Have you seen the TV show Ted Lasso? I’m obsessed. It’s so charming. In short, the premise is that a divorcée, Rebecca Welton (Hannah Waddingham), takes over managing her ex-husbands soccer team. Rebecca decides to run it into the ground to get revenge on him for leaving her. To do this, Rebecca hires Ted Lasso (Jason Sudeikis), an American football coach, who knows nothing about soccer to coach the team. 

Of course, as it has to go for the sake of TV, [spoiler alert] Ted’s knowledge and understanding of team dynamics leads him to perform much better than anyone would have expected him to and the team begins to see success.

Why am I talking about this?

Time and time again, I see clients come to us very worried that we don’t know their particular industry or their particular career path. They want to make sure they’re going to get the help they need, and they are certain these details matter immensely. 

Wanting to make sure your coach can help you makes total sense! However, I must tell you, even for non-traditional careers, the industry is not the key factor you need to match on.

Much like Ted Lasso, we see that the basic tenets of coaching apply over and over again, regardless of industry or specific career path. 

What should I focus on for non-traditional careers?

Great question. While it is still important to find the right coach to help you navigate your career path, a great career coach will help you ensure you’re on the right path for yourself regardless of your journey – either traditional or non-traditional careers. A great career coach has universal tools and strategies that will optimize your time, help avoid missteps, big or small, and guide you to your goal – however you’re going to get there.

Here are some things to consider as you’re making the decision on the right coach for you.

Cover the Basics

First, make sure a coach is what you actually need! Here are some great tips for finding a life coach that apply here as well. You need to make sure that a coach is really what you need based on your goals, that they’re appropriately trained, that you’re both a good fit, that they have a system and processes you trust, etc. There’s a lot to consider!

Determine what your goals are

This is not a trivial question! Do you want a very tactical coach to help you with the practicalities of building a resume and networking? Do you want a strategic coach who can help you create a long-term vision and goals?

Different coaches have different strengths and can support you in different ways. By knowing what you want to get out of a coaching relationship, you can better determine the right fit for you. Ask the right questions to get the answers you are looking for.

Check your expectations

Just like professional athletes have coaches, you deserve to have the best support in your corner as well. However, just like an athletic coach can’t run laps for their team, your career coach can’t find you a new job or land you the promotion. 

It’s a common misconception that a career coach is going to get you your next job. Career coaches are not recruiters or placement agencies. We are here to help you navigate the job search process so that you can keep momentum, and avoid wasting time on steps that aren’t taking you closer to your goal.

Figure out your style

In my humble opinion, coaching style is probably the most important fit of all. The reality is, no matter how competent or knowledgeable your coach may be, if you don’t feel comfortable talking to them or getting insights, advice and assignments, you won’t make progress.

Take some time to think about the teachers, bosses, mentors, friends, and other people in your life that have been the most helpful for you. How would you describe them? For example, do you know you need some tough love? Or, on the other hand, could you use a cheerleader in your corner helping you push through the tough times? Do you do well with structure, or do you resist it?

By knowing what you respond best to, you’ll be able to select the right coach to help you navigate your non-traditional career!

So, how do you find a coach?

We think the most important part of the coach-search process is the interview. Most folks start with a search online, but then it’s imperative to get to that match. Different coaches may have their own systems they use, processes, approaches, etc. Start with a conversation. Here at Ama La Vida, we actually have a team of coaches, so you’ll only need to talk to one of our Relationship Strategists who can determine your goals, style, vision and then match you with the ideal  coach for you. If you’re ready to be matched with the career coach that will help you move your professional needle, you can book just below! We promise, these conversations are a lot of fun.

Regardless of whether you book time with us or someone else, we absolutely recommend you take the time to have a call with someone. You’re looking for a professional to meet you where you are at, with the proven processes and experience needed to guide your path, and who gives you confidence in the relationship and results. 

To sum it up

Navigating your career, any career, can be overwhelming. Non-traditional careers offer an even greater level of complexity because, well, they’re not traditional! It’s normal to feel overwhelmed or alone sometimes. Having a career coach to help you along your path can be invaluable. While it’s not necessary to find a career coach with a unique background in your career, it is absolutely important that you feel comfortable with them, their style, and their approach. Not only is it important that you find someone who sees and validates you, but who also inspires you and makes you feel safe enough to open up and trust their process.

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Libby Micheletti

Libby Micheletti is a certified Career and Lifestyle Coach with Ama La Vida. She firmly believes that your career can and should support you in a life that brings you joy and fulfillment. Libby has an MBA in Marketing and spent 10+ years in branding and marketing for Fortune 500 companies. You can find Libby on Instagram or read more about her background on ALVcoaching.com.

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