I hired a career coach for the first time last fall as I was considering a major career change. I was at a juncture in my life where I was really unhappy in my current position, and I wanted to talk with someone who did not know me and who did not have preconceived ideas and expectations of me. However, your purposes and reasons for hiring a career coach or counselor may be very different. In the career development world, there is sometimes a bit of a divide between career counselors and career coaches. Job or career coaches are generally focused on helping you articulate and accomplish goals.
The best career professionals are the ones not hung up on the differences between counseling and coaching.
Also, consider the credentials of the prospective coach or counselor and see what kinds of requirements the person had to meet in order to receive the certification and how those align with their specialties. Determine your purposes for hiring a career coach or counselor and the type of approach that is important to you.
I found my career coach through a local meet up group of PhD holders who were not in academia.
The National Career Development Association (NCDA) is one of the main career development professional associations, and they have a Find a Counselor page on their website.
If you are affiliated with a college or university, most have a career centers where they may offer counseling or coaching, or they may be able to provide you with a referral. LDS Employment Services could also be potentially helpful; Melanie used her local center right after grad school and found them helpful in some things, but the strengths of each employment center probably depend largely on the staff. The best coaches or counselors will not have you commit to paying for a series of meetings until you have had at least an initial consultation. Based on this phone conversation, we decided that we were both interested in continuing forward with the process, so she sent me a series of really in-depth questions to answer and some assessments to take. In addition to in-person meetings, you might communicate with your coach via phone or email, either at your own initiative or at the coach’s invitation.
Of course the coach’s skill is important, but part of the success of the session depends on the client. Also, keep in mind that there are thousands and thousands of jobs out there and industries are changing every day. The career coach did not wave a magic wand or gaze into a crystal ball and say “This is the job for you!” (even though I sometimes wish this had happened!). Your personal experience with a career coach or counselor will vary depending on your purposes and the professional you select, but the option is definitely one to consider if you’re looking for some more personalized direction and support. For those of us looking for career counselors or coaches, there is a great opportunity at People Helping People. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. GTP Designs created an informational website for Howard Nippert's Professional Coaching For Runners. Howard Nippert's Professional Coaching For Runners offers no-nonsense, no-gimmicks coaching for runners and ultra-marathoners from all ability levels at distances from 800m to 100 miles.
Every teacher in every content area, and every student is affected by the new Common Core State Standards which emphasize writing significantly more than ever before. We have designed our materials to be used in conjunction with our training workshops and coaching.
The Write Tools specializes in providing training and coaching customized to fit your needs. Effective professional development involves in-depth, on-going training combined with on-site coaching, grade-level meetings, and demonstration lessons.


