Finding the right business coach can be challenging. There are so many business coaches out there, all you have to do is jump on LinkedIn and look for a business coach and you'll see there are thousands and thousands of people with the words “Business Coach” in their title. This can make it very hard to choose the right coach for you.
Here are 7 tips that you can use to help you choose the right Business Coach:
Your business coach should have some experience. There are obviously a lot of people getting into the business coaching industry and that’s because it's easy to get into. There are no qualifications required and no regulations to adhere to. This makes it simple for anybody to become a business coach.
The challenge with that is a lot of people that are becoming business coaches do not have experience in growing a business or coaching people to grow a business. And that's hazardous. If you're in business and you're looking for a business coach, it's important that you work out whether the person that you're meeting with has got the suitable experience. This could be experience in building their own business or they have been trained to help you grow yours. A good business coach doesn't necessarily have had to have owned a business, but they certainly need to understand how a business grows and then also understand how to coach you to get the best possible results in your business.
Having some experience under their belt is a factor that you should consider. It is important to ask them how long they have been coaching and for referrals or reviews.
Business Set Up
One very important thing to find out before you start working with a business coach is to see whether they work alone or are part of a bigger team or franchise. The reason for this is because if a coach is part of a bigger organisation, it may be more beneficial to you. Somebody who's working on their own is unlikely to be doing a lot of additional learning. It doesn't mean they wouldn't be, but if they're not constantly exposed to other people who have different ideas, different skill sets and different opinions, then the likelihood is they're not getting challenged very often.
Quite often the business coaches that are working solo don't introduce you to other people or have a network of people to keep challenging It's up to you to choose what's best suited for you, but I really feel that if somebody is part of a bigger group whether it's a franchise group or a collaborative group, you are going to get a better result.
The third point is really quite simple. Make sure you like them. You don't want this person to be someone that you're going to catch up with and just have drinks with, and become a really good friend with because the likelihood is, you are going to start becoming less accountable. The idea of a Business Coach is to hold you more accountable, not let you get away with things. Friends may do that, but your coach will not.
However, there still needs to be that click factor where when you meet with them because it is important that you look forward to meeting with them and enjoy their company. Therefore it’s really important to like them and meet them face to face before you start working with them.
When looking for a coach and meeting with different business coaches to work out who best works for you, it is crucial to find out what their network is like. Make sure they have experts who they know and work with who can also help you along the way to becoming successful. One of the things about business coaching is a lot of business coaches are scared to introduce you to other people because they don't want you to either expose their inabilities or lack of skill in a certain area or they don't want you to leave them to go and work with somebody else.
However, the reality is we can't be good at everything. Everyone has different skill sets which is why it's important when choosing a business coach that you find out whether they have a team of trusted experts that they work with.
When looking for a coach, it’s important to ask whether they have any additional resources. For example, picture a scenario where you are sitting with your business coaching and you brainstorm some strategies for your business. Does the business coach have the tools to give you to make those strategies happen or do you have to start the whole thing from scratch.
An example of a strategy you may have worked on with your coach is a Marketing Plan. Will your coach have something to give you at the end of the session to work on? Or are you going to have to do additional work and research to find a template that works for you.
This is why it’s important to find out what resources your business coach can share with you.
Does your business coach have industry experience?
A lot of business owners ask this question when looking for a business coaching. And I know that may be an important question to some, but, it shouldn’t be a deciding factor. Whilst this may shock some of you, finding a coach that is industry specific or in your niche can feel institutionalised and they start to think like the people in that industry.
Example, if your industry is anything like the smash repair industry your coach might feel like the insurance companies are running the whole industry and that there's no future for them. That is a mindset that may be in the smash repair industry. If you find a coach that has worked in the smash repair industry, they might start thinking that way and that can hinder your growth.
A great benefit when finding a business coach to work with is one that has a community of clients, partners and other business owners that you can tap into and belong to.
Because, as Charlie Tremendous Jones said, "The difference between you now, "and the difference where you'll be in five years "is the people you meet and the books you read."
That is why you want to make sure there is a community that you can tap into, and that way you're not relying solely on your business coach to help you. You will have other clients that your coach is working it to bounce ideas off and share your journey with.
About the Author
Ben Fewtrell is a sought-after Business Coach, Keynote Speaker and trainer who has featured in Virgin’s Inflight Magazine and Entertainment Portal, SKY Business and “Secrets of Top Business Builders Exposed”. He is also the host of the popular Business Brain Food Podcast where he interviews leading experts on anything and everything business.