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Should You Offer Coaching In Your Business?

Uncategorized Dec 08, 2019

Are you considering if you should offer coaching services? Is it a role you want? Can you truly help and also stay scalable?

You already know that by gaining new skills and unlocking their potential, any willing person can completely overhaul their life. Coaching isn’t just creating a pathway for someone and telling them to follow it. Far from it! It’s late nights, early mornings, stress, sweat, and sometimes tears as you walk through growth journeys alongside your clients. So is it worth incorporating it in your business?

You’re not alone. I’m here to help you learn:

  • Your role as a coach and how it’s different from other roles
  • How to apply coaching to your business
  • What kind of services can you offer and stay scalable?
  • Guidelines for great coaching

What does a coach do?

A coach is someone who uses their experience and skills to help others achieve goals by asking questions and helping clients discover the answers they held inside all along. Coaches can work across industries, but they are usually specialised to one area of expertise.

For example, a business coach could have many years of experience in scaling large enterprises, but no experience in growing startups. That business coach would be best suited to helping bigger corporate businesses meet their profit growth goals than trying to help a startup to reach their seeding goals, simply because they’d know better which questions to ask. Whether you focus on business, weight loss, personal development, beauty, cooking, or any industry, a coach guides people towards manifesting what they want most out of life. People need help thinking about things and making big decisions. 

When considering if you should add coaching as a service in your business, you should understand these four main roles in which you can serve your customers in your business: 

TEACHING

Your clients might need some process, knowledge or skills to help them reach their goal. This is where you act as a teacher. Teaching requires you to explain the necessary information and its relevance to the goals they seek to achieve. 

You will need to develop an effective and easy-to-understand teaching strategy and adapt to your clients’ learning styles to make sure they get the best out of what you are offering them. 

COACHING

At your core as a coach, you are helping your client to make decisions. The end goal is for them to turn their aspirations into accomplishments to the best of their ability. Along the way, you will be pushing them to unlock and work from their greatest potential. You will help your client maximise their resources to perform the best that they can and address the barriers holding them back from achieving what they want.

MENTORING

As a mentor, you use a combination of experience and compassion to explain to them how they can best navigate their way through the situation.  A mentor has personal experience in the problem area and has solved similar problems themselves. They give specific recommendations and outline possible answers. 

A great mentor with specific experience can walk the mentee through a complex situation and let the mentee stand on their shoulders achieving their goals. Quite often a mentor also has a network and alliances to benefit from. A mentor does not do the job for the mentee but provides experience to the inexperienced.

COUNSELLING

Like the mentor, a counsellor also is experienced in the area the person needs help. As a counsellor you can either provide valuable information that will strengthen your customers towards their goals or simply solve the problem for them. All done-for-you work is in this category. Your customers pay for your experience and for your time. They are not necessarily interested in learning how you did the work. A good example is legal counselling to comply with GDPR (data protection). You just want to comply with legal requirements but not necessarily acquire skills and knowledge. 

In your business, you can offer a range of these services - and also combine them. Sometimes, your client might require blunt honesty and your professional opinion. Other times, they need a guiding hand to learn how to do it themselves or to make up their mind about an important decision. Identifying exactly what kind of help they need is necessary before you can design your offer and the role you should act in.

Apply Coaching Strategy to Your Business

Through my Personal Brand CEO program, I teach my clients how to be a coach instead of a salesperson. By applying a coaching strategy, they are able to shift the focus of a sales call from a product to personal development. My clients help their potential customers decide if they are ready to activate the transformation they desire in their life. 

Using a similar method, you can turn your personal brand business into a life-changing experience that generates daily motivation and support for your clients.  

Ask the hard questions

Your clients need to understand what to expect from working with you and coaching will help them achieve their goals. The best communication is open, clear, and honest. Let them know in advance, it will not all be within their comfort zone and that you’ll be asking tough or quite direct questions as well seeking to getting your clients to acknowledge truths that they might not want to.

Here are a few challenging questions you will often ask along the way: 

  • “Can you tell me more about ________?”
  • “Be honest - what is standing in your way?”
  • “What are you most afraid of?”
  • “If this primary obstacle didn’t exist, how would your life look?”
  • “What do you need most right now?”
  • “What does success look like to you?”
  • “Why not?”

 Inspire change by being a role model

To keep your clients interested and focused it’s important to firmly guide them and hold them accountable until the goals are reached. Make a plan and keep it flexible enough to react to the challenges that always show up. Be patient and stay consistent.

