TALK | Management trainer and business coach Dr. Cornelia Topf: “It is important to clarify whether I can find the solution with this coach!”

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Cornelia TopfSupported for over twenty years Cornelia Topf as international management trainer and certified business coach well-known Company of all sizes and industries. In the interview, she talks about how much good coaching costs and what to look for when choosing the coach.

Her main areas include goal-oriented communication and success-oriented body language. In particular, the promotion of women is the PhD economist at heart. The managing director of metatalk Communication and Training in Augsburg is the author of many specialist books and guides that have been translated into numerous languages.

Here writes for you:


Simone Janson Simone JansonSimone Janson is publisherGerman Top20 blogger and Consultant for HR communication.


Mrs. Dr. Pot, coaching is a trend, hip and currently very trendy. Who else does that bring to the coach or the coachee?

Coaching is like many other transactions. At the end of the day or better: At the end of the coaching both sides must be satisfied. And that depends on what you have agreed on as an initial goal and how exactly you check this.

Every serious coach will pay attention to this. For me it's part of the professional ethic. And besides, with me every coachee has the opportunity to get out of the ongoing process if the price-performance ratio is (more) wrong for him. But there are said to be colleagues who say: "With me you have to sign at least for x meetings or for half a year, otherwise I won't even start."

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Is the investment in coaching always worthwhile? You hear about daily rates between 3.000 and 10.000 euros ...

I think that's the tip of the iceberg. The majority of coaches are likely to be significantly lower. And the amount of the fee is not always crucial for success. As well as not every Prada or Zegna can or wants to wear and possibly also looks well dressed in HundM.

The calculation is quite simple and as with any other investment also: What do I want to achieve and what budget constraints do I have? If I do not have any, I can shop really expensive, I have some, I will strive for the best price-performance ratio.

How much does a coaching cost you?

Differently, I do not like concrete sentences, which depends very much on the individual case. Depends on whether self-payer or company customer. Self-payers get cheaper. Depends also where the coaching takes place, with me in Augsburg or whether I must arrive or telephone coaching is.

Can you give an approximate guideline?

Well, my day rate moves around the 2.000 € without journey, whereby a session usually 2 hours lasts, thus hourly rate between 200 and 300 € + VAT. But these are really only rough indications!

Since you obviously do not deserve bad! Is not this a regular coaching industry? At first coaching was highly suspect, today it is a must. There is coaching everywhere, even if it is really about esoteric Schnick-Schnack.

Yes, you can see an extreme sweep. And there are still suspicious marginal areas. I offer only business coaching, so I work with my clients on professional issues.

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But I always experience that coaching is asked, where it is actually a traditional lecture or a workshop. This is still to be forgotten and correctable.

How do such misunderstandings come about?

Either the inquirer has no clear understanding of coaching or jumps on a fashionable trend because he believes that "coaching" sells better.

It becomes worse in my view, if in all possible areas salvation promises are made, which a serious coaching can not afford. So always check what is behind the term really hides.

Is not coaching often a dubious business with fear, stress and insecurity?

It may be, it is my observation, but rather rare. The clients have not fallen on their heads and have rarely had such a long history of suffering that they would grab any straw.

Clients come to me solely on the basis of a personal recommendation or because they have read one of my books. So you are quite well informed about me, even if they have never done a coaching and are unsure what exactly is happening there. An experienced coach can quickly provide security and build confidence.

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How do I find the best coach?

It is difficult to assess the question in advance when coaching: can I find the solution with this coach? If I invest 5.000 euros and the solution to my problem is worth an amount in excess, depending on the time invested, it may have been more worthwhile than if I only invest 3.000 euros but I have not found any solutions or ideas.

And how can I find out something like this before I go to 5.000 Euro?

With me one pays always only after the hour or after the whole process, that is different - individual clients, which one does not know and perhaps never sees again, pay after the hour, or get then your calculation. Companies as clients usually after completion of the process.

