Open Letter: What is The Role of Coaches During this COVID-19 Crisis?

Message from The Coaching Tools Team to YOU (all working remotely now!)

Dear Fellow Coach!

We hope you're staying safe. Here at The Coaching Tools Company, we have been thinking how we can creatively and best support you - coaches - and the larger world as we navigate these strange and challenging times.

Here are some of the things we're hard at work on (coming very soon!):

  1. A Coaches Care Package with specific resources to help you and your clients.
  2. An Article with practical things YOU can do to work ON your business during this challenging time.
  3. A Resources Page - with links to helpful apps, resources and articles to help navigate our lives and businesses during this crisis.

Because there is a lot of uncertainty about what we should (and shouldn't) do, both in our personal and work lives. How on earth do we run a business in these unprecedented times?

No-one knows how long this situation will last, although it's likely to be measured in months.

There is however one certainty.

This. Will. End.

And at some point we will return to (a new) normal. Now that's a whole other angle - what will the world be like when this is over? Who will have businesses, jobs, homes - and who will not? The biggest corporations will survive and maybe even grow (Amazon, Google, Netflix, Apple) even AirBnB still have so much money they're looking at buying up smaller businesses right now.

But what about everyone else? The general public? Hourly paid workers? Solopreneurs? The small business owners? The medium-sized business owners?

Some businesses will come out stronger, others will disappear. But first we have to get through this.

So where does this leave us as coaches?

What is The Role of Coaches During this Crisis?

As coaches, we help people create better lives, careers, relationships and more. We help people take better care of themselves, connect with their values and have more fulfilled and meaningful lives and careers.

Your Coaching Skills and Practices are needed RIGHT NOW!

The general public - your clients, fans and followers - could really benefit from someone who helps them look objectively at their fears, look ahead and consider the bigger picture, live their values, even set goals -  and create a silver lining to all these clouds.

Living our values - whatever our life situation - could be the single most important thing any of us can do right now.

Do Something, Anything!

Like many others, I have felt waves of fear and anxiety - because it's hard to sit there and wait, feeling powerless and uncertain.

No-one likes losing their autonomy - in fact it's one of Dr Karl Albrecht's 5 types of fears.

So, to help us feel more empowered we need to DO something, anything. And that applies to us coaches just as much to our fans and followers.

Your PERSONAL Role in this Crisis?

Your first priority is to take care of yourself and your family emotionally and financially, as best you can. These are the two biggest challenges we all face right now. And to look out for our neighbours.

Your WORK Role in this Crisis:

We all have better things to do than panic right now! As people who work in the self-development industry, now is our time to shine! We have a growth mindset and we have tools and the skillset to help.

Here are 2 Big Things You Can Do as a Coach:

1) Be a leader and role model for others!

Reach out to the people who follow you, and see what you can do to take care of them. Be a role model in what you post and share, and be a leader by offering support and helping people see a picture beyond the end of this crisis.

Not only will this help others, but it will pull you into a better, more positive place too. Rather than watching endless news streams and working ourselves up into worry and panic, you can focus on the big picture. The vast majority of people stuck at home because of COVID-19 have access to the internet. And whether you offer live video interaction, webinars, articles, uplifting and helpful social media posts - this is the time to show people what you are made of. And it's bigger and sterner stuff than you think! Step up - and be all of who you are.

2) Take care of your business!

There will be some people willing to pay for coaching right now - especially if "the price is right". So you could consider offering special pricing and packages to acknowledge that money may be tight for a lot of people right now.

If you can afford to (remember this is like advertising - raising your brand awareness) you could also offer free coaching sample sessions. I recommend offering a specific type of session that might be related to these unusually stressful times:

  1. You could help people capitalise on opportunities they wouldn't normally have (time to learn a new skill, spring cleaning their home or lives)
  2. You can help people solve the new problems they have (managing children at home full-time, worrying, how to stay positive/active)

You can also use this time to take care of loose ends, get deeply into and finish projects, get organized, create content/products and as Jennifer Britton mentioned in her recent article on remote working challenges, now is a great time to revisit and clarify your business vision.

Yes, much of this work is not going to be financially rewarding (at least for now). But the work you put into taking care of your business now is going to pay dividends later. This crisis will end, and when it does you'll have a finished website or you'll have learned how to use Instagram or Facebook or you'll have a new program to offer or a filing system for your office to save you time - or all of these!


"When written in Chinese, the word 'crisis' is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity." John F. Kennedy

What is the purpose of your business? Now is a great time to think about - and get super-clear on this. How do you serve your clients? And how can you serve them during this crisis?

Finally, WASH your hands thoroughly and OFTEN. INCREASE your focus. Be your BEST self. LIVE your values. Stay SAFE. Be KIND to yourself and others. And keep your eye on the END-GAME - soon this will (literally) be a part of history!