Truly great coaches lead the way by igniting critical thinking in their clients towards change, so they can improve and stay the course. Inspiring change requires passion, vision, patience and the willingness to ask new questions. Your clients need help discovering the paths that will lead them to the best possible outcome for their goals. Paths that are unfamiliar to them. They need you to inspire them to dare. Let them know that you are also a curious and passionate learner yourself and that one of your best secrets to success is your willingness to fail fast and experiment. 

Guidelines to Great Coaching

Your job is to make sure that the people you coach arrive at their full potential! As you take each step with your clients, here are tips that will keep you grounded and help you deliver the most beneficial coaching to your clients. 

1.   Work with people that are ready and committed

Not everybody is coachable. Everybody can be coached to greater results but a desire to grow and seek clarity is required. Work with people that are prepared for what you are offering. Working with someone who isn’t ready or committed to achieving their goals is a waste of your time and theirs. Someone who isn’t committed will make constant excuses or be unavailable or uncoachable. 

Avoid this frustration by having a process that people have to go through before you accept them as clients. Maybe you can conduct interviews, or create a slightly challenging sign up process, you need people to prove that they actually want to reach a little higher and go a little further. Personally, I include a questionnaire and reject anyone who did not fill out the form. Great copywriting can also help you repel those who are not really committed to change.

2.   Never stop learning

Work on yourself, learn, read, attend workshops and get around inspiring people. Keep yourself knowledgeable about present issues in your field. That way, you can be informed enough to relate to your clients’ problems. Without this practice, your information will be outdated, and you won’t be able to relate to the issues  your clients are facing. 

Coaching is all about asking questions. The more you know about the field in which you coach your clients, the more you’ll be able to ask the right questions. You’ll be able to open their minds to new possibilities and push them in their growth. 

3.   Establish trust

Your clients are trusting you with the change they want in their life. It’s important that you stay consistent in what you say, and what you deliver. When you do this, your clients know they can rely on you. 

Trust will open levels of communication that you won’t expect. Once you show your clients that you genuinely care about them, coaching becomes easier and progress towards your clients’ goals can be made faster. 

4.   Create and share boundaries

Let your client know what hours you are available to them and the topics you cover. Be clear on what you can and can’t help them with. Also give them a chance to create their own boundaries. 

Boundaries help you to see their limitations, and respect them in the way they need. A coach and client relationship requires high levels of accountability. Communicate and refer to your standard for attendance, work ethic, attitude and other things that are important to your success as a team. It’s your responsibility to motivate your clients and move the relationship in a positive direction. 

5.   Time management & Scalability

You can offer coaching in many variations. Maybe you are selling hour-for-hour. Maybe a package with 5 or 10 sessions. You can offer coaching in 1:1 or 1:many products. You can combine coaching with other strategies to get them to their desired destination. In my business, the ‘Personal Brand CEO’ program is a mix of weekly lectures (teaching) and implementation power hours (group coaching and hands-on problem-solving in plenum). There is also an individual coaching component for those who opted in for that.

If you are offering long-term individual coaching programs, you will need to set clear boundaries for the extent of your service. Also, having a set communication system will work wonders for your time management. 

Trying to find emails and messages all over the place is not the best way to access client files and updates. You will need a record of what progress your clients are making, in a database or task management software that allows you to manage each one separately. Here are some coaching management and scheduling tools that can help you improve time management with your clients:

That said, you should figure out how to move from individual coaching to group coaching as fast as you can so you are not limiting the growth of your company to the number of hours you are able to sell. 

6.  Know yourself

Coaching your clients will expose all of your weak points. Before you start coaching, you have to be truly honest and vulnerable with yourself. Ask yourself these questions:

  • What are my best skills? Where can I be stronger?
  • What am I most passionate about?
  • Where did I go wrong in the journey that I’m coaching?
  • How did I get through my most difficult problems?
  • Why do I love what I do?
  • Why am I coaching?

If you can confidently answer these questions, you will find yourself winning people over with authenticity. You will discover things about yourself that you may not have known before. Love that you are growing.

So should you offer coaching in your business?

Individual coaching and coaching in small groups is one of the best ways to dig deeper and understand the underlying beliefs and real barriers to your customers success. Therefore I always recommend to offer some sort of coaching in the first stages of your business. There is a big difference in how you approach you role as a guide for your tribe and which role you act in should reflect the issues they are facing. That said, mindset issues are almost always a part of any desired transformation and adding an element of coaching to your product mix provides the perfect opportunity to build a real human connection with your tribe. There are ways to stay scalable and be a great and approachable guide.

If you need more help with coaching, please leave a comment on this article. Make sure to check out Personal Brand CEO (https://www.malenebendtsen.com/personal-brand-ceo) for more information on how you can incorporate coaching in your business. 

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