What is Professional Coaching?

Ashton College
4 min readSep 19, 2022


Are you someone who enjoys helping others be their best? Do you find yourself having conversations that bring together experience, advice and moving towards a solution? A career in professional coaching may be the next step for you. Completing formal training such as the Professional Coach Diploma, or coaching certification, will help prepare you with the skills, education, and confidence to launch your career as a Professional Coach.

What is professional coaching?

Professional coaching is about supporting someone to achieve personal or professional goals. A coach can help with several issues, including learning how to better work in teams, managing emotions, preparing for interviews, and getting promoted. They can also assist with navigating personal problems and completing continuing education. Coaching is about asking questions and moving through a series of conversations. Coaching allows others to be heard and for them to start where they are. Coaching supports growth, awareness, and confidence to support growth and development.

What professional coaching isn’t?

Professional coaching is not giving advice and having all the answers. A coach is not there to fix your issues or take on the role of a manager; rather, they are present to help you brainstorm possibilities and explore different avenues.

What are some benefits of Professional Coaching?

Professional coaching provides many benefits, including developing relationships, exploring different decision-making strategies, learning new perspectives, and boosting self-confidence. The following are key benefits both you and your coachee would experience:

  • Someone to hold you accountable
  • Someone to believe in you
  • Someone to brainstorm ideas with and not feel judged
  • A support system to help achieve goals and dreams
  • A sense of clarity on what to do or focus on

Professional Coaches enjoy helping others, have a passion for learning about people and their journey, and are willing to continue to improve their coaching skills to engage and deliver results.

What top three skills do you need to be a Professional Coach?

  1. Curiosity — ask questions to understand and not assume

A good coach is always curious and inquisitive because it leads to eureka moments, thoughtfulness, and clarity. Furthermore, asking questions during the coaching process builds trust and credibility between coach and client. Asking questions encourages meaningful discussion and breakthroughs or “aha” moments. Unlike mentoring where the leader provides advice, professional coaching is about having the coachee reach the awareness or insight themselves.

  1. Listening — to understand and not just to respond

Listening sounds simple yet many continue to struggle with this skill. Listening is about creating a trusting environment that encourages the coachee to share their honest thoughts and experiences. What makes this skill set difficult, is that the Coach can’t focus on solving the issue and instead listens without judgment or suggestions.

  1. Inspire action — translate a conversation into clear next steps

As a Professional Coach, your duty is to assist the coachee you’re working with in making decisions and taking action based on their skills and strengths. While it is important to brainstorm ideas, the ownership and accountability are with the coachee. It’s an amazing opportunity, and responsibility, to coach someone to believe in themselves and celebrate them along the way.

What does a day look like for a Professional Coach?

There has been a lot of interest in becoming a Professional Coach with the promise of a flexible workday and great income, which it does both. However, running a successful coaching business does require you to be business-focused and action-oriented.

While each day can look a little different, here are some of the things Professional Coaches do day-to-day:

  • Social media activities
  • Marketing and public relations
  • One-one-appointments with coaching clients
  • Developing and leading webinars
  • Learning new technology tips and tools
  • Creating content for podcasts
  • Networking and speaking events
  • Attending professional development
  • Returning phone calls and scheduling new coaching sessions
  • Reviewing and preparing for coaching sessions
  • General bookkeeping

Being a Professional Coach allows you to have a flexible schedule that where can plan around your other obligations. Maybe you prefer to start the day with yoga and then begin your workday mid-morning. Or perhaps you need to pick up children after school and need to stop working mid-afternoon. You can make it all work with good time management and the discipline to stay on track with your coaching business tasks. If running the business part is not of interest to you, you can consider hiring an intern or hire someone to help you.

Professional coaching is more than working with clients; coaches must also run the business itself. This includes handling marketing, social media, finances, and more. Whether you take care of the business side yourself or have someone help you, professional coaching is about the ability to connect with people and having a rewarding career.

Written by Jillian Gorbold