What is a business coach?
A business coach is someone who works with entrepreneurs or business owners to develop a strategic plan and achieve their goals. A good business coach will understand your company’s needs, identify any potential barriers, and advise you on the best way to overcome them.
A business coach provides regular, individualised one-on-one support to help you make the changes and improvements that will get your business back on track. This requires a good fit between you and your coach, as well as an understanding of what you want from coaching.
Business coaches can help many people, from very small business owners with one or two employees to nationally recognised companies with thousands of staff and millions of customers.
How is a business coach different to a business mentor or business consultant?
A business coach is different to a business mentor – someone who can provide impartial advice and guidance from a distance. They can be useful to you, even if you are not a very small business owner.
Business mentors often advise on the development of new ideas, products or services and can make recommendations about how best to pursue them.
A business coach, however, is more concerned with managing change in the short-term and making your existing business practises more effective. They, therefore, focus on helping you think through your priorities over an agreed period of time (usually 2 years or less) and developing strategies to help you get back on track.
A business coach is different to a business consultant, who might work in an advisory capacity for your organisation or as part of a team helping you make strategic decisions about your company’s direction and future. Coaches, on the other hand, provide individual support that helps you think through your own situation and develop personal business strategies.
How is a business coach different to a life coach?
A business coach works with you to help you achieve your business objectives. A life coach can help you take a more holistic approach to achieve goals that may not directly relate to work, such as getting fit and healthy. One of the things that both life and business coaches do is look at your motivation for making changes and help you move forward positively.
What are the benefits of having a business coach?
Having a business coach can help you get your focus back on your work and take an objective look at what is happening in your company. This can be a good way to focus on the things that are going well, while avoiding the pitfalls that might result from ignoring problems.
Having regular access to a trusted friend and colleague who will listen to what’s on your mind and hopefully share their own thoughts about things might also offer some employee benefits, if they’re available too. Having a coach can also give you the opportunity to change some areas of your business that others would feel uncomfortable with.
Business coaching focuses on the areas where you want to improve in order to succeed, growing your confidence, competence and clarity.
Where can I find a business coach?
One of the best ways to find a business coach is to ask people you know who work for successful companies. Some coaches work with organisations and big businesses, while others specialise in helping small business owners. It’s also a good idea to ask colleagues and clients for their recommendations. But be careful with recommendations as it might be a person who was right for someone else but not what you need.
You can check on YouTube, google search, social media, and other media platforms to see if there is anyone who can offer you the help that you need.
You can also contact business associations or local networking organisations in your community for recommendations, and read the websites of coaches you think might fit what you need.
You may need to change your approach depending on what you need a coach for:
- A small business
- An online business or e-commerce store
- A mature business
- A entrepreneur or startup
- Coaching for executive/senior managers (or coaches for senior management)
What are the different types of business coach?
Here are some of the different types of coaches available for your business.
- Strategy & planning business coach – Coaches form strategic options, study your businesses unique strengths and weaknesses, and make recommendations to improve your business & products/services.
- Leadership skills business coach – Builds leadership skills for managers
- Personal development business coach – Coaches you in areas of personal development like family, leisure time, children and aging.
- Emotional business coaches – Break through barriers that keep you from your goals and dreams.
- Financial business coaches – Help you grow your business & manage the bottom line costs.
- Business & marketing business coaches – Help you focus on how to grow your business through marketing
- Online business coaches – Online business coaching can be an effective way in which to enable and guide you in your personal development. It can help you achieve a greater sense of self-esteem, confidence, professional competence and motivation.
- Business development business coach – Help you maximise the potential of your business.
- Business & social media management business coaches – Create the network that leads to success
It’s important when looking for a coach to find the right business coach for you and your company. For example, you wouldn’t want an e-commerce coach if your focus is on building a software company. As a result, it’s best to speak with several potential coaches and ask them about their approaches.
What is typical in the business coaching process?
It’s essential that you understand the process of a particular business coach in order to know whether it will fit your needs. Here are some common parts of business coaching in order that you understand the overall process.
The moment you ask for coaching, there is a first step that can be deemed as consultation. It’s about two people in conversation, and with this step, the business coach can find out your desired objectives and learn more about your business, its current status and its potential further. In most cases, it’s also in the consultation stage where you’ll receive an estimate of the expected cost of the coaching service. This may vary depending on the size of your company/organisation or industry-specific factors.
At this stage, the business coach will review all your business objectives, business goals, and current status. To do this, the business coach will analyse your business and a few of your strengths as well as weaknesses. Together with the consultation stage, this step of process is essential in helping you to formulate a personalised plan of action. It’s the goal that you want to accomplish in one year, two years or even next month. As a result, metrics will be identified to measure your progress and potential achievements, and you’ll also be able to define an action plan based on these measures and determine the most appropriate strategy for improving your business. In order to complete this step, the coach must have a thorough understanding of your industry and its specific challenges. It’s at this point that the coach constructs their action plan and set of solutions to achieve objectives. The goal here is to make sure that your goals will be realised within a reasonable period of time and with minimal resources.
The implementation stage is when the coach will closely monitor all your business activities, including meetings with clients, informal management sessions and/or vital tasks. A business coach will also provide input for new initiatives, routine activities, as well as the ongoing management of your business. In general, it’s in this stage that changes are made in order to see profound results.
In this stage, the business coach will provide you with results of assessment and implementation, which can be used for further developments and adjustments. This stage can also be the ideal time to address any issues that may be impacting your business, as well as evaluate what needs to be improved or changed in your company. This is done through a critical review and analysis of all processes. You will also receive recommendations on areas that need improvement to ensure success in the long run.
- Follow up
In order to make sure that the goals and objectives you set for your business will be reached, a business coach will stay in touch. This gives you chances to improve your performance.
Business coaching requires commitment from business owners to change their mindset about growth and progress. They must learn how to apply new tools and strategies for improvement in order to have a positive impact on their businesses.
A business coaching session typically lasts an hour to 90 minutes and can take place either in person or by phone. In a typical session, the coach will ask you questions about your business and help you evaluate your situation and come up with ideas and goals for your future.
Coaches may also ask questions about your current situation and the decisions you’ve made that have contributed to your challenges. This allows them to understand where you’re coming from, which can help them give you useful information and insight.
What is typical with a business coaching service?
Here are some common ways that coaches work with their clients.
- 1:1 coaching.
- Regularity is the most common practice among many coaches.
- Customised Coaching based on a strategy to help you change patterns and achieve long term goals.
- Group Coaching involving more than one person to a coach as a way to share different approaches and learn from each other.
- Seminar coaching where you get up close and personal with the coach for weeks at a time in an intensive setting.
- Virtual coaching which provides one on one experience with a coach via a phone or video chat.
- Teambuilding Coaching designed to help your whole team achieve success.
Coaches typically will charge a fee per session or have packages of sessions. Having an ongoing commitment to work on your business with someone can help you get more out of the coaching experience.
About my service
I offer mostly online coaching to online entrepreneurs and small businesses who are struggling to grow. That’s my own experience level. If this would help you, please do get in touch.