Welcome back to Business & Budgets! In this post we will be covering business coaches, What they are. What they do. And whether or not you need to hire one. Let's first cover the different types of coaches and consultants, as well as how they assist your business.
Coach v. Consultant: Those these terms are typically used synonymously, though they are not completely the same. A coach is an individual who maps out the game plan then passes it over to you to run the ball. A consultant (in most cases) is more hands on, they not only map out the play, but they also will toss you the ball and participate in a layup when necessary. To keep things simple I will primarily use the term coach for the remainder of this post, but the information refers to either of these individuals.
TYPES OF COACHES
Startup: These coaches are extremely helpful when it comes to the foundational work involved with creating a new business. They work with you to do things such as incorporate your business, setup a website and create payment processes. These coaches can assist you with brainstorming income streams and creating business plans. Many people opt for these kinds of coaches when possible, instead of going the Legal Zoom route. You typically save quite a bit of time and money. Things are also more likely to be done correctly by an individual, than by a massive company that has its application process on autopilot.
Branding: These coaches are useful for those who are in need of developing a visual image to go with their brand. Developing a cohesive brand, logo, slogan and visual aesthetic are what these coaches specialize in. They will help you figure out your "why" and will teach you the best way to share that "why" with the world. They will teach you how to best present your brand on products and when advertising.
Marketing & Growth: These coaches are useful when you are seeking to grow your audience and your social media following. A marketing coach is most useful for businesses that already have a solid foundation, such as incorporation, website and social media accounts. Bring them on early if marketing isn't your thing, so that they can assist you with developing a strong audience to align with your new buyer friendly brand.
Strategy: These coaches work with you with a variety of things including foundation and daily strategy. These guys and girls will really assist you when it comes down to being more effective and executing your goals, in order to make your dreams a reality. These coaches will help you determine the best calendars, will help you develop a schedule, will introduce you to tools to automate your repetitive tasks and more. These coaches are extremely useful during a variety of phases of your business including early start-up and during growing stages, when you require new facilities, team members, etc.
Life: The more balls you add in the air, the harder it becomes to juggle. Some individuals hire a life coach to help them manage everything that's going on. Life coaches are helpful for those of us who start to feel a disconnect with our personal life as our business grows. It's like a therapist of sorts, for keeping us organized and helping us to balance when things feel extremely unstable. Life coaches can help you in a variety of areas from self-care, to parenting, to balancing your sex life. If you feel that you need a coach in the personal sector of life, don't be afraid to seek one out.
The most important thing to consider when hiring any of these coaches is their ability to help you get the job done. Things to look for to determine if the coach is legit are:
Reviews: on their site, on Google, on Yelp, on BBB, etc. Make sure the names look real and that the reviews aren't generic and repetitive. Look for authenticity with any video reviews that are posted about the coach. Always look outside of their website, they can post what they want there. Checking user controlled review sites, will give you the honest answers you are seeking.
Pay attention for scammer red flags. There are soooooo many scammers on the internet these days and honestly it is easy to be fooled. They have tons of followers, they post gravitating content, people say they love their products/services, etc. You buy into it because you hope to also get amazing results with your business. You buy the content, it turns out to be meaningless fluff, your business doesn't grow and you're down $500. That's why it is important to Google them outside of their social media accounts. What appears? Any lawsuits? Any comments on informative fraud sites? Do a thorough review before spending your hard earned coins.
Look at their personal accomplishments. Can they attest that they have done those things for themselves? If they say they can build flawless websites, confirm that theirs is beautiful. If they say they can help you save money running your business, ask about what they are doing to keep costs low within their business budget.
Once you take the time to ensure you have found a coach with good credentials, make sure you are ready to put in the work. The biggest mistake you can make as an entrepreneur who hires a business coach/consultant, is to pay for the lesson and not do the homework. Life just doesn't work in your benefit like this, there is a always a little heavy lifting required by you in order to reach your dreams. I can hand you a full cheat sheet for the test, but if you don't take the time to bubble in the answers, you're still leaving here with an F. Don't ever do yourself the disservice of paying for a coach and not doing the execution on your end. Keep in mind when doing your research, some people do this. When they do, they may get upset and write a bad review about the coach. So, don't let one bad review override the overall feedback you see about a coach you are interested in hiring.
Don't let pricing deter you from choosing the right coach for you. Remember that quality isn't cheap. I'm not saying to spring for the $10,000 coach, but I would suggest that you start with their $99 course to start absorbing the information you need to get to the next level. Hopefully this puts you in a position where you can then afford their next tiered product. On the other side of that coin, don't allow a high price to convince you that you will be receiving good quality, be sure to still diligently do your research before clicking the "Buy" button.
Keep your eyes open for a .mentor. You may not need a coach at all, but instead a good mentor who is willing to give you some time to get your questions answered regarding your business needs. I'll be honest and let you know, a good mentor is hard to find. But, be sure to utilize your resources to see who you can find. For example, some colleges have programs in place to assign you a mentor, their may be local business agencies in your area that do the same, be sure to keep your eyes open because you can't find anything you aren't looking for. Think about prior or current employers who encouraged your entrepreneurial journey, what can they teach you? Reach out to whoever you think would be a good fit as your mentor. Keep in mind this may cost you money or some free labor, just be sure to stay focused on what you are gaining in exchange.
Becoming a business owner is hard work, though you can make the process a lot easier for yourself by seeking out the help you need early on. You can't do it all, not effectively at least. So hire people who are strong in your weak areas. This will allow you to grow a better business more quickly and save yourself from a lot of wasted time, that would otherwise have been spent on trial and error. The services I offer here at Sonshine Enterprise are primarily a hybrid of startup and strategy services. I am a consultant, which means I will be as hands on as you need me to be. How much work you put in will be based on your skill set, the time you have available to invest and your budget. If you are ready to take your business to the next level by booking your initial coaching call with me click here, to learn about my other services head to my service page.
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