2 hour Parent Presentation (these are scheduled while our trainers are in town, often after school or in the evening.
3 days of training including 2 days of Narrative Training, and 1 day of Responding to Literature training, customized for Elementary audiences.
3 days of training with 2 days of Narrative Training, customized for Middle School, and High School audiences, and 1 day of in-depth training in Responding to Literature.
Onsite coaching goes hand in hand with training, offering long-term support that yields sustainable results. Feel confident knowing that all coaching is done onsite by a TWT trainer who has spent years applying The Write Tools’ strategies in their own classroom.
Partner with us to provide the missing piece to your literacy instruction — a strong writing program.
The Write Tools has helped schools around the nation improve their writing instruction, increase student engagement, and improve test scores with Consistent, Systematic, Explicit Writing Instruction that includes Common Language, Common Strategies, and a Common Vision. Why The Write Tools?The Write Tools training, coaching and materials equip teachers with comprehensive, progressive, research-based strategies to teach their students how to write with rich language and well-developed thoughts. And while I am still in the midst of figuring things out, I found my work with the coach to be incredibly valuable. I was also looking for someone to hold me accountable for completing tasks like conducting informational interviews and crafting a new resume. Perhaps you are looking for specifics about options that exist in your field, or you need an extra push or insight into your strengths and weaknesses, or you want help in defining your career goals and path. Career counselors have a counseling degree and licensure and feel that they have a holistic focus. They’ll work with you to develop a job search plan, improve your resume, and feel more comfortable with networking. Good career counselors will incorporate elements of coaching, while good coaches will take into account that there are a variety of factors that influence a person’s career decisions. So it is important to look for a coach who has a specialty, maybe someone who specifically focuses on helping former or trained academics find careers outside of academia, for example, or a counselor who has worked with women who are on-ramping back to the workforce. This career coach had conducted a seminar with this group, so I was introduced to her through this network. She asked me more questions based on my responses to first set of questions—and she really made me answer them.
An assessment or even a career coach can’t possibly give you “THE” answer of the one career or job that is right for you.
Career coaching was a lot of (not easy) work, but it provided me with the tools, support, structure, and time to consider my career with focused intent and purpose. We work specially with women to help them identify their skills and find not just the right job, but the right career path. In addition to information about available coaching services, the site also provides resources to athletes and runners.
Nippert is a world-class ultra-runner and is an 8-time member of the United States Track and Field team. The Write Tools training and coaching equip teachers with the necessary skills to implement a school- or district-wide approach to writing instruction that is clearly aligned to CCSS. The Write Tools’ strategies will yield powerful results, but only if teachers know how to use them, when to use them, and are provided the opportunity to practice using them initially through in-depth training sessions, and later with a caring coach to provide constructive and insightful feedback. Our training and coaching combines engaging workshops with follow-up demonstration lessons, coaching, and grade-level meetings to provide the in-depth staff development that will make your school the leader in writing instruction. The Write Tools wants to build on-going relationships with schools and districts to offer this type of successful professional development. Our strategies enable teachers to differentiate instruction for all levels of learners, and compliment any writing program already in place.


Lastly, I wanted to meet with someone who had previously worked with individuals who had transitioned out academia—which is what I was considering. All of these reasons (and many more) are very valid reasons for hiring a career coach or counselor. A counselor might lead you through exercises such as talking about what you liked to do for play as a child or have you map out the professions of your family members going back a few generations. A really good career coach or counselor should not be afraid to turn you away if your needs do not align with the coach’s strengths and areas of expertise. Or do you want a coach who takes a more holistic view and considers how your career shapes the kind of life you want? I also checked out her website and read articles she had written, organizations that endorsed her, and viewed an interview she had given on public radio. When I gave a lukewarm response or was purposefully vague, she pushed for more clarity and specificity. Good coaches understand that their time and expertise is valuable, and even though you may feel that your specific question does not require much time, these requests can really add up and require a lot of the coach’s energy and attention.
A good career coach will help you better understand the kind of work that could be a good fit for you and teach you the tools and skills to conduct a successful job search.
Sure, I’ve spent plenty of money on stuff at Target for myself without thinking twice, but I very consciously determined that if I wanted to take my career seriously, I needed to make my career development a monetary priority, too. Instead of just landing my next job, the coach provided me with permission to really consider the type of life I wanted for myself and how my career could help shape that.
GTP Designs also worked with Nippert to create artwork for promotional apparel (long and short-sleeve technical shirts).
Nippert has finished in the top-10 at the IAU World 100Km event four times, including a 5th place finish. To that end, we offer layers of training that can be customized to fit your school or district needs. Melanie, a career counselor, provides many of the nuts and bolts about career coaching and counseling; I share a bit about my own personal process working with a career coach. Some draw their experience from a number of years as a professional in a particular field; others have gone through a certification or training program.
After I found the career coach’s website, I sent her a short email and was contacted by her assistant. I had to face some tough questions and answers—many of which I had been avoiding for a while. So while the best career coaches or counselors may be far from free, I also believe that you get what you pay for. Generally speaking, a counselor will help you focus on career development by helping you to know and understand yourself better. There isn’t one specific certification that is viewed as a guarantee of quality, but the Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDF) certification from the National Career Development Association is one of the most well-known and reputable certifications. We also did a couple of visualization exercises, had a discussion about my assessment results, and we crafted my personal vision statement together. There are tons of coaching certification programs out there, so pretty much anyone willing to put in the time and money can get certified.
She shared with me her philosophies and provided more information about the process, her experience working with people like me, and her services and fees.
I found that these meetings held me accountable, that the coach really helped me view my specific strengths in new ways, and that she assisted me in better determining and refining my priorities.



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