The literal meaning of coaching is “to train”, “to teach” and the coach can be best identified as a “trainer” or “instructor”. Since this translation is far from covering all the nuances of what a coach can do for her clients, we have borrowed the English word, instead of using a Bulgarian interpretation. So, what IS a coach? And coaching? How is a coach different from a sports trainer or a motivational speaker? All great questions, because they give me a chance to explain all the layers and opportunities that underline the word “coach”.

The origins of the word, as you might have guessed, come from sports.  In sports, the goal of the coach is to build on the talents and to make the best use of the potential of the athletes who are under his or her training. The coach might have knowledge in the specific sport or might not have, the one attribute that is a must for a successful coach is to be able to set goals and to motivate his or her athletes to achieve them.

Besides the sports methods, career coaching also relies on psychological techniques. According the classic behavioral psychology, a person can be seen as an empty vessel, in which everything can, and should, be poured – education, manners, knowledge, values, discipline, and so on. According to the psychological theories on which coaching is based, each individual is viewed as an acorn – we all have the potential to develop into powerful and impressive oaks. Of course, we need support, encouragement, and inspiration, and all the skills and greatness we are capable of, are already within us.