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What is a career coach (or job mentor)? 

Career coaches support clients through communication and help them reach their goals in a short period of time, while mentors work on the mindset of mentees and offer long-term support. 

What they have in common is that they both encourage clients or mentees to raise awareness and trigger behavioral change through 1-on-1 communication, and support them in delivering better results. Unlike teaching where answers are given, they support clients by encouraging them to find points of improvement on their own.  

The difference is that coaches set short-term career goals while mentors aim to develop the mentee’s individual capacity in the long run to enrich their lives. 


Some benefits of hiring career coaches 

For those who have a growth mindset and wanting to change themselves for the better, hiring a suitable coach is nothing but beneficial. 

Over the last three years, I have submitted weekly review reports and have held monthly face-to-face meetings with my coaches. In between, I have taken several short-term coaching sessions such as for three months, taking full advantage of the coaching system. 

My biggest finding is that, people have limitless possibilities and growth potential. My coach told me many times that I can still grow, and grow limitlessly, always encouraging me to stop doubting and take on new challenges. I also tell myself this message repeatedly to believe in the possibilities others from the bottom of my heart. 


Three major benefits that I gained by hiring career coaches:  

● Your coach is your biggest supporter 

A coach is always on the client's side and believes in their possibilities. In a time of rapid change it is powerful to have a great supporter who always provides support in difficult situations when you are discouraged about your career. You will feel a sense of emotional security by knowing that you will have someone by your side, no matter what happens. 

● They enable you to take your next actions quickly 

When one is faced with difficulties, people unconsciously begin to feel their emotions and are taken over by them. It takes time for logical thinking to kick-in and control your emotions. While feelings are an important factor to consider as it relates directly with your motivation, it is crucial to separate your emotions when it comes to business in order to analyze the situation without bias. External coaches will listen calmly to your stories and support you in coming up with the next idea or to decide on next actions.  Having a positive mindset and being able to think calmly will lead you to taking next steps. A big advantage of having a coach is to be able to run this cycle faster. 

● A tool to reflect on yourself 

I have been taking external coach sessions for the last three years.  In the weekly reports, I look back on the past week and think about how I am going to spend the next week. One of the things which motivates me is the advice I receive from my coach every week after I submit my weekly report.  

How fruitful your week is will vary from time to time, however, you will be able to see your growth and changes in thinking as you reflect on things such as what troubled you last week, what your challenges were a year ago, what you were thinking about three years back, which will all lead to making your goals and issues clear. One other advantage of reflecting on a regular basis, was being able to give advice to my team members and colleagues who have the same problems that I had in the past.  


What type of coach do you work best with? 

It is hard to say what type of coach would be the best for you. In my case, one of my coaches is a person who has a management perspective and has experience that I do not have, and the other coach is a lady who has a similar background of having a playing manager experience as I have.  

You will need to determine whether you have good chemistry with your coach, so the first thing you want to do is to hold a session to talk about what you want to do and how you want to grow. You must keep in mind that coaches also choose their clients. 

In order to receive the utmost support from your coach, the most important thing to be aware of is your effort and how you face the challenges. If you don't prepare for your session, you will not be making the most of your time. You must always complete assignments and requests from your coach. I once did not do my homework and my coach warned me about it. Coaches are also very serious about supporting you.  

If a client has a clear goal (If you don't know your goal, the purpose of the session could be set to finding your goal), the coach will also put an incredible amount of effort to support you to reach your goal. In such case, the session will become more effective and as a result, what often happens is you are able to achieve further than your original goal.    

Having a coach or a coaching method is not a one-size-fits-all solution. I believe that your efforts and your strong desire to achieve results will help you to supplement and lead you to further grow in the end. 


■Read a previous article >> 9th Month “The Value of Networking outside your Company and Tips on How to Start” 


Aki Nagashima 

B2B Associate Director 


Enters a large English Lesson School in 2003 as Sales. Moved to Recruit in 2007, and did sales in the advertisement media division. Started as Candidate Advisor in the Industrial sector at en world in 2013. Has experienced Consultant, Team Manager, and became Associate Director as of 2019.