How can you work effectively with a career coach in Atlanta, or in your local area? You can leverage a career coach from literally anywhere in the world via an internet connection and a computer. And with today’s technology, most career coaches are equipped to work with you virtually. However, what if you would prefer to work with a local career coach? How do you know if you want to meet with them in person versus virtually? And what are the pros and cons of meeting virtually versus face-to-face with your coach?
To find the right coach, first, compile a list of local career coaches in Atlanta or otherwise and write down your list of criteria. To find a local career coach, you need to do your homework. We recommend asking friends and family first for recommendations or referrals first. As with anything else, getting a suggestion from a trusted person in your network can help you more quickly identify the right career coach to work with, if you get a referral from someone who had a positive experience with that coach. Read each coaches’ website and while doing so, identify the criteria you want in your coach. What are you looking for in your coach? Possible criteria could be:
- A certain type of background or experience.
- A certain area of expertise.
- The number of years of experience.
- Satisfaction rating with their clients.
- How many people they’ve worked with.
- Their ideal client profile.
- Their coaching philosophy.
If your questions are answered online and you’re ready to go- great! Find out from them how you can get started. If not, set up a time to talk with them. Most coaches will give you a few minutes of their time, or a complimentary consultation, in order to find out more about their services.
If you aren’t able to find any referrals, turn to the internet. Try a google search for “career coach in Atlanta” or your local location, and visit the websites of the coaches that come up from your search. Another great resource is sites like:
- The National Career Development Association (ncda.org)
- The National Board of Certified Counselors (nbcc.org)
- The International Coach Federation (coachfederation.org)
These websites allow you to search for career counselors in their databases by state. These websites also help you to make sure that the career coaches that you are looking into have credentials. You could also check in with local universities, like Georgia Tech, or the University of Georgia (for Atlanta-based coaches), to see if they have a list of career coaches that they recommend.
Try to refine your search down to three local coaches you think would be a good fit for you, read about them on their websites and peruse their social media to get a sense of their style. Then if you still need more information, contact them for an interview and follow the steps above. You can also follow the tips in this article about how to pick a career coach.
Once you have found your local career coach, how can you make the most of that relationship? Consider the following three ways to leverage your coaching relationship with a local coach.
Connect with your coach in person. If you would prefer to meet with your career coach in person, obviously a local coach is the way to go. Some people are fine with, or even prefer, talking on the phone or via Skype. Others feel strongly about an in-person connection. If you want to meet in person (even if it’s just for the first session), let your coach know that up front to ensure they offer in-person sessions.
Most career coaches, however, understand that many clients would like to meet them in person and they should have a suggested meeting place that will work for them – either at their office or another place appropriate for a career coaching session like a quiet coffee shop. Don’t be afraid to bring this up to your career coach. Some clients feel comfortable moving to phone or Internet sessions after a few coaching sessions in person, but most coaches will be OK meeting locally with you as long as you need.
When you should meet with your local career coach versus over the phone. There are certain circumstances where it’s especially helpful and advantageous to meet with your career coach in person if they are local. For example, if you’re working on your job search, your career coach can help you work on your appearance and body language. You can have practice sessions with your career coach. A video Skype session can work just as well, but if your coach is local, consider choosing those sessions when you’re prepping for job interviews for in-person time. Even if you don’t meet in person throughout the entire coaching relationship, meeting in person for these sessions can prove greatly beneficial.
Another great circumstance for working with a local career coach would be when trying to land a job promotion or attending a networking event. The same principles would apply. Your career coach can help you to make sure you will be at the top of your game before going into your interview, networking event, or performance review.
Ask them for local connections. Another advantage to a local career coach in Atlanta, or your location, is that they will have a local network when it comes to job hunting. Keep in mind your coach may or may not be willing to provide you with connections (we are happy to do so for our clients), but the worst thing they can tell you is “no”. It’s worth asking since it could be part of the value of the relationship. Atlanta has a small-town, friendly way of doing things and networking and connections are very important here, so don’t be afraid to talk to your career coach about helping you with networking possibilities.
Local connections could be useful for conducting informational interviews, connecting with others who work in the career you are considering, or for your job search. It is most likely that your career coach has worked with other clients who live locally and therefore could help you to network with others who have had success stories, others who are working in the job market you are pursuing, or in a similar kind of business that you are interested in. If they are willing to help you network with them, this could help you to decide if the organization or career path is really a good fit for you.
However, it is important to remember that if your coach does agree to help you with local networking connections, they are not job recruiters. It is their job to coach you and to help you decide what kind of a career or job would be a good fit for you, but not to place you in a job. So while they may have client connections in organizations that may interest you, they don’t necessarily know what job openings are available.
Career coaching with local coaching firm in Atlanta, Halliecrawford.com. If you are searching for a local career coach in Atlanta, make sure that Hallie Crawford’s team is on your list. We are different from other career coaching organizations because we use a holistic process to help you discover who you are as a person and a career that you will happy with long-term. We have a tried and tested process that has a 90% satisfaction rate, and we are flexible with our process to make sure that the tools we use are benefitting our client’s personal needs. All of our coaches have had successful careers before becoming career coaches, so we have a vast knowledge of the business world and tips to help you be successful.