No, You Can’t Have Coaching!

I suddenly realised that  I have turned away quite a few clients over the last three months. No, I haven’t suddenly turned into a prima donna (well, I don’t think I have) but I have had several enquiries from people who actually weren’t in the right place to take advantage of coaching; for me to have taken them on would have been to have taken advantage of them.

In each case the people concerned were in quite distressed states. I am not qualified as a medic but I have worked in the field of psychiatry and  can usually tell when someone is depressed as opposed to miserable or fed up. I always offer a free session before anyone signs up for coaching (in fact, if I don’t know the individual,  I insist on it as all good coaches do).

That session is a two way process. It’s for me to find out what the person is looking to achieve from coaching and for them to check out if my style suits them.


And just lately I have been speaking to people who are clearly very distressed and looking for a very quick fix. I think this is a sign of the times we’re living in. Sometimes coaching can provide a quick answer but not when, as in these cases, the problems are deep seated. In each case the person has been very vulnerable and I have advised contact with a GP, and recommended action where they don’t need to pay a fee. When they have been insistent that I am just what they need, I have asked them to check out with a doctor and call me in a month’s time if they still think coaching will be helpful.

It’s great when they come back on a more even keel and better prepared to get the most of the coaching experience. And when they don’t, I just hope that they have received appropriate help and no longer need coaching, and have not been taken in by some of the spurious claims made for miracle cures.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t just abandon them; I offer my support and advice as far as I am able but I am very clear that sometimes coaching is not the answer!

If you are considering coaching, there is more on this subject here.


Posted on October 26th, 2010 by

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