Jack Canfield, Tony Robbins, Bill Campbell…You may have heard of these names before. On the off chance you haven’t, they’re some of the best business coaches in the world.
There are coaches for businesses? Why, yes, there are.
And if you’re looking to know more, here’s an ultimate guide on what you need to know about the world of business coaching.
What Is Business Coaching?
Coaching, to put it simply, is helping someone unlock their potential. And so, business coaching is helping entrepreneurs and owners unlock the potential of their businesses, be they big or small.
Any company that has a big vision or a big goal would like to find somebody who can help in a specific area of a challenge that they may be experiencing.— Ajit Nawalkha, co-founder of Mindvalley Coach
Under the umbrella of business coaching, there are subtypes, also known as niches. There are leadership, management, marketing, corporate, and even executive coaching services. It all depends on the needs of the business itself.
For example, former executive chairman and CEO of Google Eric Schmidt has stated they owe their success to Bill Campbell. The “trillion dollar” business coach has helped Eric, as well as other business leaders like Apple’s Steve Jobs and Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, not only solve professional problems but also process his own hopes and fears.
Regardless of which niche a business coach sits in, they—as with all other coaches, such as a relationship, career, or life coach—are taught to never tell their clients what to do or push their own agendas. They are there merely to facilitate their clients’ goals and on occasion, challenge any preconceived “brules” (short for what Vishen, founder of Mindvalley calls “bullsh*t rules”).
In fact, a 2018 survey shows the top three things business owners look for help with are human resources, business expansion, and start-up assistance. And with the help of a business coach, they are able to do just that.
What’s the difference between coaching and consulting?
Oftentimes, there’s a lot of confusion when it comes to coaching and consulting. It’s important to understand the difference in order to figure out the coaching niche and model one wants to consider.
When it comes to a business coach, it’s someone who comes in “more like a curiosity-driven personnel,” according to Ajit Nawalkha, co-founder of Mindvalley Coach (formerly known as Evercoach by Mindvalley). He explains that with their coaching skills, they’ll ask the right kinds of questions and enable the right kind of people in order to find a solution within the organization.
A consultant, on the other hand, would come in and ask for data. They’re often looking at market numbers, cost per lead, cost per acquisition, and so on. And with that data, they’ll suggest what the company should and could do based on the numbers that are presented.
With that being said, Ajit discovered, through his experience, that business coaching alone doesn’t cut it. Instead, he found the combination of coaching and consulting was more effective in getting the results his clients sought. And he now teaches this methodology in the Certified Business Coaching program at Mindvalley.
Local vs. online business coaches—which one is better?
When it comes to meeting up with the client, there are various avenues a business coach can take. They can do their session online, face-to-face, local, international, one-on-one, or group coaching—depending on what’s agreed upon.
Both local and online options have their benefits:
- Local business coaching. There’s a certain energy that comes with physical meet-ups and that can be a huge plus for coaches. They’ll be able to better read their client’s moods and body cues. Moreover, there’s more focus and fewer distractions during a face-to-face session.
- Online business coaching. Virtual meet-ups offer a more casual environment and are cost-efficient (there’s no commute). Additionally, this option gives coaches the chance to go beyond their borders and take in international clients, if they wish.
There’s not really a better or worse in this case; only what is most comfortable for the coach and their client.
What Does a Business Coach Do?
A business coach is often brought in to help a company:
- Identify their current standings (be it in operation management, marketing, finance, or any area of the business that needs tending to)
- Evaluate that situation
- Revamp their vision or create a new one
A business coach is somebody who is brought into an organization or a business to be able to help either overall growth of the business or certain elements of the business.— Ajit Nawalkha, co-founder of Mindvalley Coach
The coach, then, helps effectively fill in those gaps by guiding the different team members and leaders toward the defined business goals.
Let’s take a look at NFL teams, for instance. There are a number of moving parts in each team. While the focus of owners and top executives is on growing the business, the focus of players and coaches is on winning the trophy. In between, there’s a gap.
The gap could be the understanding of:
- The business versus the ground realities
- Why things aren’t working smoothly, or working at all
- The talent, education, and information needed for the team as a whole to be able to make progress
What happens in a coaching session?
Business coaching can vary from session to session and from person to person. Regardless of the arrangement, it’s always advisable for the client to bring their full selves so that the sessions are about working on the business instead of in it.
The initial meeting will require the client to answer a number of meaningful questions. This helps both the coach and client to identify the gaps in the business and lay down a plan on how to fill them.
And in the sessions following that, the discussion encompasses what has happened since the last meeting and any action plans to take place until the next one. Using various coaching techniques, the coach will offer ideas or provide resources to help the client go from one step of their plans to the next.
Results a Business Coach Can Create—What Are They?
Now that we’ve covered the process of business coaching, we should talk about the outcomes as well, right? No matter the kind of enterprise that requires help, the results won’t cease to follow.
