Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about business coaching. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any additional questions.
What is Business Coaching?
Business coaching is a relatively new profession that helps business owners plan more strategically, take focused action steps and improve their bottom line results. A recent study by the National Federation of Independent Businesses found that 70% of small business owners turn to spouses or family members for the majority of their business advice – and statistics tell us that most small businesses eventually fail!
This is where a business coach comes in. Business coaches meet with the owner on a regular basis for an extended period of time to set goals, create strategy, ensure actions are being taken, provide tools, train the owner and staff, measure results, and refine strategies. Simply put, a qualified business coach helps you get results. Period.
With that said, “coaching” has become an overused term that can mean many things. There are life coaches, executive coaches, career coaches, health coaches, personal coaches, sales coaches, transition coaches, leadership coaches, and so on. As for business coaches, anyone can pose as a “Business Coach” – including individuals with no real proven business training and applied management background. In other words, be careful in your selection. Approaching well-recognized certifying bodies, such as the Professional Business Coaches Alliance, is a good place to start.
Is this another name for consulting?
No. While a business coach definitely can offer consulting services, a consultant does not coach clients. A pure consultant is basically a specialist dealing with a certain area of a business. For example, a consultant might be able to tell you how to eliminate waste in a manufacturing process. Typically, a consultant is project/problem specific, and details his findings in a report that recommends a plan of action for resolving the issue(s) at hand.
A true business coach…
- concentrates on your whole business, instead of just one single area;
- focuses on long-term strategies broken down into specific action steps (as opposed to preparing formal reports that sit on a shelf somewhere once completed);
- targets the growth/improvement of the business AND the owner (a more holistic and effective approach);
- commits to a long-term process of transformation (the coach doesn’t leave once a specific project is completed).
A coach is there for you – 24 hours a day – to help you, guide you, motivate you, improve you, and improve your entire business.
What should I look for in a Business Coach?
In the following video, Eric highlights four key areas to examine when selecting a coach for your business. This important decision could be the most important investment you ever make in yourself and your business!
What do we do when we meet?
Initially, you meet with your coach on a regular basis, and the focus is getting to know you and your business. Together we will assess your areas of greatest need, identify untapped opportunities, and develop an action plan for moving forward. At every subsequent meeting you are assigned specific actions to complete before your next coaching session, and we discuss your previous week’s progress, i.e. what you did specifically to advance your business since we last met. We also exchange ideas about upcoming projects or challenges, and develop another action plan for the upcoming week. Clarity about the “next step” is always the top priority.
How does a coach help me to improve my business?
As the owner, it is up to you to lead your company to success. However, you may not be conscious of all of the areas of your business that, if addressed, can have massive results. Most often, business owners are too busy working “in the business” (performing everyday tasks) to work “on the business” (evaluating and strategizing for better results).
We help you maximize your strengths. You will be trained on leadership, relationships, strategy, motivation, productivity, and organizational skills. As you learn to become more effective personally, your business will become more successful! Simple.
Think about professional sports teams for a moment. What is the coach’s role? The coach doesn’t play the game; he/she watches how their team plays the game and provides valuable feedback so that their players can perform at the top of their game. It’s no different for the owner of a small to medium-sized business. A business coach provides the kind of input and training that will enable you to get the results you want! Watch the following video for more.
This sounds too good to be true...
That depends on your perspective. Think back to the dreams that you had when you started your business. Do you have the same passion now that you did then? Probably not.The coaching process is the best of both worlds. By focusing on personal effective and business effectiveness, you get a well-rounded approach to growth that will lead to significant results. Once you know what you want in your life, develop a plan that will provide it, and take congruent actions on a consistent basis, your momentum increases and your enthusiasm returns. Business becomes fun again, and your profits start to climb! There’s NOTHING like it.
I'm already doing well. Why do I need a coach?
The truth is you may not need a coach. You may not even be “coachable”, i.e. you may already “know everything.” However, all top performers in the world – athletes, musicians, businesspeople and more – have mentors, coaches and advisors.
