7 More Career Coaching Tools and Ideas for Clients Who Have Absolutely No Idea What They Want!

new career coaching tools - boy wants to be a rockstarThis article follows on from 7 Career Coaching Tools and Ideas For Clients Who Have Absolutely No Idea What They Want!

So, here are 7 MORE Career Coaching Tools and Ideas for the client who wants a new career - but has absolutely no idea where to start!

  1. 'Future' Self Exercises and Inquiries Part 3. (Parts 1 and 2 can be found here) A final idea is to ask them to write out what a day in their ideal work day would look like. The more detail they go into the better - you can ask them to use their 5 senses, to start from the moment they wake up and until they get home at night. How they feel is just as important as what they are doing. Use the 5 Ws - Who (are they working with)? What are they doing? Why are they doing it? Where are they doing it? When (or How often) are they doing it? Then, explore that together for themes, values and ideas.
  2. 'Needs' Work. We know about values, but what about needs? When we don't meet our needs, we often sabotage ourselves as we try to meet them unconsciously. And sometimes we really limit ourselves when we expect our 'work' to meet all our needs. So, one way to get underneath to the client's real needs is to ask the question "Why?" First ask what they would like their 'work' to give them. Then for each answer, ask "Why do you want that? What does that  give you?" and keep asking "Why and What does that give you?" until you get to the real underlying need - which is likely to be value words like love, respect, connection, order. Now your client can find ways to meet those needs in LIFE instead of the workplace and possibly open up new career ideas and possibilities.
  3. A great follow-on or addition to simple strengths and weaknesses is a 360 degree review (we offer a simple 360 review exercise here) where they ask other people for honest feedback on their strengths and weaknesses. They can use this career coaching tool even if they're not currently working by asking friends and family as well as past colleagues/employers they might still be in touch with.
  4. Don't Stop at Strengths, Identify their Talents! (the things they do naturally and come really easily to them). A great resource for this is Marcus Buckingham's "Now Discover Your Strengths". He describes talent as, "Any recurring pattern of thought, feeling, or behaviour that can be productively applied." Therefore being charming, persistent or responsible (and even being stubborn or nervous if it means you stick to your guns or worry and identify problems!) are TALENTS. So, once your client has identified their talents you can ask, "Where would this talent be useful?", "In what industry, job role or career could this talent be considered helpful?"
  5. Find out what their new career MUST and must NOT have. MUST haves are their 'minimum requirements' and 'Must NOT haves' are things that help rule out unsuitable careers. One way to kickstart this process is with The Love and Loathe List where they identify what they love and loathe in their current job - and then spend time reflecting and learning from their answers.
  6. What Makes My Heart Sing? This simple tool is inspiring and uplifting. Used as is, it is helpful to boost your client's energy and for them to see that happiness is much easier to achieve than they think. To turn this into a career coaching tool, ask them to complete it as "What Makes My Heart Sing at Work?". Then when you review the exercise with your client, this helps with work values, elements to include in their work-life and may even give more direct clues and pointers as to possible careers.
  7. Finally, encourage them to try new things, activities, courses, or even take up an old hobby to stimulate their minds and imagination. Anything new or different will get them creating new neural pathways and opening their minds.

And remember that sometimes a client will have great ideas or know what they want to do - but be afraid to say it aloud or go for it. Our job may be to help them see the truth that is already there - and support and encourage them to follow it.

"When making a decision of minor importance, I have always found it advantageous to consider all the pros and cons. In vital matters, however, such as the choice of a mate or a profession, the decision should come from the unconscious, from somewhere within ourselves. In the important decisions of personal life, we should be governed, I think, by the deep inner needs of our nature." Sigmund Freud

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Contributing Author:

Emma-Louise Elsey has been coaching since 2003 and is the Founder of The Coaching Tools Company and Fierce Kindness.com. She's passionate about coaching and personal development. Originally a project and relationship manager for Fortune 500 companies she combined her love of coaching, creativity and systems to create over 100 brandable coaching tools, forms and exercises including 30+ completely free coaching tools. She now serves coaches and the coaching world through her exclusive newsletter for coaches, Coaches Helping Coaches Facebook Group and many other great tools, resources and ideas for your coaching toolbox. The Coaching Tools Company is an official ICF Business Solutions Partner.

Learn more about Emma-Louise & see all their articles here >>

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