The financial risk remains manageable because you can always say: That was the last meeting. Advance payment never ever, that is the absolute blind flight and carte blanche for the coach, so to speak, earnings without performance ...

That may be the business model for some ...

That would be financially deadly for me, too, I am from the recommendation. Exception: long-term clients pay well in advance, in order to secure my scarce time. But they know me and know how I work!

How to separate the wheat from the chaff? Coaching is an unprotected profession. Is this job a playground for all those who have no education, for fortune-tellers and free-riders?

They can be found everywhere and, of course, the professions of journalists or trainers are more likely to attract such people.

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Before deciding on a coach you can ask: What kind of concerns do your clients typically come up with and what does an exemplary solution look like? And it is important to ensure that the coach has serious, recognized training.

And how do you find them?

This also depends on the duration of the training: In 5 days to the (good) coach is from my point of view simply not possible. My education has taken 1,5 years (400 hours). A few hints:

Is there such a thing as Gnadencoaching? Coaching as alibi, coworkers rausschmeiss? And how is this going on?

Yes, I've seen that before. The goal is to be thrown out more easily. You say to the employee in question: “Even the coaching didn't bring anything, so you will see that we have to part with you”.

Hopefully the labor judge, who may be involved, will see that more easily. I wrote something about this on my Metatalk Training page.

A pretty bad number ...

Sure, this is taurig and hurtful for the coachee and frustrating for the coach, if it is not pronounced. On the other hand, the coachee still has the chance to develop further and learn more about itself.

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This is always a good thing, even if the Rauswurf is already decided!

But in such a case, can the coach not be used as a scapegoat and a spoiler for cowardly managers?

Outsourcing is not new and exists in many areas. It has pros and cons and may or may not have anything to do with cowardice. For example, it may be easier to safeguard corporate peace when taking external responsibility. However, the coach must pay close attention to his reputation.

This is known by some consulting companies. When they come into the house, it can mean only layoffs, and everyone holds their breath. If a call is forwarded, the unfavorable initial situation leads to a trustworthy coaching.

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  1. Dagmar

    Am 55 J, female, married, 2 adult children, 3 cats, longtime experience as a sectarian. In less than a year, I wrote 542 applications and conducted 27 application interviews. I have to apply for Hartz IV in one month. What do you advise me?

  2. Monika Paitl

    In German: but indispensable for coaching prospective RT @CorneliaTopf: Which coach is right for me? - Very interesting!5t9Vg

  3. Ingo Neitzke

    In German: but indispensable for coaching prospective RT @CorneliaTopf: Which coach is right for me? - Very interesting!5t9Vg

  4. Cornelia Topf

    Which coach is right for me? - Very interesting!5t9Vg

  5. Monika Paitl

    Do I find the solution for this coach? - Very interesting!52uBO - Very interesting!52uCx

  6. Cornelia Topf

    Do I find the solution for this coach? - Very interesting!52uBO - Very interesting!52uCx

  7. Monika Paitl

    RT @CorneliaTopf: It is important to clarify: Can I find the solution with THIS coach? - Very interesting!4XN4p #Coaching #Coach

  8. Cornelia Topf

    It is important to clarify: Do I find the solution for this coach? - Very interesting!4XN4p #Coaching #Coach

  9. Hans-Peter Weyer

    Good article. RT @communications9: Interview with me on #Coaching on from @SimoneJanson: - Very interesting!4XN0g

  10. Monika Paitl

    RT @ Cornelia Pot: Interview with me on #Coaching on from @SimoneJanson: - Very interesting!4XN0g

  11. Cornelia Topf

    Interview with me on #Coaching on from @SimoneJanson: - Very interesting!4XN0g

  12. Simone Janson

    Interview with @CorneliaTopf about sense & nonsense v. Coaching and how to find the best coach for you

  13. Competencepartner

    Interview with management trainer and business coach Dr. Cornelia Topf: "It is important to clarify ...

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