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Being a True, Supportive Coach

Do recognize all of the emotional strain that_______ is going through. Recognize and appreciate his/her vulnerability. Appreciate_______ 's fears and frustrations.

Do accept_______ for just exactly who he/she is and where he/she is in the job-seeking process. Try to objectively observe_______ in the process of looking for a job and be as nonjudgmental as you possibly can.

Do play the role of good coach by helping_______ in the process of finding a job. Help him or her write out goals. Discuss with him/her how you can help with those goals. Help each other. You will help_______ feel better about him or herself if you are giving him/her chance to help you.

Do help_______ with recognizing what kind of personality he/she is as I discussed in Chapter 1. The more you help_______ realize his or her own personality traits and how he or she will perform in interviewing situation, the better he/she will do in the interviews.

Do help_______ research all of the potential organizations that he or she might contact in looking for a job. This can be a tremendous help to _because he/she won't feel alone doing this task. On top of that, two or even three of you can simply do more research and get more information so that_______ has more opportunities available. The Internet is a phenomenal tool for doing that kind of research. Not only will you find information about companies, but websites will often list the managers in organizations that_______ should be contacting.

In one of the previous chapters, I instructed_, if he or she is out of work, to spend most of the day cold calling organizations in order to get appointments. You can facilitate his or her making those appointments by writing out a list of companies, names of managers, and phone numbers so he or she can spend more time on the phone getting appointments rather than researching. This kind of help can have a major impact on_______ 's success in finding a job.

And another great help is to research all kinds of advertisements on the Internet, in the newspaper, and trade publications—frankly, anywhere. The research shouldn't be focused primarily on advertisements for only the kind of experience that_______ has. As I mentioned in a previous chapter, companies or industries that are expanding positions in one arena may very well be expanding them in another as well. So, just because a firm might be advertising for something that_______ isn't, doesn't mean that_______ shouldn't contact this firm to see if someone of his or her skill is needed. Again, this kind of research can have a major impact on_______ 's success.

In fact, becoming_______ 's research manager is a great help to him or her.

Do help_______ practice interviewing. It would be an excellent idea for you to help_______ write out the script that I recommend for each activity, the telephone presentation, the telephone interview, and a face-to-face interview itself. Then you need to sit down with_______ and have him or her practice the scripts with you. These scripts need to be practiced over and over and over until_______ can perform them flawlessly.

Any job hunter thinks that he or she is going to interview flawlessly with very little practice. This idea couldn't be further from the truth. If you help _practice the interviewing techniques and the scripts that I provide, he or she is going to get a job that much faster. You need to reinforce that successful interviewing takes tons of practice and that, as a coach, that's part of your job.

I can't overemphasize the interviewing practice that_______ needs to do. You have to help him or her by role-playing over and over. Interviewing, for most people, doesn't come naturally. Most people blow their first three or four interviews before they really get into the "groove" of interviewing. _can't afford to blow any the interviews, because there are not going to be that many. So, you, as coach, need to help him/her practice until he/she can literally perform in interviewing situations in his/her sleep. Be sure to make_______ practice the questions in the subsequent chapters of this book. Help_______ formulate good answers.

Do, especially if you are employed, talk to all of your friends, at work and socially, to see if you can find any job opportunities that_______ may be qualified for. Don't hesitate to ask your friends, business associates, social acquaintances—frankly, anybody—if they might know of a job opportunity that _may be qualified for. _might be embarrassed about your doing this at first. But you need to remind_______ to "get over it." Which is more painful—needing a new job or worrying about how he or she is perceived by someone else? Being out of work or needing a new job has nowhere near the stigma that it did even a few years ago. Society is beginning to understand that the business climate, even for the world, is a lot more fluid than it has ever been. Remember, the average job lasts between two and a half and three years. Now, I'm not saying that we all need to be constantly looking for a job, but I am saying that the need to change jobs does not have the negative connotation that it used to_______ needs to realize that he/she need to get interviews in any manner possible.

Once you discover an opportunity for_______ in this manner, make sure that he or she follows up on it._______ has to make his or her own calls, appointments, etc. As I mentioned above, you should not do it for him/her.

Do provide as much spiritual and emotional comfort for_______ while he or she is looking for a job. Praying for_______ is definitely in order, if that is in your tradition or spiritual arsenal. Little surprises for_, like an ice-cream cone, a cheery note or card, fixing his/her favorite meal, etc. can be wonderful, positive reinforcements that will make him or her feel loved and accepted. After all of the rejection that is most likely happening, _needs all of the positive reinforcement he/she can get. Just being there for_______ will make all the difference in the world. Sometimes, the only thing that you will be able to do is to listen. Listening in a nonjudgmental way will give_______ an opportunity to hear him- or herself and help in "thinking things" out loud. Just knowing that you were there to help will keep_______ 's job search from being as lonely as it can be.

Do help_______ stay on task. As an objective coach, it may be easier for you to recognize when_______ loses focus on the things that are most important in a job search. Fear of rejection is one of the biggest hurdles that a person looking for a job has to overcome. Oftentimes people will confuse activity with productivity. They will do all kinds of things that are not really important in a job search but are easy to do and don't run the risk of rejection. The most important things that a person can do in a job search requires running the risk of being rejected. People will often avoid those kinds of activities and try to convince themselves that doing the nonrisky things are important. Playing golf with a group of buddies in the middle of the afternoon of any weekday or going to lunch with old girlfriends from previous employment can be rationalized as activities that could be beneficial in a job search. But compared to picking up the phone, calling a hiring authority, making a presentation of yourself, and trying to get in interview with that hiring authority—which are much more beneficial to finding a job—these activities are a lot less threatening, but easier to do. Part of your job as a coach is to help_______ do the "hard things" when it would be easier to do the less risky activities. So, help_______ make a plan. Even a little bit of objective coaching in this manner makes_______ more accountable, not just to him- or herself, but also to you.

Most of all, just be there for_. Let him or her know that you want to help as much as possible. You both can grow together.

Syndicated careers columnist Joyce Lain Kennedy agrees and summarizes the role of supporters.

Shared experiences can get you through the loneliness and uncertainty of unemployed days—the ups and downs, the insecurities and fears, and the brilliant moves and belly flops. You need family and friends who aren't rendered comatose by the microdetails of the job search process and especially those at the finish line, the interview.... When you are trying to pull off a great job search, there will be others willing to help you. Keep asking until you build the support team you need.

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