Love, Emma-Louise

Comment below to inspire others by sharing what you're doing to help your family, community, fans & clients!
If we get enough comments we might even turn it into an article to inspire people further!

Emma-Louise Elsey Headshot

Contributing Author:

Emma-Louise Elsey has been coaching since 2003 and is the Founder of The Coaching Tools Company and Fierce 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 for coaches, plus 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 >>


    • Emma-Louise

      Dear Joy, that is so lovely to hear 🙂 Thank-you for taking the time to comment, I appreciate you. Warmly, Emma-Louise

  1. Rochelle Goolsby

    Before this season of difficulty, I had personally involved myself with a ministry that put out a challenge to join them in a 40 day 'NEGATIVITY FAST' , in other words, a 'POSITIVITY FEAST'. The purpose being to change negative self talk and expression to a postive outlook and expression. The ministry provides an online daily declaration to speak out loud. As a faith based Educational Certified Professional Coach I have passed on this very edifying practice to my clients. This type of affirmation declaration self talk radically changes our outlook on these most difficult circumstances. So for this challenging time I will leave you with a declaration I proclaim regularly: My God has not given me a spirit of FEAR, but of LOVE, POWER and a SOUND MIND; THEREFORE I AM A CONDUENT OF LOVE BY OPERATING IN MY PERSONAL POWER WITH INTENTIONAL RIGHT THINKING. 'NO FEAR HERE!"
    Thank you so much for always providing coaches with great resources and inspiration.
    Blessings and Wisdom,

    • Carmel Forest Lake

      Dear Emma-Louise,

      Thanks, for all the truly inspirational information to assist me. I appreciate it.
      warmly Carmel

      • Emma-Louise

        Dear Carmel, you are most welcome 🙂 Thank-you for taking the time to comment! Warmly, Emma-Louise

    • Emma-Louise

      Dear Rochelle, what a lovely idea - a Positivity FEAST! Thank-you so much for sharing what YOU are doing during this challenging time! Warmly, Emma-Louise

  2. Julie Newton

    Thank you this article was so valuable to read. I have created a small face book group called abundant seeds of change. I have posted one small paragraph or so with one or two videos related to the subject. The idea to facilitate peoples focus on something positive for a short while. After reading this I am feeling inspired to think of a temporary niche for this time. Because I have learned so many things that can help people at this time, I will come up with something that is reasonable in price or free and that will facilitate people to manage this time.

  3. Loren

    Not only have I been listening to my inner thoughts, but I have listened to and encouraged others to do the same to release of the negativity and focus on positives. Your “Spring clean your life” worksheet was quite helpful with this and provided that path for individuals to get rid of ‘garbage’, get creative, and start something they never thought of. As coaches, while we listen to others we must listen to ourselves as well. Blessings...

  4. Cliona Molloy

    Dear Emma-Louise and Team a big THANKS to all of You for your generosity of time, attention to quality and sharing spirit in these and indeed, all times. I use my Coaching Skills in my Work as a Community Worker but also in my conversations and support of others in every and any opportunity. Since this Crisis began I have been sharing/gifting simple Mindfulness practices through little audios and on Zoom. This totally pushed my personal comfort zones! I like the personal contact and wondered about my ability to transition, I won't claim to be a virtual wonder:):) but, I am good enough and the sharing is making People feel better. This level of change requires that we step up and be creative in how we do what we do. Where there is will there is a way and thanks again to you Guys for sharing more and new ways for me to help others.

    • Emma-Louise

      Dear Cliona, that is so great to hear! To be successful in business, we absolutely need to push our comfort zones - even I STILL have to do it! So, step up, be creative, show who you are!!! Warmly, Emma-Louise

  5. Lakeisha

    Thank you for this article. My family and I are making sure to get lots of sun and pace ourselves with all of the variables presented. We also have several times in a day to come together and pray and play.

    • Emma-Louise

      Dear Lakeisha, lovely to 'see' you again! It sounds like you have a good plan and structure to support your family 🙂
      Warmly, Emma-Louise

  6. Emmanuel H Llenos

    I'm still learning to become a good recovery coach to help more suffering addicts recover in life. I believe that life will indeed get better ♥️

  7. Dennis

    Thank you so much for this article, this inspires me to go full-out and inspire people as well. For me, I am starting my To-BE List, this is the underlying reason for my To DO list. Cheers!

  8. Abo fasel

    Dear Emma
    Today you rewarded me twice first joining me your community second your generous gift.

    Thank you very much

  9. Coach Carla

    I stumbled upon your amazing portal today! Thank God, I've been tossing and turning in my sleep trying to figure out what is next and how I can take my coaching consultancy to the next level during this season. This article spoke to me personally as I'm in the midst of writing copy for my website, which is proving challenging - nevertheless I've given myself a deadline and hold myself accountable that the job will get done, so thank you again.

    I feel blessed to be amongst so many coaches!


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