Executive Coach – 3 Key Things to Look for When Hiring

When an organisation decides to hire an executive coach the process goes a little like this. You decided a senior managers needs some coaching sessions.
If the organisation doesn’t have a coach on retainer you start the search to find one. This involves using Google, Linkedin, word of mouth or something similar. The challenge is how do you know you’ve found the right person?
In this post I explain my top 3 things to look for to ensure you hire the right executive coach for your needs.
Male Executive in need of executive coaching

1. Ability to build rapport and confidence

Not every coach is the right match for every organisation or executive. It is important that the coach can build a good connection with both the individual and the organisation for the relationship to work.  

Let me break this down into its two component parts.

For the organisation any coach you hire has taken the time to understand your organisation, what you’re trying to achieve and how you can and will measure the success.
Things to do: When you walking away for any conversation with a potential coach do you feel confident that they understand your organisation and your unique challenges.  
The executive needs to comfortable with the coach and able to honestly talk to them. They need to be able to trust them with their deepest thoughts and  reflections. 
Things to do: Every coach should be happy to meet with a potential client free of charge to see if they gel. Before you enter into any contract make sure you have done this as it will ensure you have picked the right coach for the right individual.

2. Feedback and Communication

One of the biggest challenge for the majority of executive coaches is to successfully balance meeting the needs of the individual and the needs of the organisation.
A likely reason for starting coaching is because an executive has received some “constructive” feedback. If this is the case any good executive coach will ask to talk to the individuals giving feedback to get the an understanding first hand.
Things to do: Provide the potential coach with any feedback / overview on the individual and ask for their initial thoughts on how they can help .
Above all, you need to be confident that the coach can work with the individual to explore and analyse the feedback. The role of the coach is to create sustainable change in an individual – this must comes from their own self-discovery,  for it to last.
Things to do:  Confirm with any potential coach how they will feed back to the organisation on progress. Make sure you are happy with the approach suggested by the coach. 

3. Experience.

There is  no specific age that makes the best executive coaches, they can be any age from  25 year old to 75 year old. However, to be successful coaching at a senior level  a coach needs to have the gravitas and that comes from the experiences.  You need to confirm the coach you hire has the experience required to understand and support highly skilled very experienced executives. The executive also needs to be confident and comfortable opening up to a coach and a big factor of that will be knowing that the coach has some shared experiences in business, and in life.  Sometimes this can only come with life experience.
Things to do: Ensure that you ask any potential coach about their experience coaching and their wider business experience. Ask for client testimonial for organisations they have worked with.
I hope this has help in some why, please get in touch if you have any question, comments. Are there other things you think are more important? I’d love to hear your thoughts

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