What’s the Role of a Performance Coach?

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January 1, 2020

What’s the Role of a Performance Coach?

Performance is a factor of life that transcends all boundaries. No matter your background or career choice, you must perform at a basic level in order to survive. But what about to succeed? Performing successfully can become a cumbersome task as more responsibilities and ambitions come into play. Anxiety, cognitive distortions, and procrastination can all quickly start to set in and take over a person’s performance. In fact, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. With life characterized by forces we cannot control, it can be easy to lose sight of the things we can, which is where a performance coach can really make a difference. 

What is a Performance Coach?

A performance coach is a person who uses performance psychology to catalyze the development and goal setting of another individual. In doing so, the person being coached can welcome positive changes in their lives. Coaches typically assist clients in refining their skills while helping them acquire new ones. Ultimately, performance coaches strive to enhance their client’s peak performance and equip them with the cognitive tools needed to overcome adversity. 

It’s important to note that a performance coach is not a life coach or a counselor. They do not offer life advice, their personal experiences, or opinions on sensitive matters. They cannot use CBT, EMDR, or other psychological methods of treatment on their clients without having a medical license to do so. A performance coach’s purpose is to help individuals achieve their business or personal aspirations through mentorship and workshops. 

The Role of a Performance Coach Explained

A performance coach is hired to sustainably catapult their client’s dreams into reality. A coach’s role is to help these individuals self-actualize in ways not possible on their own and to leave them with a repeatable process for the times ahead. A coach will first collaborate with an individual on what they wish to accomplish. Then, the coach will gain an understanding of their behavioral patterns by investigating how their client is currently trying to execute their goals. After the coach has assessed their client’s situation, they will create an improved plan of action for the future. The plan is a journey that requires time, so a coach is there for the individual throughout the process, offering guidance and perspective along the way. They help a person move towards their desired results at their own pace while building a relationship based on trust. 

During this transformation, as mentioned above, coaches will analyze their client’s performance patterns and dig deeper into what is driving them. It can seem like a trivial part of the process, but it’s actually a crucial facet. Denise Shull, performance coach to Wall Street professionals and celebrity athletes, explains how “Popular psychology is focused on what you do – your behavior – and on being positive. I am focused on how you feel – consciously, but even more importantly unconsciously – and on the negative, on your fears and frustrations.” Helping people understand how their thoughts and actions are influenced by emotions, relationships, and social media opens them up to a mindset that is ideal for enhancing peak performance. If clients don’t reach that level of mindfulness first, their coaching experience can be less successful. So it’s important for clients to be honest and build trust while committing to big change. 

With a performance coach, one can expect to 

  • Develop new skills
  • Set purposeful goals
  • Identify and hone strengths
  • Enhance peak performance levels
  • Overcome negative thoughts and patterns
  • So much more!

Is Performance Coaching Right For You?

Anyone can benefit from performance coaching, but not all coaching is the same. Performance coaches work with clients typically on an individual basis either for personal or professional purposes. Nevertheless, their expertise can make a lasting impact on businesses as well! According to the American Institute of Stress, 40% of office workers reported being stressed in 2019. Having a performance coach work with each member of the team can leave the entire staff feeling empowered and focused. Coaching can even address organizational issues such as absenteeism, “burned out” feelings, and of course, stress. Whether you are at a company that could use some organizational training or are considering coaching for yourself, a performance coach can be a solution for bringing out potential and managing change positively. 

Things to Keep in Mind

When finding the coach that is right for you, take your time and be careful to not rush the process. Instead, carve out time dedicated to unpacking what you desire in a coach. There are several variables to consider, but one of the first decisions to make is whether or not you want a coach that’s based locally or remote. Some people work fine with someone that is virtual while others prefer to have an in-person approach. There are pros and cons to both, so it truly is up to your preference. 

While searching for a performance coach, keep an eye out for people who specialize in areas that apply to your goals, not all of them will explicitly have performance coach in their listed title. For instance, if you want to switch things up at work, look for career transition or life coaches who can support you during the time of change. 

If you’d like to work with me as your performance coach, you can contact me to see if I’m currently accepting new clients. You can also book a complimentary 30-minute call with me to discuss whether or not performance coaching is the right strategy for you or your business.

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