated.
The Wolf of Wall Street is now a piece of social history.
But there is a hangover, we still teach our children from that mind-set in which we were brought up in.
But we are all now understanding that whilst we all went spend crazy, we were just filling a void. We were all just busy distracting ourselves by doing, and not understanding what the void was.
So I watch The Voice and notice that they have coaches now. All sports people have coaches. CEO’s, Executives and Presidents have coaches. You can be coached in marketing, finance, parenting, sport, driving, singing, in fact anything.
Having a coach is like having an estate agent, financial planner or personal trainer. If you want to do something better, get a coach.
So why do we need to bring out the coaches?
Whether we like it or not life keeps moving forward. We are evolving. Even if we are stuck, life still moves on, and we need to move with it. Having someone right by your side, looking at your performance, understanding your values and your purpose, and then helping you tap into that when making decisions keeps you moving.
Can you imagine Beyoncé not having a singing coach? or Bradley Wiggins not having a Performance Coach. They may know internally when they are of kilter, but their coach will help them see, quickly, which notes they aren’t hitting, or where performance is suffering and then they can focus on fixing it.
I met a marketing professional today. She described her relationship with clients as a GPS. She explained that she helps companies set a marketing strategy, and then, although they may take some deviations, she helps them stay on course to the final destination. I loved that, at it is how I see the work of a coach. everyone’s journey is individual, sometimes we maybe pulled of course, sometimes we may doubt we will get there, but with the help of a coach, we will stick to our path and commit.
So I encourage everyone to call in their coach. Whatever that means to you.