Do you know who my favorite coach was? It was my dad!
He spent a lot of time coaching all of us at baseball, softball and swimming. When I was a kid, I used to have to shop in the husky section of Robert Hall to get clothes.
I was the fat kid who could not run the bases or swim. Somehow, my dad always found a way to get me in to bat and to play first base, so I got a chance to feel just as special as all the other kids.
That is what a good coach does. They get the most out of you to help you feel special. There are all kinds of coaches. I used a sports coach to help me improve my golf game.
Afterwards, I was hitting the ball 20 to 30 yards farther due to increased strength and flexibility. There are life coaches who can help you work through rough spots to maximize your potential. The kind of coach I want to focus on in this blog is a business coach. A business coach has only one focus, which is to help you grow your business.
One my favorite sayings is … every doctor needs a doctor, every mentor needs a mentor, every coach needs a coach!
After writing my book, I knew I needed help to market it better and to get more speeches to promote myself and my business. I hired a speaking coach, but she turned out to be much more than that. She started me down the road to building my brand, creating products to sell and getting better-paid speaking gigs. I can truly say I saw a positive return on my investment.
I have seen, met and even worked with various coaches throughout my career. Anybody can hang the shingle and say that they are a coach. You can pay to go through certification programs, like the ICF (International Coach Federation Professional Certified Coach Credential). However, what you really want is somebody who has been there and done that. If you’re trying to take $10,000 and turn it into a $20 million company, you need to find someone who has done that before. Not just somebody who has worked at a $20 million company. You need to find somebody that has achieved the level of success that you aspire to.
A good coach is a mixture of three different people.
Coaching comes in many flavors and price points. Most coaches will offer you the taste of coaching through short one-on-one evaluations. Some will offer you the ability to get into group coaching sessions, which are part mastermind, yet still offer you the benefits of private coaching at a lower price point. Finally, there is the one-on-one coaching, which gives you the full attention that you may need to succeed. Deciding what type of coach you need really just depends on where you’re at and what you can afford.
So what can a coach do and what should you expect?
Finding a great coach is not a whole heck of a lot different than trying to find a great plumber. You could try going through the Yellow Pages, if you can even find one of those books. You could do a Google search online to find directories and see who gets the best reviews. Or, you can reach out to people in your industry and asked them who they know and who they use. You can also inquire within your LinkedIn and Facebook groups. If somebody is actively using a coach, they may not be willing to share their name for fear of losing them.
The next thing you want to do is have a conversation with the coach. How do you know if he or she will be a good match? The first thing have to ask yourself is do you need your butt kicked or do you need to be nurtured. You might have to ask some outside influencers that question first, but it really needs to be answered. Then, you have to get a sense of the coach’s style, expectations and their level of commitment. Finally, you have to assess your ability to actually work with them and their program.
That really depends on you, your expectations and your business. I’ve worked with coaches that have far exceeded my expectations and paid for themselves 4 to 5 times over. I’ve coached some business people on Internet Marketing, who have increased their revenues by over 50% in less than a year. I have worked with some coaches that offered me little to no benefit. I have also coached clients, who knew they needed help, loved the progress that we made, but never had the time or commitment to execute what needed to be done for them to be successful.