With No Standard Solution, It’s Time to Reimagine Business Practices: Ours & Our Clients
As Ross from Friends says….PIVOT!
We, as individuals and as the coaching industry as a whole, strive to prevent stagnation. We are and always have been on a journey of continuous learning.
The coaching profession has always been one of the first industries to adopt innovation.
The original International Coaching Federation drafted industry standards back in the mid-90s. The internet hadn’t even arrived in most of the world yet. But since t hose original Coaching Competencies were set forth, the world of our clients has changed: Emojis were created, Skype became relevant, the iPad was invented, and Zoom came along. Love it or hate it, each technological change has been adopted by businesses worldwide.
The pandemic is blamed for disrupting businesses and creating uncertainty, and it has but hasn’t it also sped up changes in business practices that were coming anyway?
Many of us in the coaching industry were concerned when the pandemic began as to whether clients would still need coaching services. We panicked at the disruption of our normal and worried about preserving it. We forgot how adaptable businesses and people actually are even if change is coming faster than anyone is truly comfortable with.
The pandemic has also forced businesses to learn how to accommodate more human aspects than they used to. Businesses were already moving towards greater compassion and empathy towards their employees, but at a very slow pace.
The pandemic resulted in mass family illnesses, homeschooling, and restrictions on personal and professional movement and forced many businesses to prioritize considering how people spend their time and energy.
Everyone had their ingrained habits and routines but the pandemic forced us to stop and think: to consider what is important to us and what we want, to adjust and center ourselves, to consider what we will no longer tolerate, to become resilient in the face of disruption.
In short, the pandemic has offered us the opportunity to pivot.
As progress is made in technology and business practices our clients have always adopted and adapted them to suit their needs. Why would we act any differently now just because things are changing faster than we may be comfortable with? The coaching industry stands at a precipice ready to help others learn how to navigate through a world never seen before.
The pandemic has resulted in a world where 24/7 contact is the norm, working from home has blurred the line between personal and professional, and digital nomadism asks “Why can’t I work from Bora Bora?”. This new world needs the coaching industry now more than ever before.
Coaches need to stand up and say “I am here with you. This is hard, but we’ll get through this together. We will help you reimagine yourself & your business to thrive in this new environment.”
This reimagining of life and business will take time, but you can get started by being genuine in your efforts to connect with and listen to your clients about their successes and failures. Connecting to another at a human level goes a long way towards building confidence in themselves and in you.
Many people want to work with coaches because we speak the truth even when it is a hard truth. We have those difficult conversations with clients, but during those conversations, we deliver value in the form of problem-solving and motivation. We talk our clients through what they need to fix, potential solutions to the problem, and end on a positive note leaving our clients feeling empowered and ready to take on the world.
Our ability to identify issues or success, problem-solve, and motivate is crucial to people and businesses in this new age of virtualization. We might not have a standard solution for businesses adjusting to post-pandemic work practices, but coaches are here and willing to help businesses imagine new ones.
How does it apply to you in your life?
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