Coaching Case Study By Pearly Mak
(Career Coach, SINGAPORE)
My client is a young executive looking to move to another company to do similar job since 6 months ago. But, there was only one reply via email, no interviews. He felt it could be due to the current poor economy, or the poor performance in the industry he is in now.
He hopes this coaching session could help him to evaluate his current job-searching strategy and find ways to move out.
Coaching model applied: ‘ASTEP’:
[Assess] – assess client’s current situation and evaluate his intention and purpose for change.
Get client to share his current situation. His initial assumption was to look for another job in the same industry with similar job-scope will help him land one easily. But it did not happen. Sensing he felt stuck with the current situation, I asked him to share about his passion and strength to help expand his options to consider what he actually wants. He realised he actually doesn’t like his current job.
[Set Target] – to give direction for the coaching session by having client determine what he would like to achieve.
Client set targets to be met at the end of the coaching sessions. Targets must be SMART to ensure he is clear when the milestones are attained.
[Explore] – explore the various options and examine what will help him make decision to take the next step towards achieving his target.
Client was asked questions to help him explore beyond his current situation, he realised that if he is making a switch, he would like a job closer to his passion, which will energise him, not making him feel dreaded. He also identified other problems like needing to improve his resume to align with qualities employers are looking for, and recognised the need to check the skills needed to help him move into these jobs. He hopes his next job would be his long term career.
[Plan] – client to develop a plan to track his actions and results.
Client listed the steps for the next few weeks. He set milestones to track his progress:
- By Week 2 - research for jobs related to his passions and strengths which he could move into, improve to his resume to highlight his strengths and passions
- By Week 3 - look for courses and other ways to acquire skills for these jobs to improve his chances of moving into them, and start sending applications.
In the coaching session, the following ICA competency elements were fulfilled:
- Client was put at ease as the coach build trust with client by assuring he sets the agenda and discussion would be confidential.
- Client was told about the nature of coaching – not consultation, not therapy or counselling; coaching is partnership to explore and decide how to achieve his goals.
- After client understood what coaching entails, we made agreement for the coaching sessions.
- Active Listening: focused on listening to client attentively, I posted questions to encourage him to think out of the box and be open to consider other options. As I listened, I showed attentiveness and encouraged him to speak up with expressions like ‘yup’, ‘yes, I hear you’, ‘definitely’ etc.
- Powerful Questioning: asked him about his strengths and passions to get him to explore other options since his current efforts have not been making progress; asked him about his long term targets, getting him to consider beyond the current moment. Client was able to think widely and showed enthusiasm in looking for a more suitable job. Questioning got him to reframe his perspective and change his strategy.
- Coaching tools: client mapped his ‘Wheel of Life’ to reflect his current priorities and situations. This helps him realise his need to align his passion and strength to his next career move.
Session ended with the client feeling his objective met as he has reorganised his job searching strategy. He said his takeaway from the session was to break away from his narrow mindedness and think long term, to get a job where his strength and passion lie is the better way to go as this will enable him to be more fulfilled in his work.