Knowing Your Worth
The Value of Executive Coaching
Last week, we spoke about mentorship and the important role mentors can play in someone’s personal and professional development. It seemed appropriate that this week, we dive into another crucially important role – an executive coach.
The world of executive coaching has undergone a staggering increase in popularity over the past few years. Factors such as the COVID-19 pandemic and The Great Resignation have greatly altered the employee-employer relationship and, in many instances, widened the skills gap in the workplace. These circumstances have left employees feeling as if they are out in the cold – many debating if they should stick it out or try to find something more fulfilling elsewhere. But there is another option for the millions of Americans in this situation, and it lies in coaching.
Making an Investment in You
Executive coaching is one of the most valuable investments you can make in yourself. It helps you understand the significance of what you bring to your organization, and also helps develop the skills that will allow you to meet your goals and advance your career further. But it’s even more than that. Coaching combines skill building with getting at the heart of what’s holding you back in setting up strategies to get “unstuck.”
Simply, executive coaches help you create outside change from the inside. They work with you to reexamine your professional narrative by taking the time to learn who you are, including your strengths and your weaknesses. Once they have a complete picture, they can provide the most individualized strategy to help you move forward by identifying what is keeping you from your full potential.
Know Your Worth
As an executive coach, I have the extraordinary ability to witness firsthand the benefits coaching has on an individual. Last year, a CFO reached out to me and asked to begin a coaching arrangement. She had seen a colleague use executive coaching to achieve major advancement in their professional development and she wanted to see if she could obtain similar results. She was ready to quit a job she loved because she didn’t feel valued or that she was getting paid what she was worth. She was in need of validation, direction, correction, encouragement, and the knowledge that dysfunctional experiences are not failures.
We began weekly coaching sessions, starting with examining what was important to her and her goals. The timeline for the goals was approximately six months (tip – goals must always be attached to dates). Her goals were:
- Establish her value,
- Earn respect, and
- Negotiate a raise.
Each week, we discussed her stories, her disappointments, and her vulnerabilities. I worked with her to transform her perspective to view these instances as normal – just like everyone else goes through, and to feel capable and empowered. There were some weeks where we struggled a great deal, but struggle is always a part of the process. Learning to handle tough times and emotions is essential for life, both in and out of the workplace. It’s all about shifting that perspective and learning to create better boundaries. On weeks when we’d make strong progress, we emphasized keeping that momentum to work toward something new.
After six months of coaching, my client was able to achieve all of the goals she set at the beginning of our time together. She let her company know that she loved her job, but that she would need to be paid fairly or would be forced to move on. She even provided a specific number because she had the confidence to know she was worth it. Her company agreed to her raise, and she is now getting paid what she deserves as CFO. She also feels that she is more respected as a leader, collaborator, and strategist, and is better at handling her responsibilities.
I am honored that I was able to help her not only stay in a role that she loved, but also help her get to a place of peace and happiness – those results extend far beyond the office. We have now set new goals focused on company growth and corporate standards. It has been a pleasure to watch her grow both personally and professionally and I am thrilled to see what she will do in the future.
Keep in mind that there is never a one-size-fits-all solution to reaching professional goals. Everyone has different strengths, that must be amplified, and weaknesses, that must be improved. Coaching can be hard work, but don’t we have to work for anything of true value? And what is more valuable than shifting your perspective when you need to, developing your skills, and finding the peace, happiness, and value you truly deserve?
Barker Associates provides executive coaching to CFOs and other C-Suite executives. We provide the guidance you need to navigate your professional development. If you need assistance, or have any other questions, please click here to schedule a 30-minute consultation at a rate of $100.