Even though you may be interested in career counseling, executive coaching, or graduate admissions counseling, you might have questions about what to expect from your work with us. We’ve compiled some frequently asked questions to help you decide if we’re the right fit for you. We hope our answers will help you get the most out of the work we do together.
In the very first session, we will thoroughly discuss your educational, career and leadership history. We will also look at your family’s educational and career history to see if we can uncover any patterns or expectations that may be shaping your current professional life.
Then, together, we will set actionable goals for our work together. We will clarify what you hope to achieve, identify the steps you need to take, and create a reasonable timeline for meeting your goals. At every point, we will focus on making reasonable, goal-oriented decisions that support your career pursuits.
You will also be given work to complete outside of sessions. This homework will be integral to your progress and success. (See more on homework below.)
We work with clients from a wide variety of career fields. Most often, we work with lawyers, educators, medical doctors, professionals in media, publishing, ad tech & sales, entrepreneurs, psychologists, and other mental health professionals. However, we welcome clients from many different career paths.
We generally work with mid-career professionals and executives, but we are happy to serve a wide range of clients seeking our services.
We are directive, action-oriented, and outcome-focused. While we approach the process of finding and enhancing careers with care and skill, our ultimate focus is on helping you make a real change. We understand that you may have limited time to dedicate to your career search, and we want to support you efficiently and effectively.
That said, we are also collaborative. In sessions, you and your coach are a united team, working together toward a common goal. We want to help you get where you need to go.
We also serve as accountability partners who can motivate you to get tasks done by the deadlines we set together. When you know you are responsible for meeting our agreed-upon expectations, it’s easier to stay on track.
Yes, we are licensed counseling psychologists. One of the factors that distinguishes counseling psychologists from clinical psychologists is that counseling psychologists receive extensive training during the acquisition of our Ph.D.s in career theory, career counseling and testing. As psychologists, we have a more expansive lens as it pertains to motivating behavior change in career related contexts and have significant experience in clinical interventions that aim to reduce issues that often appear in difficult professional transitions including anxiety, performance issues, psychological blocks, procrastination and self-esteem.
During our post-doctoral training, we were supervised by an executive coach with more than 30 years of experience in the field coaching managers and executives in the U.S. and internationally which furthered our career expertise. We both worked for almost a decade at career counseling centers in a range of settings including graduate and business schools. Richard was the founding director of NYU’s Graduate Student Career Development Center. Career, executive, and graduate school counseling are not just our specialties—they are our dedicated focus and have been for more than 15 years.
In our experience, the clients who find the most success are those who are very motivated to do the work and change their professional lives. They do the homework outside of sessions and come to sessions on time, prepared, and eager to ask questions and find answers.
If you are committed to the coaching process and motivated to be productive in and outside of sessions, we are confident that you can achieve your goals.
The homework varies quite a bit from situation to situation. For example, you might compile a list of networking contacts, create a plan for informational interviewing, construct a professional branding narrative or develop an executive summary for your resume with our guidance.
No matter what the particular tasks look like, we will always provide structure and support and the homework will always be geared toward helping you develop and hone the career skills you need to move forward.
We offer testing for those who are exploring new career options or developing leadership skills.
After your first sessions, you will be given instructions to take a battery of online career tests related to your particular goals. This battery will be tailored to you, as an individual, and your unique professional life. Depending on your needs, the tests will look at a variety of areas. For career exploration, the battery will often include assessments of your motivators, skills, interests, personality, values and career preferences. For leadership development, we will examine personality, communication styles, conflict management, managing up, down & laterally and team orientation.
After you are done with the testing, we will go over the results in session. Together, we can interpret what your results mean and gain greater insight into your next steps. We also provide a comprehensive report that compiles the results of the testing and our findings in the review that will allow you to revisit the results at any point in the future, which can be helpful as a reminder of the work that you have done with us.
Learn more about career testing here.
After you complete career testing or we work together for a few sessions, you might realize that you want to go back to school to support your career change. Or you may have decided that you want to go back to graduate school, but require support in the process. We can offer guidance at every step of the application process, from finding the right programs to completing your personal statements. Learn more here.
Once you feel you’ve received all the support you need and/or have reached your identified goal(s), you’ll know it has worked. (We just ask that you tell us so we don’t think you’ve disappeared!) The goals of career counseling or executive coaching are usually very concrete (e.g., figure out how to make a career pivot, land a new job) and it is fairly easy to understand if coaching is working.
You will likely know when you are ready to stop coming to career counseling. It may be once you have a clear sense of the possibilities in front of you, or—as is more common, it may be once you’ve made that change you’ve been hoping for. Once you are ready to end our work together, we typically have a final session where we review your goals and discuss next steps for you.
Whatever your career goals look like, we strive to help you meet them.
On average, clients generally work with us for about 8 months. However, there is a range. Some clients receive long-term, ongoing career and executive coaching to manage situations that arise with a supportive structure around them. Other clients benefit from 4-6 sessions of testing and then go off to make the transition on their own. Each client has their own preference for how much or how little support they need and we respect that individual preference. We make recommendations for how much support we think your situation will require, but in the end, it is always your choice.
Finding a new career takes time and effort, and there’s no easy, one-step solution. It can be difficult to find the time to stop, understand the dynamics shaping your professional life, and envision the career you really want. It also takes time to understand how to position and pitch yourself differently, especially if you’ve been in one career for a very long time.
With executive coaching, you are learning new ways of managing behavior in your professional life and that takes time as you assess the situation and begin to try new ways of addressing the issues that you have been facing.
That said, we are here to help you make lasting changes quickly. We want to help you move forward as quickly as you can, without cutting corners or compromising on your goals.