Barbara Seifert, Ph. DBarbara Seifert, Ph. D., CPC

You may have heard that there are people "out there" who can help you find and land a job, but you may be wondering exactly who 'those people' are and what exactly do they do. Well, this article will explain what a career coach is, what they do, and how you could benefit from working with one.

In the broader context, a coach can best be defined as "a person who guides and supports other people on their life and work journeys to create more of what they are wanting; coaches act as partners with clients to discover what they want and how best to achieve it" (Levine, Kase & Vitale, 2006). According to Coach U, Inc., coaching works due to synergy – becoming a team with the client and helping them get more than they would alone; structure – helping the client take more action, think bigger, and get the job done; and expertise – helping the client make more money, make better decisions, set the best goals, and restructure their personal and professional lives for maximum productivity. Most people find that, even though they are reading self-help books or tapes, they wind up going back to their old ways so they need someone to give them the "push" they need, as well as the accountability – and that is what the coach is there for. While they help the client to set goals, develop the action steps, and then help them clear out the 'blockages' that may deter them from reaching the goal, it is the accountability system that helps clients to achieve these goals.

There are many areas and populations that coaches work with, but one of the major niches is career coaching, which is aimed at helping people to find a job, change jobs, phase into a new career, or to start their own business. A career coach can work with clients who fall into several developmental phases, including: high school students, who are unclear about college or a major; college students who are not sure about their chosen field of study or still question what they want to do; people who are in-between jobs or are unhappy with their job and want to find a new one, and older workers who are looking to reinvent themselves or retire from the workforce. A career coach can help you to discover your purpose and passion, define and set your career goals, and develop a strategy for getting there; they also assist with interviewing skills, resume review and writing (not all), salary negotiation, and business etiquette skills. In addition, they can help you develop professionally to enhance your skills and move up in your career.

Hopefully, you have a better understanding of the role and benefits of working with a career coach and will consider finding one to aid you. Coaching can help you be the best you can be and find the success you've been looking for!

Dr. Barbara Seifert, LCSW, CPC, NLP is the President of Committed to Your Success Coaching & Consulting in Orlando, Florida. She helps individuals to take charge of their careers, find the work they love and enhance their professional development to reach their peak performance. She also coaches in organizations to enhance employee engagement and leadership development. Dr. Seifert is an adjunct professor, a certified coach and certified in Neuro-Linguistic Programming. You can learn more by visiting and Your Career Success Blog at