7 Things to consider while looking for a high-performance coach


Do you know that good coaching has a 221% ROI? That probably explains why 1.5 million searches are made by companies for business coaches and executive coaches. But finding the right coach, who will constantly push you outside of your comfort zone, is not an easy job. Imagine meeting your ideal high performance executive coach who can help you break free from any self-limiting attitudes and mindsets! Well, this article will help you learn essential factors to consider when selecting an executive coach who can set you on the path to exceptional leadership. 

Seven Factors to Consider When Selecting a High Performance Coach

Area of Expertise

If you’re looking for high performance executive coaching, you will look for someone with a strong background in:

  • Leadership development: to help you refine leadership styles, improve team management, and refine your leadership approach 
  • Strategic thinking: to empower you to overcome complex challenges and make informed decisions that drive business growth 
  • Executive presence: to refine your communication skills, public speaking abilities, and overall professional image 
  • Emotional intelligence: to help you develop self-awareness, learn stress management, and build strong relationships with clients and colleagues 

While interviewing potential coaches, ask about their coaching philosophy and know about their experience with C-suite or executives at your level. If their LinkedIn or any other public profile shows any publications, awards and recognition, that’s even better. 

Coaching Style

Different coaches have their way of helping people learn new things. Some are direct and challenge you, while others take a more supportive and nurturing role. Here are some common coaching styles for executives: 

  • Directive coaching: a more structured approach with clear guidance 
  • Supportive coaching: focuses on self-reflection to discover your own solutions and build self-confidence 
  • Strategic coaching: directs you on big-picture thinking and problem-solving strategies 
  • Transformational coaching: goes beyond performance and helps with personal growth 

To find the right coach, you have to decide the right coaching style for your development. 

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you prefer clear instructions or a more exploratory approach?
  • Are you more direct or action-oriented?
  • What do you hope to achieve through coaching?

Once you have the clarity, you can narrow down which style of coaching would be most effective.

Credentials and Certifications

Credentials and certifications are valuable indicators of a coach’s expertise and commitment to the profession. Though not mandatory, check if your potential coach holds certification from these reputable organizations: 

  • International Coach Federation (ICF)
  • Academy of Executive Coaching (AoEC)
  • Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) 

Certification ensures that coaches have gone through a structured training program to provide a baseline level of knowledge and skills. Also, if you’re partnering with a coach from a reputable coaching organization, you can rest assured of coaches being updated with best practices to provide you with quality coaching service. 

Chemistry and Communication

A study found that 80% of participants admitted that personal rapport is very important when selecting a coach. It is imperative to find a coach whose communication style and personality resonate with you, as that builds the base for a successful coaching experience. 

Why is this important?

Imagine feeling uncomfortable opening up and trusting your coach. Could you possibly get any benefit out of that coaching?

But, you might wonder how to assess these traits in your potential coach during initial screening procedures? 

Well, one of the easiest ways is to look for all verbal and non-verbal cues. Notice how they speak (tone, pace, clarity), how they use their body language (openness, warmth), and their overall demeanor. 

Track Record and Results

Tracking a coach’s record and results can be tricky as it involves confidential client information. However, there are still ways to gauge their effectiveness. Inquire about the types of results they’ve helped clients achieve. This is the direct inquiry that could prove more beneficial than other modes of investigation. 

You can also search for online reviews or testimonials on their website or portfolio. However, be cautious, as some reviews might be less relevant or candid. To verify the authenticity, you can randomly reach out to two to three reviewers on Facebook or LinkedIn to get insights into the coach’s approach. 

Cost and Investment

Hiring an ideal coach for high-performance coaching can be a significant investment. Often, the more experienced the coach is, the higher the fees. However, their specialized approach or track record might lead to a quicker and more significant return on your investment. 

The cost also may vary depending on the program structure and duration. For instance, individual sessions are more expensive than group coaching programs. Similarly, longer coaching engagements (3-6 months) can be expensive yet offer better value than shorter ones (a few sessions). You might also be able to negotiate a better deal, if you’re considering a long-term or strategic program. 

Ask for a free consultation to get a sense of their coaching style and make an informed decision.

Coaching Niche

Coaches who specialize in executive coaching have a deeper understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities executives face within that niche. For instance, a coach with experience in tech startups can better guide an executive to overcome leadership challenges related to mergers and acquisitions. 

That said, before you start looking for a coach, reflect on your goals and desired development areas. With that clarity in mind, look for coaching directories or recommendations from professional associations within your industry. Make a list of vetted coaches with expertise relevant to your niche and start contacting them to schedule an initial consultation. 

End Thoughts

Investing in a high-performance coach is an investment in yourself for a rewarding future. Consider the factors shared above to find an ideal executive coach within your niche. Remember, nothing is more valuable than your time. If you find it extremely time-intensive to search, select, and try the service of a professional coach, try Unifai’s data-driven executive leadership coaching. We provide transformational coaching technology solutions to identify your leadership blindspots and improve as a leader. 
Support and empower your potential company leaders with Unifai today!

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