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Coaching on Confidence: Five ways to grow your clients Confidence

Coaching on confidence: Five ways to grow your clients Confidence



Many clients come to coaching wanting to improve their confidence.  None of us are confident in all areas of their life and work, but confidence can be developed. What our clients need is a seed of self-confidence that through experience, action and knowledge can flourish.


Here are 5 ways that you can try to help your clients develop their confidence:

  1. Stop & Reflect– Coaching creates a safe and uninterrupted space to stop and reflect, a safe container. Life is so busy that those we coach are often so keen to move forward onto the next thing, that they can miss out on reviewing their past successes and gaining the confidence boost that provides.

Coach: Ask them to think of why they were employed for their last role. What qualities, attributes and skills their employer saw in them that they thought would be a valuable addition to the organisation? Remind them that perception is reality, if others recognised qualities in them, it must be true.

  1. Take an Experimental Attitude– The action planning aspect of coaching, where clients agree what they will do between sessions is fertile ground for experimentation. The only way your client will know if they can do something is to try. Guide them to craft experiments outside of their usual area of expertise that they can learn from. The key is that they are not wedded to a successful outcome, instead they are committed to learning from it.

Coach: Encourage your client to volunteer to do something that they outside of their comfort zone. For example, if they’ve been given feedback that they are not developing good relationships with their team, they could volunteer at a charity where developing relationships is an essential part of the role. There are many community groups, faith groups and charities that would welcome support. Win-win.

  1. Develop Realistic Self-Awareness– Lack of confidence can be a result of a perfectionist streak, helping clients to understand what drives their behaviour can be helpful.

My recent survey showed that experiences of bullying had the most negative impact on confidence, often clients don’t realise until after the event that bullying has taken place. As coaches we can help those in the grip of a confidence damaging situation recognize it and consider strategies to take the action.

It’s human nature to be self-critical and to compare how we feel inside with how others look on the outside. Sometimes the context amplifies this, when we are a visible minority imposter syndrome, can rear its head, and a result we can have an unrealistic sense of our flaws and try to overcompensate for them.

Coach: Encourage your clients to obtain feedback. They can ask colleagues, friends, family and clients how they are doing. They need to be specific about the areas that they want feedback on and try to gain an insight into their blind spots, the things that others have noticed about them that they might not have seen in them self. Help them to take on board the strengths that others notice in them and use those to overcome your weaknesses.

  1. Look Confident until they become it– They say we eat with our eyes and I think we look for signs of confidence with our eyes also. How your client looks, their voice and use of language all matter. This is not more important than their competence of course, but it helps.

Coach: Encourage your clients to practice in front of mirror, standing tall, speaking slowly, clearly, and not fidgeting. Wear clothes that make them feel confident. Observe those who exude confidence and see what they can learn from their body language.

  1. Continually develop themselves– Knowledge is power and the more informed you are, the better decision you can make. We all feel unconfident when we don’t have all the facts or the know-how.

Help your clients brainstorm courses, industry publications, networking events, mentors or sponsors to help them improve their knowledge. Or journal reflecting on their most confident moments each day.

Remind them that Confidence comes after the act, not before, so they must build their courage and take action!

This chat seeks to explore insights for coaches who are working to develop their clients confidence. We aim to achieve this through  the following questions:

  1. What’s impacts confidence?
  2. What matters when developing confidence? What does ‘purpose’ mean in this context?
  3. What approach do you take to developing confidence in your clients?
  4. Can coaching on confidence go too far and make individuals come across as arrogant? What can help as an internal compass?


RESEARCH: Confidence: the Destination or a Journey?

BLOG: Read more from Jenny about developing your confidence.

ONLINE TRAINING: Learn how to Overcome Imposter Syndrome and much more with the Happenista Project

Audio Course: 7 days of inspirational audio delivered directly to your inbox on confidence, resilience, gratitude and much more [3 Mins per audio]

BOOK: The Magic of Thinking Big by David J Schwartz

BOOK: Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway by Susan Jeffers

VIDEO: How to Become a Confident Public Speaker [55 mins]

BLOG: Developing Unshakeable Self – Confidence [3 mins]

This blog was written by Jenny Garrett, an Award-Winning Coach, Speaker and Trainer with over 12 years’ experience of running a Global Business.  She is a Freeman of the Guild of Entrepreneurs – City of London and was listed in Brummell Magazines Top 30 City Innovators 2016.

Jenny works with individuals and organisations, using her unique combination of skills around gender balance, leadership and self-improvement to inspire and empower, achieving career and life changing results beyond expectation.