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What is a Coaching Contract?

A Coaching Contract is an agreement that sets the expectations, tone, and rules of the entire coaching session/program.

The purpose of coaching is to support both the coach and coachee (the person being coached) to achieve their goals. A coaching contract is a written agreement that focuses on the topics, results, outcomes, or goals of the whole coaching process.

Why Do I Need a Coaching Contract?

A Coaching Contract helps not only the coachee but also the coach come to a common perception of the expectations in their entire coaching journey. If you are a coach, having a coaching contract can help you avoid any disagreeable situations that might arise with your client.

A coaching contract can also help a coach show their clients that they are on top of things right from the beginning. Not only that it will draw professional lines within a client-coach relationship, but it can also help build confidence in the entire coaching program.

A coaching agreement is also a great way to convey to a coachee that they are on top of things right from the start. It produces the professional line within which the relationship should succeed, and helps put up confidence in the program.

If you are on the other hand, a coachee, outlining a great coaching contract can help you make the most of your coaching program. It allows the coachee to have an overview of the coaching methodology and know what to expect and what not to expect from the entire coaching experience, this includes things like:

  • the price of being coached,
  • when and where sessions will be held, and
  • what happens if the coachee can’t turn up to a session.

What are the Key Clauses in a Coaching Contract?

Every coach-coachee relationship is different. However, no matter what kind of coaching you are setting up, these key points should not be missing in your contract:

Introduction – This part basically tells what the contract is all about. A good introduction sets the stage for the rest of the contact. The introduction should let the reader know two things :

A. Why are we here?
B. What is the purpose of this agreement?
C. What are the coachee’s expectations or desired outcomes?

Disclaimer – A Disclaimer simply tells what not to expect from the coaching program. This is the part where the coach can mention that they are a coach and not a fairy godmother, or that their coaching isn’t a substitute for focused hard work (and even therapy!). A Disclaimer protects the coach against any unreasonable interpretations of their services or what a coach can do.

Coaching Process – These clauses will deal with things like where and how the coaching will take place, the expected time frame of the coaching and how long each session will take.

Payment – In the Payment section, it is important to set expectations on when and how to pay. Creating a clear payment section is important in order to avoid any possible confusion. Some of the important details not to miss in the payment section include:

A. How much the payment is
B. What the payment covers
C. How the payment is structured
D. When the payment is due

Refund Policy – A Refund Policy sets a clear term around if, when, and how refunds are accepted. Setting clear terms of a refund policy can also help the coach from clients who fail to keep their appointments or reschedules their coaching sessions a little too late.

Client Responsibility – In the Client Responsibility section, this section basically tells the coachee to be accountable and do their part in order to make the coaching program a success on both parts. It tells the coachee that in order for them to get the full benefit of their program, they need to be responsible for doing their part to make the coaching process work at its full potential.

Confidentiality – This section simply tells that what happens in coaching should stay in coaching. It tells that both parties should not share or use the other’s information without permission.

Confidentiality protects both the coach and the coachee from information getting shared that they don’t want to be shared. Some of the sensitive information that you should be taken care of include:

A. Payment information
B. Details about both parties’ shared during coaching sessions – for instance a coachee would not want their competitors to know the weakness in their skills now would they?!

Termination – Just like a prenup, the termination section gives the parties a legal “way out” in the event that both parties need to part ways. It tells the client that they want to get the most of their coaching program, yet they also have the right to fire their coach as a client.

Or looking at it another way, it gives the coach legal reasoning when, for instance, there’s nothing they can do to help the coachee.

Overall, a coaching contract should be discussed, agreed, and recorded in writing with a copy for both parties. Both parties should make a point to review the contract together regularly to make sure they are both still on track.

A coaching contract is very important. Paying due attention to it can mean a huge difference between a successful coaching relationship.

If you need help with a coaching contract or if you are looking for a contract lawyer, call us at 1800 355 455 or fill in the form below.

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