Prior to starting at Booth, I had was skeptical of career coaching. Isn’t it enough that I have people who have “made it” to admire and emulate? And what could someone who doesn’t even know-know me tell me about my career and goals that I don’t already know? Despite these feelings, I decided to give the coaching at E/W Career Services a shot as part of my LEAD Debrief meeting, following up on my LAUNCH experience. From that experience, I quickly learned that I had been thinking about the benefits of coaching the wrong way. Nowadays, I’m in Career Services for coaching once or twice a quarter!
I have found coaching to be helpful in a few key ways:
1. Gaining access to assessment tools and having someone with deep knowledge on those tools to interpret and reflect on the results with you.
When I shared with my career coach that I have, at times, struggled with certain communication scenarios in the office, she recommended that I take the Forté Institute Communication Style report. My results effectively captured instances where I tend to thrive (and settings where I may become demotivated) when communicating with colleagues in the office, and the test proved to be a useful resource for me to become more self-aware of how I tend to respond to certain environments and ways to course-correct when issues arise.
This is just one of the many helpful assessments that your career coach at Booth may point you to based on the kind of coaching you are looking for.
2. Your coach can provide you with resources to structure your thoughts on your career and next steps for during and after your time at Booth.
Maybe you are trying to decide between a few different avenues to potentially take your career. Or perhaps you just have no idea what you would like to do next.
Your coach can provide you with spreadsheet trackers, organizers that provide a framework to reflect on your past experiences, and more to help guide and prioritize your thoughts. That said, your coach doesn’t do that work for you, but rather he/she can help you to tease out important considerations based on your values and objectives to think about your career plans.
3. You can add another person to your network who can keep you accountable in your pursuit of your career goals.
Sure, it’s possible that you have already enlisted your friends, family, significant other, colleague, Booth classmates, and personal mentors to make sure you stay on track. However, your career coach at Booth engages you in a different capacity than those members of your network. Since it’s your career coach’s job is to advise people on their careers, he/she has seen numerous people over an extended period that his/her pattern-finding skills have been well-honed and put your coach in a good position to have a sense of where you are tracking toward your goals.
After meeting with my coach several times already over the course of the year, I can candidly share that she has become a trusted mentor and something of a career confidant for me, especially when it comes to my feelings of uncertainty and insecurity throughout my career development journey.
Klariza Alvaran is works in marketing at Tempus, while doing marketing on the side. She enjoys writing sci-fi, crocheting hats, and making music.