What to Look for in a Coach

It’s easy for air talents or Program Directors to shy away from coaching. I get that. For one thing, most people think “critique” when they hear the word “coaching”. They assume that the process will be a negative one, like being called into the principal’s office for throwing spitballs.

(I would actually just work with you on making the spitball nice and tight so it flies well, and then making sure you’re aiming at the right person.)

Here’s the process—or at least, my process: I’m not looking for what you do wrong so there’s always something to pick on and correct. A coaching experience based on that negative foundation isn’t going to do you (or me) any good. Yes, we’ll address whatever holes there might be in your education or techniques, and correct them, but that’s not the real purpose. The real idea is first, to find out what you do best. And second, gradually get to where that’s all you do.

There are several other fine coaches—Valerie Geller, Randy Lane, Tracy Johnson—that work the same way. But not all of them. When you get ready for a coach—or as a PD, come to the realization that, just like a baseball manager, you need a pitching or hitting coach—choose wisely.

There’s not ONE pro golfer, baseball player, or football player who doesn’t have a swing coach, batting coach, or position coach. You hear actors all the time talking about who taught them. Tom Brady has a coach. (A head coach, an offensive coordinator, anda quarterbacks coach, as a matter of fact.) Butch Harmon, Hank Haney and others have worked with dozens of the best golfers in the world. I don’t know Butch, but Haney is a friend, and Hank’s methods and mine are amazingly similar. Yes, he’ll point out what you do wrong, but he’ll help you build your game around your STRENGTHS.

Andthat’swhat you should be looking for.


Tommy Kramer is a talent coach for Radio, TV, & Voice Acting, as well as a member of the Texas Radio Hall of Fame.

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