Our Take on Advice from Google’s CEO, Who Says, ‘Everybody Needs a Coach’

In 2009, Google’s then-CEO Eric Schmidt shared what he considered to be the best advice he’d ever received. Even as the head of one of most powerful companies, he was encouraged to hire a coach.

Schmidt’s advice is some that many of us can learn from and that holds true today. What do Arden’s coaches have to add to Schmidt’s outspoken recommendation in support of coaching? Keep reading to find out.

‘I’m an Established CEO, Why Do I Need a Coach?’

As he expresses what he thought of coaching prior to being coached himself, Schmidt’s advice takes us to a common misconception about executive coaching, a notion that many who are unfamiliar with how coaching works tend to feel.

After engaging in coaching sessions, Schmidt quickly realized that coaching is far from a partnership that should be looked down on or viewed solely as a means to resolve problems when they’re out of control. He said that, in fact, the most successful performers, from athletes to those on the highest corporate ladder rung, rely on a coach.

A coach’s objective lens and ability to be their client’s trusted soundboard, thought technician, and confidant yields the kind of perspective that allows self-awareness to grow, laying the foundation for welcoming change into one’s routine to stretch personal and professional potential.

Learn about the importance of being open to the coaching process here.

Everyone Needs a Coach, But…

At Arden, we couldn’t agree more with Schmidt: Everyone can benefit from being a coaching client and receiving an advanced level of perspective and guidance. But we’d like to add a clarifying statement to Schmidt’s advice: Everyone needs a coach but only if they’re coachable and in the right mind frame.

If you’re someone who wants a coach and is ready to put in the time to work on personal improvement, you should absolutely get a coach. But if you think someone else needs a coach, you’re going to need to check that they’re interested in the process and that now is a good time for them to participate in coaching.

Coaching takes work and timing is key. If you’re under a lot of stress at work—say you’re in the midst of dealing with a merger or acquisition—now is probably not the right time to challenge yourself to think in new ways.

Coaching is a Two-Way Partnership

We definitely think that Eric Schmidt’s advice is something we can all benefit from. Everybody needs a coach, but it’s up to you to determine when the right time is.

Not sure if you’re in the right mindset for coaching? Check out these tell-tale signs that now is the right time to pursue an executive coaching engagement.

Want an even deeper look into how an executive coaching partnership works? Download Arden’s free introductory coaching eBook that will walk you through our uniquely powerful six-week coaching program.