What is Success Coaching?
How is Success Coaching similar to or different from therapy?
How is Success Coaching different from consulting?
Distinctions between Success Coaching, Therapy, and Consulting.
Why hire a Success Coach?
What happens when one hires a Success Coach?
Does the Success Coach work on personal goals or business/professional goals?
Where does a Success Coach focus with an average client?
Why does Success Coaching work?
Why is Success Coaching becoming so popular?
What about people who are already doing great in their lives. Why would they need a Success Coach?
Can a dependency be created between Success Coach and client?
Can Success Coaching hurt someone?
Can I hire a Success Coach just for a short-term, special project?
What qualifies a Success Coach?

What is Success Coaching?

Success Coaching is a powerful relationship in which client and Success Coach work to improve the quality of the client’s life. Through dialogue, inquiry, goal setting, accountability and general motivational techniques, the Success Coach supports the client to assume full responsibility for creating a fulfilling life.

Success Coaches:

  • Help people set better goals and then reach those goals.
  • Ask their clients to do more than they would have done on their own.
  • Focus their clients better to more quickly produce results.
  • Provide the tools, support and structure to accomplish more.


How is Success Coaching similar to or different from Therapy?

Similarities between Success Coaching and Therapy:

  • Both professions are based on an ongoing, confidential, one-to-one relationship between the practitioner and their client.
  • Clients come to both services wanting change
  • Both professions assume that significant change will only occur over time.
  • Within the both relationships, regular sessions are scheduled, during which conversations occur.
  • Other similarities of practice exist.

Differences between Success Coaching and Therapy:
The context of the relationship, condition of the client, and content of the sessions differ between the two professions as follows.

Success Coaches work with people who are:

  • Eager to move to a higher level of functioning
  • Seeking focus, strategy, and motivation
  • Asking “How?” to questions
  • Designing their future
  • Learning new skills
  • Seeking more balance in their lives

Therapists work with people who are:

  • Seeking self-understanding
  • Asking “Why?” questions
  • Dealing with past issues, emotional pain or traumas
  • Psychologically challenged in a quantifiable way

How is Success Coaching Different from Consulting?

Consulting and Success Coaching differ greatly. Consulting requires that the consultant have expertise in the area that the client seeks advice, whereas Success Coaches do not advise their clients at all, but rather hold the client as Creative, Resourceful and Whole. In a consulting relationship the consultant holds the power in the relationship; in Success Coaching the PARTNERSHIP holds the power.

Distinctions among Success Coaching, Therapy, and Consulting.

Comparison Success Coaching Therapy Consulting
Client status Client is creative, resourceful, and whole; wants forward movement and results Client needs/wants healing Client needs advice, solutions, or help
Who is the expert? Client is the expert Therapist is the expert Consultant is the expert
Questions? Asks what questions Asks why questions Answers questions
Time focus Focus on present/future Focus on past/present Focus on present/future
Agenda Client’s Therapist’s Consultant’s
Problem solving Client solves problem Problem is analyzed/may or may not be solved, “Why is this happening?” is primary focus Consultant solves the problem

Why hire a Success Coach?

People hire a Success Coach because:

  • They want more.
  • They want to grow.
  • They want things to be easier.

It’s as simple as that. Success Coaches help a client get all three. Quickly.

What happens when one hires a Success Coach?

Many things, but the most important are:

  • One takes oneself more seriously.
  • One takes more effective and focused actions immediately.
  • One stops putting up with what is dragging one down.
  • One creates momentum so it’s easier to get results.
  • One sets better goals that one might not have without the Success Coach.
  • One discovers which perspectives move one forward and which do not.

Does the Success Coach work on personal goals or business/professional goals?

Both, actually. And, with the line between personal and business life blurring nowadays, the Success Coach is the only professional trained to work with all aspects of the individual.

Where does the Success Coach focus with an average client?

Success Coaches focus where the client needs Success Coaching most. Success Coaches focus on:

  • Getting the client’s Personal Foundation strengthened.
  • Helping the client beef up their reserves.
  • Helping the client set goals based on their Personal Values.
  • Helping the client choose effective perspectives that motivate positive action.

By including these with what the client wants from Success Coaching, Success Coaches help the client have fewer problems and focus on what’s going to make them the most successful. We’ve found that clients really enjoy this approach.

Why does Success Coaching work?

Success Coaching works for several reasons:

  • Synergy between the Success Coach and client creates momentum.
  • Better goals are set — ones that naturally pull the client toward the goal rather than goals that require the client to push themselves to the goal.
  • The client develops new skills, and these skills translate into more success.

Why is Success Coaching becoming so popular?

Success Coaching is becoming popular for several reasons:

  1. Many people are tired of doing what they “should” do and are ready to do something special and meaningful for the rest of their lives. The problem is, many people cannot clearly see what they’d rather have, or if they can, they can’t see a way to reorient their life around it. A Success Coach can help them do both.
  2. People are realizing how simple it can be to accomplish something that several years ago might have felt out of reach or like a pipe dream. A Success Coach is not a miracle worker but a Success Coach does have a large tool kit to help their Big Idea become a Reality. Fortunately, people now have time and resources to invest in themselves in this kind of growth.
  3. Spirituality. If you’ve tracked the phenomenal success of James Redfield’s Celestine Prophecy on the NY Times best-seller list during 1994, you get a sense of just how many people are willing to look at, and consider, the notion of spirituality. Wow. Many Success Coaches are spiritually based — even the ones who Success Coach IBM and AT&T. America is getting more spiritual – connected with self and others – quickly.

What about people who are already doing great in their lives. Why would they need a Success Coach?

They might not need a Success Coach. But it is helpful to find out: Are they doing what they most enjoy? Are they tolerating anything? Is life easy? Are they going to be financially independent within the next 15 years? Do they have what they most want? Often, people need to expect more out of their lives. A Success Coach can help in this process.

Can a dependency be created between Success Coach and client?

Not really. The client may “need” the Success Coach in order to maximize an opportunity or accelerate their growth, yet not be “dependent” on the Success Coach. Anyone who’s up to something “needs” structure, advice, support and a place to brag, so in that sense, the Success Coach is necessary. But an emotional, psychological dependency is not created. The Success Coach works with people who are just fine and strong enough on their own. Remember, we’re not resolving issues here. The Success Coach is helping the client to create a better future: More success, more money, and a higher quality of life.

Can Success Coaching hurt someone?

No. Success Coaches don’t engage in psychological work. Success Coaches do not try to control the client’s thinking, but instead support the client in taking responsibility for their own thinking and/or behavior. Therefore, change is initiated and followed through on by the client.

Can I hire a Success Coach just for a short-term, special project?

Yes. Some clients hire a Success Coach to help them accomplish specific goals or projects. Usually, however, the client keeps working with the Success Coach after that because there are even more interesting things to accomplish.

What qualifies a Success Coach?

A Success Coach is a trained professional who is certified by a Success Coaching institution that is approved by the International Coach Federation (ICF) which governs the standards, practices, ethics and guidelines of the Success Coaching profession. All Wake-Up Call Success Coaches are certified through The Coaches Training Institute, an ICF accredited institution.

*Excerpted, in part, from The International Coaching Federation and The Coaches Training Institute FAQ. Edited with collaboration from Melissa McFarlane.