CIO Simon Stapleton On Career Coaching

Simon Stapleton CIO a

Today’s post is from UK-based IT career coach and mentor,, Simon Stapleton.

Coaching is a method of using experts to guide and advise to gain increased performance. Football coaches develop footballers to their greatest potential; it’s their job to motivate athletes to achieve greater performance than they thought possible. Career coaches do just the same!

When would you use a career coach?

Although career coaching is a mature industry, the fact is that only a few utilize it. Why? Well it is because most people think coaching is expensive, and also because it requires them to bear all to another human being. Perhaps more the latter? It is just a perception that sharing fears and hopes is weak. That is not true.

Career coaching, in truth, is an enlightening experience that can truly accelerate a career. This promise comes with a price, but is it a price worth paying? The price is billed in three parts:

  1. The financial costs can be high because you are paying for an expert’s time.

  2. The personal cost is that you have to take a risk by opening up to an expert, sharing all the problems you are facing in your career and anxieties you feel.

  3. There is the cost of your time which you have to invest, not just in the coaching sessions, but the time you have to dedicate to work on your actions.

The benefits have to significantly outweigh this cost to motivate you to willfully undergo coaching. It is these benefits that are often underestimated or misunderstood. These benefits are:

  • Receiving guidance on how to enact personal changes to progress in your career.

  • Help with making decisions that can dramatically effect your career.

  • Identifying personal issues that you were not aware of that have a career impact.

  • Advice on how to deal with situations in the workplace.

  • Prompts to act and gain career advantages that you had not spotted yourself.

  • Help in identifying and building on your strengths.

*Confidence boosts as you achieve and reflect.

  • Simply, a person to bounce ideas off or gain perspective on issues or opportunities.

Coaching is a commitment, but it can be done in stages. In fact this is essential; setting grand goals for coaching isn’t advisable, as coaching itself can force you to reassess goals and your desired career outcomes.

Coaching is best when used to achieve smaller goals that can be continuously built upon, so it is perhaps a process that you will use periodically and on an ad-hoc basis. This approach helps you with the financial burden too, right?

Most of all, to accept and receive coaching, you are being courageous; it’s the courage to accept you need help and act upon the goals you agree with another person. Receiving coaching is not a sign of weakness; it is a demonstration of strength!

So coaching is a practice that requires strength of character and acceptance that its price is a sound investment. It can be trialled and if it doesn’t work for you, then you can always stop and try something else.

The author of this article, Simon Stapleton, is dedicated to helping Information Technology professionals with their Career Development, Commercial Development and Personal Development. He has 15 years in the IT Industry and shares his knowledge and tips through his website:
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