Business coaching is one of the fastest growing industries worldwide. But what is business coaching exactly?
How is it different from mentoring, or consulting? And what can a coach do for your business?
This article will give you a proper introduction to business coaching so you can decide if it’s right for you.
We’ll look at what business coaching is, the different styles of coaching, what coaching qualifications really mean, and what sort of results business coaches can produce.
What is Business Coaching?
Business coaching has become a mumbrella term for all kinds of business support including consulting, mentoring and strategizing.
You can find business coaches that specialise in niches like marketing, small business, female coaching, spiritual business coaching or super-specific channels like Pinterest strategy coaching.
But business coaching is simply this:
Assistance provided by someone with more expertise than you to help your business find greater success.
Exactly what that “success” looks like depends on your version of a dream business and lifestyle.
How Do Business Coaches Define Success?
The success you achieve with a business coach will depend on their personal values and ideas about good work.
That’s why it’s important to align with a coach whose work philosophy matches how you want your business to grow.
Not all coaches value (or have mastered) concepts like healthy work-life balance and good pricing strategies.
New coaches in particular can take great pride in being overworked and underpaid.
If you’re not up for grind and struggle, avoid a coach whose personal business model centres on hustle.
Business Coaching Styles
The two styles of business coaching are Accountability and Expertise-driven.
Here’s the difference:
Similar to a life coach or personal therapist, the Accountability Coach acts as a facilitator, asking leading questions to help you discover your own answers.
The Expertise-driven Coach is more like a business consultant or mentor. Their focus is to provide you with direct knowledge and strategic advice.
Most business coaches favour the Accountability approach.
But it’s possible to find Expertise-driven coaches, sometimes branded as Business Consultants, Strategists or Mentors.
Accountability coaches love regular contact, so expect to be meeting weekly or fortnightly to chat about your plans and goals.
It’s a hand-holding approach.
Sort of like a one-on-one business support group.
If you don’t have any discipline or get-up-and-go about you, choose an accountability coach.
You’ll get value from the frequency of the contact and accessibility of the coach between sessions.
Ongoing sessions are usually packaged in 3-12 month blocks.
Expertise-driven coaches have specialist business knowledge and focus on results.
This is a path-clearing approach.
If you’re self-motivated and just need an expert to point you in the right direction, an Expertise-driven coach is for you.
You’ll get enormous value from having access to their business wisdom.
Their insights allow you to gain clarity on exactly what to do in areas such as your pricing strategy, marketing approach, or branding.
Expertise-driven coaching is rarely ongoing. Sessions are either singular (1-3 hours) or project length (3 weeks – 3 months) depending on your business size.
My Preferred Business Coaching Style
The Accountability approach doesn’t fly with me or my clients at all.
Despite my counselling background (or perhaps because of it), I’m not one to sit back and facilitate your thought processes when it comes to business.
I believe that therapy is perfect for personal development. But business challenges require expert advice from a coach who can walk their talk.
Sure, you have your own business wisdom. But you also have blind spots.
And working every day in the same business, you miss opportunities that a sharp business coach can identify and share with you in seconds.
An outside eye can make all the difference to your business.
That doesn’t mean that an Expertise-driven coach will be harsh, cold or abrupt.
This approach is hyper-aware of time wastage, efficiency, and delivering the most powerful tactics to you in no-nonsense, practical strategies you can implement immediately.
15% feelings. 85% get-shit-done.
Results Over Certifications
The most important thing for you to remember is this:
Anyone can call themselves a business coach.
A 6-week course will certify you as a business coach just for showing up online. As if that has any bearing on one’s ability to help a business succeed.
So you’ll excuse me for not rushing off to print a virtual certificate for my wall.
Qualifications are great, when they represent powerful education. But business coaching qualifications don’t represent much in the real world.
Know what does?
Always choose a business coach that has results you’d be happy with. You know, actual proof, genuine testimonials, expert features in reputable publications, and damn good numbers.
Results with businesses your size – who cares what they achieved with a $25K marketing campaign if you’re on a zero-budget mission?
Business coaching is an unregulated industry. With that comes plenty of cash-hungry cowboys.
But there’s more good than bad in business coaching.
The next step for you is to find a coach that matches your values and your business.
Business coaching can have a transformative impact on your business, taking you years ahead of where you’d be on your own.
Now you have the information.
Are you ready to get started?
HI, I'm SARAH
I’m here to help you work smarter, not harder. I teach passionate business owners how to charge premium prices, attract the best customers, save time and make money with ease.