Scary Coach Syndrome
I’ve seen it again and again. When I host a table at a fair or an expo, it’s especially prevalent ~Scary Coach Syndrome. From a coach’s perspective, I find it somewhat amusing to prepare to greet both potential clients and those who are mostly curious and, in this, to watch fair or expo attendees’ reactions as they realize that I am a Life Coach.
They take a wide circle around the front of the display. They avoid eye contact reacting as though the floor suddenly became the most fascinating thing in existence. They loudly proclaim as they scurry by that THEY don’t need a life coach, just in case someone thought they may have shown interest. More so, when they see the signage indicating that I am also a personal finance coach, some grow pale; some cautiously step forward with wide eyed curiosity. Occasionally, some will ask questions but mostly, they rush by as fast as they can!
I smile. Sometimes internally, I laugh. I want them to know that coaches are not that scary. In this, I thought I would address and debunk some concerns that I’ve heard over time:
- Coaches are not going to jump on you and ‘fix’ you on site. We understand and respect your space. While you may share that you feel stuck, we don’t consider you broken.
- Coaches are not looking to share their health beliefs with you against your will. We value who you are as well as your views.
- Coaches are not going to force you to buy their services. We get that you may not be ready or may want to explore the options first. We also simply don’t support forcing our outlook on others.
Most coaches are genuinely caring and will ask questions to identify if the potential client is seeking a coach or merely curious. If the attendee shares of an area of interest or asks specific questions, we will answer them respectfully and clearly as seems to best meet each individual need. Coaches know that individual needs vary. Respectful coaches will allow you the time and space to choose if you are ready to meet with them. They will offer their cards, brochures, or next steps information, without forcing you to set a date ‘on the spot’ to meet with them, unless you are asking to do so. You are free to refuse this information. Coaches are considerate in this.
So the next time you see a coach at an expo or fair, please approach them, ask questions, feel free to engage in conversation, and to take their contact information, without feeling threatened. Share their contact information with friends or family who may have need, without pressure or implication, respectfully, as was done for you. Let’s take steps to clear the symptoms of Scary Coach Syndrome from local expos or fairs. Let’s support coaches as they offer their caring assistance publicly.