Olivia Stefanino says it's hard to beat that light bulb moment when a client 'gets' it. She talks to TrainingZone.co.uk about her journey into coaching and beyond.
Job title: Author, trainer, coach
Brief description of the job that you do:
My credo is that 'successful companies employ successful individuals' and in my work as a leadership trainer and coach, I work with the people that make the companies successful.
1. Why did you move into your line of work?
Since I was a child, I had a real curiosity about people and what makes them tick, which led to me choosing to train as a journalist - eventually I owned and edited two business magazines.
While journalism taught me how to ask great questions – and dig beneath the surface – it also enabled me to study people in business. I got to see what worked – and what didn’t.
After swapping some advertising space for some team development training I just knew that at last I’d discovered my soul purpose – this guy was doing exactly what I wanted to do for a living! From there, it was a matter of putting myself through a personal accelerated learning programme which included everything from NLP and hypnosis through to Emotional & Spiritual Intelligence.
2. What do you love best about your job?
I just love it when you’re working with people who suddenly 'get' it. It’s something of a cliché, I know, but there’s very little to beat that light bulb moment!
3. What do you find most challenging?
I do find it frustrating when people refuse to realise that they have power over their own lives. While it’s tempting to blame others when things don’t go the way we want, it’s only when we take responsibility for ourselves that we get our personal power back.
4. What's the best advice that you would give to someone new to coaching?
Make sure you specialise. There are loads of excellent trainers out there – so what distinguishes you from them? Fail to answer this question and you’ll face an uphill struggle to find enough work to make ends meet.
5. What's the best advice that's been given to you that has helped you in your career?
Be discerning when it comes to other people’s negative comments. If they’re justified, learn from what they’re telling you and then MOVE ON. Don’t take other people’s sour grapes or childhood resentments personally.
6. How do you see coaching developing over the next few years?
Paradoxically, I see coaching both improving and worsening as time goes on. There’ll always be room for dedicated coaches who focus on helping their clients achieve their long term objectives. Sadly, more and more people who’ve simply attended a weekend course are calling themselves coaches and I suspect their interest is more about making a fast buck. It’s a shame, as it degrades what coaching is really about.
7. What's the best career help book that you've ever read?
That’s an impossible question. I have a garage stuffed full of excellent books and in my car I’m usually listening to audio material that’s connected with the work I do. I’m hugely lucky to be in a field that I’m both interested in and passionate about.
8. What's the best event within the training community that you've ever attended?
For me, what’s new on TrainingZone.co.uk is a regular event packed full of fresh perspectives, new ideas and dynamic debate.
9. Who do you think is the most inspirational member of the training community and have you ever met them?
While it might seem too obvious, I think Tony Robbins is an inspiration because he’s done so much to help so many people across the world understand the amazing power of the mind. Sadly though, I haven’t yet met him personally.
10. What else do you want to share with our readers?
Discover the 128 ways to harness your personal power for free - by visiting www.beyourownguru.com
Read last week's spotlight on Mike Morrison:
Spotlight on Mike Morrison