Even the most successful businesspeople are not shy about discussing their personal development and their use of a coach. Bob Nardelli, CEO of Home Depot, said in an article in the July 1, 2002 issue of Fortune magazine, “I absolutely believe that people, unless coached, never reach their maximum capabilities.” John Russell, managing director of Harley-Davidson Europe Ltd., said, “I never cease to be amazed at the power of the coaching process to draw out the skills or talent that was previously hidden within an individual, a process which invariably finds a way to solve a problem previously thought unsolvable.”
In studies of successful individuals, certain characteristics are always present. First, they are goal-oriented. Second, they are very persistent. Finally, they have a person or group of people that they meet with regularly to brainstorm and learn!
Simply ask yourself: on a scale of 1-100, how do I perform right now? If your honest answer is less than 100, a coach can help you. Period. Check out the following video for more information.
How long does the coaching process take?
Have you ever attended a conference or seminar and came home charged up, ready to implement great changes in your business? If you’re like most people, it is quite likely that you changed very little, and that you probably forgot everything from the seminar within ninety days or less. The same principle shows up in reading. Studies show that the average business book is never read beyond the first chapter! And even if you manage to read books in their entirety, like most you struggle to implement the ideas and concepts presented. Don’t feel bad. You’re not alone.
The coaching process is not a magic wand, but it is a powerful ally in transforming your life and business. Creating lasting change is a process of acquiring skills and developing positive habits. Coaching is a process to help you learn new strategies and behaviours, and to develop positive congruent habits that maximize your life and drive your business forward. The process is important in creating real change that lasts.
That’s why Breakthrough Coach recommends a coaching relationship of 12-18 months. Watch the following video for more on the coaching process.
What about the rest of my team? Do you offer anything for them?
For our seminars, we cover topics such as team and morale building, developing the mission and vision, marketing more effectively, sales effectiveness, customer service excellence, personal effectiveness, leadership, goal setting, and many more. We can custom design them for your particular business also.
Getting input from your employees goes a long way to them taking a level of “ownership” in the success of the business. Since they will play a part in shaping the ideas that develop, they will have a great level of buy-in and commitment to your business. The results can be incredible.
In addition, we are available to work one-on-one with some of your key people in areas that challenge them!
I'm not sure that it applies to my industry/market...
Coaching only applies to your business if you want:
- More prospects inquiring about your service or product
- To sell a higher percentage of these leads and increase your revenues
- To serve your customers in such a way that they buy from you more often and refer you to their friends and family on a regular basis
- To increase the profitability and efficiency of your business
- To be a better leader and a more focused and energized individual
- Better systems to run your business
- More effective, engaged employees who work harder and stay with you longer
- Freedom to make more and work less
If these don’t apply to your industry, then perhaps coaching isn’t for you. See the following video for more information.
How much does coaching cost?
In most cases – nothing! In fact, you should be able to make more than enough in the growth of your company to pay for the coaching. And, the results last for years after the coaching process has ended. It’s the greatest investment that you will ever make!
Consider this. It would cost you more to hire a receptionist to answer your phones for a year than it will cost you to hire a coach. Given the fact that several industry studies have demonstrated a ROI (return on investment) of 4 to 10 times, enlisting the help of a business coach could very well be the most lucrative investment you ever make!
How does working with Breakthrough Coach help me and my company grow?
Breakthrough Coach works with you on a regular basis to set goals, determine strategies, prepare action plans, and hold you accountable. The end game? To get you and your business performing at the highest levels possible.
We are not magicians. We can’t promise that you will achieve instant success by working with us. But we do promise that the application of the basic tenets of successful businesses that we help you implement will do FAR more to move you to your goals than any consultant, seminar, or discussion with a relative ever can!
We can help you drive more people to your business, sell to them more effectively, service them better so they buy more often, manage your finances and your employees more efficiently, create the systems you need to free yourself from your business, and more! As a result, you will have more money and free time to do things outside of work that you enjoy. What we do works! Period.
Take the following “3 Minute Business Evaluation” to determine if you might benefit from working with us.