In the process of proposing this book to my publisher and subsequently writing it, a few factors came to light as I considered my personality and what I love about coaching.
I stopped compartmentalizing my marketing this year, which meant concerning myself less with a specific niche (or trying to hit multiple niches separately) and focusing more on a personal brand. After all, it’s a personal brand that sells coaching, not your niche. You could tell people you have a certain niche, and they’ll say, “So you’re a Fitness Coach, there’s dozens of them.” Don’t despair! If they like your brand enough, they’ll say things like “Yes, Lord, but even dogs feed on the crumbs that fall from their Masters’ table.” I’m not equating any of us to Jesus, here, I’m just saying when your personal brand reaches beyond your niche audience, you’ll always be busy, so long as you’re willing to work with people who fall outside your niche but who are eager for growth. Beware. It will mean putting yourself out there; perhaps even sharing ideas you have that some might find disagreeable.
I’m not a particularly linear thinker; I’m an artist and novelist. That’s part of what makes me a great coach in the exploration phase of the coaching funnel, but it sure makes life hard when you presume that a book about coaching has to include models and acronyms which will help people think in mnemonics and get that basic grasp on the skills required for coaching. Those things are great, and I wouldn’t be where I am, without instruction in the basic structure with mnemonics like the GROW model, RADAR, and the Coaching Funnel. The heart of coaching, on the other hand, is a difficult, if not impossible, thing to teach. There comes a point where you either get it or you don’t. But it’s something we can all continue to explore as we consider how we might dive deeper into that particular pool.
This paradigm shift from concern for my niche towards willingness to be myself infuses this book. I didn’t write another “how-to” book. Instead, I wrote a collection of essays on coaching I would want to read. That’s the key to good writing, by the way. Writing something you, yourself, would want to read. I wandered down life’s hedgerows through humor, creativity, and philosophy; a little leadership and cross-cultural stuff, I proposed some things you may disagree with, or not, and there you have it: A non-compartmentalized, non-linear, book of creative thoughts from a seven-year coaching veteran. If that doesn’t sound like your kind of read then it might be exactly the right book to push you to the next level!
About the Author: Adam G. Fleming considers himself a friend first. CEO of Evergreen Leaders, novelist, third-culture kid, husband and father, Adam blogs about everything at www.adamgfleming.com. His book, The Art of Motivational Listening, is available at www.adamgfleming.com/bookstore and on Amazon. He’s a graduate of Lifeforming Leadership Coaching (2009) and a coach trainer for Coaching Mission International and Christian Business Men’s Connection.