Executive coaching is a relationship in which a consultant helps a client achieve a mutually identified set of goals in order to improve his or her job effectiveness and job satisfaction. The focus is on effective behavior in a professional setting. If you’re thinking about using an executive coach, here are some of the common traps people fall into and some ideas for avoiding those traps. These are not, I’m sorry to say, the only misconceptions people can have about coaching, but they are 9 of the common ones. The traps are in quotes at the start of each section.

“I know what I need to work on.” Benjamin Franklin said “Three things are extremely hard—steel, a diamond, and to know oneself.” College students can predict the longevity of their roommates’ relationships much better than they can predict the longevity of their own relationships. Navy officers can predict which of their peers will be promoted early but can’t predict their own promotion.”

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