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Coach In The Spotlight - Simon Ong


Posted: 2703 days ago

As the end of another year approaches, so begins my reflection on all of the amazing things that have happened in 2013. Who would have thought that a decision taken on July 6th 2012 to enroll would be a game-changer of a step towards where I am today!

As the end of another year approaches, so begins my reflection on all of the amazing things that have happened in 2013.

New adventures experienced. Inspirational individuals I am fortunate to call friends, who have had an incredible impact on my life. And the many important lessons learnt, which have allowed me to grow as an individual.

One of these adventures as you may already have guessed, has been my journey with The Coaching Academy. Who would have thought that a decision taken on July 6th 2012 to enroll would be a game-changer of a step towards where I am today!

This interest in coaching did not just come to me one morning while enjoying a nice warm shower, or even as I contemplated where I was in life, moments before drifting off to sleep one night. It was one of those beautiful things that happened by accident as a result of events, which at the time, I considered the bleakest since my mother passed away when I was just 19 years old.

In the summer of 2005, while visiting relatives in Singapore, I logged onto my email account to learn that I had just failed my second year of university at the LSE and had to resit that entire year.

You don’t need to be a student of Chinese culture to know that this news was like me telling you that there will be no fireworks in any city to celebrate the beginning of 2014! The scenario that played out would simply not have crossed my mind, let alone my family’s.

What happened in the following five months however, showed me just what is possible when we truly dedicate ourselves to a vision, no matter what obstacles may stand in the way.

Before my Christmas shopping had even begun that year, I had the luxury of choosing between multiple offers from City institutions for a 10-week internship in the summer of 2006. I eventually chose to work with Lehman Brothers, which I successfully converted into a full-time offer.

That experience of having landed all these offers despite where I had come from, led me to a chance meeting with an inspirational individual who had quit the corporate world and set up his own careers coaching company. Before I knew it, I was working as a coach in his team (on top my day job), helping students to plan, prepare and execute the strategies required to land the jobs they wanted.

Initially doing this for a bit of pocket money, I was finding the process of guiding people towards the success they were after an immensely rewarding experience.

The results I had witnessed some of my clients achieve were nothing short of mind-blowing! It really made me enjoy what I was doing.

A few years later, I began working with people, not just on their careers, but other areas of their lives. We all have dreams, aspirations and passions that are unique to us, and the ability to inspire people towards living their best life was something that truly excited me.

Fast forward a few years to July 6th 2012. Having gone from failing a year at university to seeing my first company I worked with go bankrupt and coming out buzzing with excitement from The Coaching Academy’s free two day workshop, I clicked the ‘Send’ button on an email that would mark the beginning of taking my interest in the field of human potential to the next level.

Howard Thurman sums it up best when he says, “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

I remember coming home from work and unpackaged this big rectangular box. The first thought that came into my head was, “Wow!! There is a mountain of material to get through here!!”

Given how excited I was about starting however, I sat down, got my diary out and began planning how I was going to throw myself into this adventure and complete the Personal Performance Diploma within 12 months.

Accelerator Days became a monthly event (something I consider to be one of the best things about being a student, because of the fantastic relationships you will build and environment of positivity that must be experienced) and I was practicing my coaching skills every week to ensure the quality of my sessions was always improving.

And within months of starting, I had scheduled my first practical assessment! I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous, but one of the best tips I can give you is to not delay booking your first one. The feedback you get is invaluable and it will make you aware of areas that require further attention, such that you are on the right track from an early stage.

I qualified in July 2013, exactly 12 months after I had enrolled. And what a feeling it was!

Since then, I have set up my website and social media presence, spoken at some of the UK’s top universities and will be featured in Steve Forbes’ upcoming book SuccessOnomics, which is expected to be released in Spring 2014.

It has been a phenomenal experience, but the journey is only just beginning.

It is early days. Unknown territory lies ahead. And there is still lots to learn. But what I am happy about is that I am doing something that makes me feel alive and have amassed a solid foundation of knowledge from which to build upon.

I wish you the best of luck in completing your qualifications and hope that my story inspires you towards your own success. As Stephen Covey would say, “Begin with the end in mind.” Notice what things will look like once you have achieved what you want to. When do you want this to happen? How will it feel once it has? And how will it impact other areas of your life?

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