By Richard Barry - 07/13/10 01:10 AM EDT
If at this point a client thinks they have heard this approach before, they can rest assured this far-sighted technique really does work, and Aurelia Williams is living proof.
In person, Williams exudes the dynamism and charisma her vocationally uncertain clients seek. Such self-confidence, or lack thereof, Williams believes, is at the heart of most career crises. “People have a fear of failure. They don’t like their jobs, but they are afraid to loose that stability.”
Williams helps to counteract these concerns by aiding her clients in digging past these surface fears, unearthing the roots of their self-doubt and planting in their place pillars of poise and assurance from which they can build rewarding careers.
“A good life-coach puts up a mirror. Some people think, ‘What can a life coach tell me about my life that I don’t already know?’ But when you are too close to something, you can’t see it.”
As a life-coach, Williams knows she is doing a good job because she is always losing clients. “I try to steer my clients away from this transitional phase onto better things.” For her, a lost client means a found job and a newly discovered sense of worth for that person.
In order to successfully navigate her unemployed — or unhappily employed — clients beyond the road-blocking question of “What now?” Williams uses a customized technique that draws not only on her experiences in life coaching, but in life as well.
“Most coaches are cookie cutter, but I like to think of myself as a ‘real-life’ coach,” Williams says. She prides herself on the fact that her advice comes not from a sealed textbook, but rather from the well of experience she has garnered as a business entrepreneur and mother. Having undertaken such roles, she understands the strains and responsibilities of balancing career and family, and attributes the successes she has had helping others negotiate those demands to her own triumphs.
Strengthening the bond she holds with clients is Williams’s outlook on her own job. For her, life coaching is a form of service, “a way of giving back.” She keeps a small clientele to ensure her business is personal. “I want my clients to know that they have a relationship with me and aren’t just a two o’clock appointment.”
Although Williams specializes in counseling mothers and women in the workforce, she has had a diverse client list of all ages and occupations. The oldest client she has had was a 65-year-old schoolteacher who proved it is never too late to discern your proper vocation.
Despite her successes, Williams said she is no magician. “I only want to bring out in a person what already was there. Teach them never to compromise their values. And if you don’t believe in something, don’t surround yourself with it.”