Like most other industries, executive coaching is experiencing an evolution in methodology spurred along by advances in digital technology. With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, shifting to a new way of coaching is now less of an option and more of a necessity.
Executive coaching is in demand and appears to have a strong future. To stay competitive, many leadership consultants will have to adopt virtual coaching into their business model. This article explores the benefits of remote coaching, how to do it effectively, and five essential tools to help you be successful.
Why should leadership consultants look to virtual coaching?
With social distancing becoming a requirement to curtail the spread of COVID-19, executive coaches of all types are challenged to embrace new ways of conducting their practice. Many will have to relinquish long-held beliefs that effective coaching can only be achieved with some form of in-person interaction.
Thankfully, coaches who have already implemented virtual coaching programs can provide vital tips and feedback to help others successfully make the transition. Below are several benefits leadership consultants and other types of coaches have experienced by moving to remote coaching:
Greater scale and access. Technology is allowing executive coaches to efficiently and effectively reach a vaster amount of people – not just within an organization that a coach already has as a client, but also new prospective clients around the globe.
Reduced cost. Typical costs involved in coaching are mitigated when sessions are conducted remotely. Such expenses can include; travel, lodging, meals, additional staff, and prep time. With the rise of artificial intelligence and chatbot technology, some coaches have even successfully automated parts of their coaching program for extra efficiency.
Improved outcomes. Technology for conducting virtual coaching comes in a range of offerings, the best platforms allow for the advanced tracking of vital analytics and the gathering of crucial data points. This information empowers executive coaches to provide highly informed guidance and more specified learning and development goals.
Coaches around the world use our software, Teamscope to gather vital client insights that lead to more impactful results for their clients. Learn how today by booking a demo.
Here are several tips to ensure you run a great virtual coaching program.
Ensure conversations follow a framework. With remote coaching, both coach and client are often in settings that are familiar and thus more comfortable, for this reason, time can slip away, and conversations can meander. It’s essential to approach virtual coaching with the same adherence to structure and milestones as you would with any other type of coaching. Implement a process for guiding conversations along so that every session meets its determined goal.
Be flexible with the coaching medium. Executive coach Ed Batista suggests coaches remain flexible when it comes to the choice of coaching medium. Some clients will be more comfortable with video or phone sessions, while others may prefer email. What’s important is to choose a medium that’s “right for the situation” rather than having you or your client automatically dictate what to use.
Let clients know they are valued. One of the simplest ways you can show clients and members of a team that you value them is to offer one-one meetings and, to allow for additional flex time during regular sessions. It’s also a good idea to encourage client questions and to ask for feedback about what was covered during a session.
Use the right technology. Nothing will send your virtual coaching program into a nosedive faster than using an inferior technology stack. A poor choice will impact the quality of your business as well as the quality of the coaching you provide for your clients. Avoid being cheap here, but also select apps and services with a solid reputation. See the suggestions we’ve made below!
5 tools to help you be a great virtual coach.
Teamscope for deep client insights
Teamcsope is our software and the secret weapon of top leadership consultants who want to wow their coaching clients. The platform is a talent analytics tool that uses scientific testing and AI-assisted data to create rich client profiles. These profiles then provide you with a deeper understanding of your client’s motivations, aspirations and capabilities, making Teamscope indispensable for planning learning and development goals.
You can get a closer look at Teamscope today by booking a FREE 20-minute demo.
Calendly for automated scheduling
Automated scheduling is a critical component of any coaching program, and one of the most popular platforms for this function is Calendly. Calendly is feature-rich, sends automated confirmation and reminder messages, and reflects the scheduler’s time zone as they select a day and time from your calendar. It also syncs with Google Calendar as a bonus.
Zoom is one of the most popular video conferencing applications on the planet. Its star has risen substantially as people across the world have adopted the software to keep in contact during the COVID pandemic. For this reason, many of your coaching clients will already be familiar with the app. Zoom offers excellent quality, affordability, and ease-of-use as attractive features.
Blue Yeti Microphone
Some may ask why not rely on the existing microphone in your laptop – it simply comes down to quality. The Blue Yeti microphone is a favourite of coaches and online educators across the Internet. It’s even listed as a suggested microphone by Udemy, a site that helps educators sell and distribute virtual courses. Blue Yeti consistently receives 4-5 star reviews, and it’s reasonably priced while offering studio-quality audio.
Logitech HD Pro Webcam
Just like your microphone, you may want to consider upgrading your laptop’s camera to improve the quality of video sessions. A popular, cost-effective option is the Logitech HD Pro Webcam. It’s a universal plugin-play piece of hardware requiring minimal set-up while providing high-quality video.
If you liked this article, we want to help you further by showing you how top leadership consultants use our software to get incredible results. Click below to book a 20-minute demo with Teamscope today!