According to Ajit, “Getting a business coach is almost like hijacking success.” This might be the fastest way of creating results in the world, as oftentimes companies need someone who can look objectively at the gaps in their action plans. A professional coach will bring tremendous insights to improve the mechanisms of running various areas of the business.
That’s why business owners hire experts who have the intelligence and understanding to train them. They’re able to grasp the art of accountability for the newly implemented changes and increase their personal responsibility level. As a result, they can expect better products, better marketing strategies, and certainly, a better team culture.
In order to have a more accurate vision of the quality of professional coaching, here are some realistic results:
- Team members of a company can improve their work performance by 88% after effective business coaching.
- Productivity was shown to be increased by 53%.
- Costs of running the company could be reduced by 23%, representing an additional reason for CEOs to pay for coaching services, as it benefits them in the long term.
One of the greatest aspects of becoming a business coach is seeing the successful outcomes your clients will achieve through your input. The remarkable development will not only bring satisfaction to your clients but will also skyrocket your ascension in the coaching market.
How Do You Become a Business Coach?
Now, if you’re wondering, “Is business coaching a good career?”, check out these stats:
- 70% of coachees showed improvements in their work performance, relationships, and communication.
- 33% of founders who are mentored, a.k.a. coached, by successful entrepreneurs go on to be top performers.
- 89% of business owners who didn’t have a mentor wish they did.
It helps validate the effectiveness and thus, the need for business coaches. So if you’re interested in taking this path, here are three steps you can take:
1. Find your purpose
Passion’s always in fashion, especially when it comes to business coaching services. “If you’re not excited to work for the industry, if you are not excited to learn more about the industry, you will find it harder for you to convince people to actually hire you as a business coach,” Ajit explains.
So if you don’t already know, find out what it is that drives you. It’ll also help you determine your niche—the type of business coaching you can decide to focus on.
For example, if you’re a mother with a string of successful businesses, then that can be your niche. You can draw sympathy and empathy from your own experiences in order to help those who are going through the same.
With your purpose and niche in place, it’ll be that “thing” that gets you motivated and inspired in your coaching business journey.
How to identify your excitement:
Ajit advises to get a journal and answer these questions. Be thorough, intuitive, and authentic as possible:
- What are you excited about in becoming a business coach?
- Is there a particular industry that excites you more than the others?
- What size businesses are you most excited about supporting—small businesses, newly-founded businesses, or big corporations?
2. Identify your ideal clients
With coaching, you’re interacting with people on a personal level. And you’ll most likely find yourself having to shift your energies with different people. So choosing the ideal clients to work with is important.
“If you don’t know who is the person that you want to work with, you’ll end up with a lot of clients that may be able to give you the fees, but will not give you the joy of coaching with them,” says Ajit. “They won’t give you the satisfaction when they get a result because of your coaching experience.”
How to identify who you’re excited to work for:
It’s not always easy to say “no” to everyone you feel in synergy with. However, you can identify the type of people you want to work with by answering the following questions. Answer them in your journal.
- What are the types of people that you really want to engage with?
- Are you more excited to work with people who are kind-hearted or want to make a lot of money?
- Are you more excited with people who want to just set the greatest culture in the world or have great workplaces and so forth?
3. Define your coaching methodology
If your passion is your “why” and your ideal clients are your “who,” then your coaching methodology is your “how.” It’s essentially the technique or models you use to deliver transformations for your clients, to put it simply.
“Following an unproven methodology will not create consistent results, you’ll get mixed reviews from clients and might affect your reputation and brand,” Ajit explains. “It’s so important that you follow a model that fits your style, that has been proven repeatedly, and that you feel comfortable with.”
If you’re unsure of where to start, coaching certification programs, like the ones at Mindvalley, can provide you with an already existing methodology. They include a range of elements, such as strategies, techniques, systems, processes, and your innate ability as a coach.
With it, you can enroll your first clients to practice it and see what works and what doesn’t. From there, you can fine-tune it until you find your own style that’s the most consistent, effective, and transformative for your clients.
How to identify what kind of methodology you want to use:
Creating your own signature, proven coaching methodology isn’t as difficult as it seems. However, it won’t happen overnight. So be patient and stay curious. Always be willing to learn new ideas and hone your skills—that’s the secret, according to Ajit, to finding your unique methodology and succeeding as a coach.
To start off, in your journal, answer the following questions:
- What are your natural talents as a coach?
- Do you have any favorite coaching techniques? What are they?
- What are some of the biggest learnings and insights you’ve gained from taking courses or coaching events?
With your “why,” “who,” and “how” in place, it’s time to start changing lives.
You Are a Changemaker
Coaching is the universal language of change and learning.— CNN
In the United States alone, the 2022 market size of the business coaching industry is at US$11.2 billion and is expected to grow by 2.4%.
You, too, can be a part of that pie. Investing in yourself and joining a Business Coaching Certification Program, like the one at Mindvalley, can take you on a career path that creates life-changing ripple effects on businesses and their organizations.
While business coaching can absolutely make a difference in your clients’ lives, it also has the ability to change yours.
So don’t just dream about making an impact. Do it.