Whether you’re just starting out on your entrepreneurial journey or you’ve been at it a few years and want to improve, a business coach can be an excellent resource. They can provide experience, proven models and a different perspective to help you get clarity and move your business forward. But it’s important to be careful when hiring your business coach. With internet marketing now bigger than ever, a lot of imposters have been able to gain a foothold in this market, making it more difficult to identify the niche experts who can truly help.
The web is now full of coaches making bold claims that they can’t deliver on. They build beautiful websites. They create exciting videos and write addictive sales pages. But when it comes to actually improving the lives of their clients, they fail because they don’t have the industry experience and knowledge to get coach to results on a consistent basis.
So how can you hire the right business coach, and avoid the harmful frauds? I’ve got three tips to help you with your decision.
Know what you’re looking for in a business coach
Looking at different areas of specialization in business, there may actually be a million niches in which business coaches can establish themselves. So before you even start talking to potential coaches to hire, you should know what kind of help you need. If you don’t establish this beforehand, you’re more likely to be sold on a set of services that won’t actually move you or your business forward – ultimately wasting your time and money.
Start by listing out your company’s specific needs. Are you trying to grow and scale a new enterprise? Do your overall marketing efforts need revamping? Do you need help developing a long-term business strategy? Are you trying to onboard a team? Once you know what you’re looking for, you’ll be able to start researching and interviewing the right people.
Verify the business coach’s experience
Now that you’ve ironed out the services you want from a business coach or consultant, it’s time for some background checking. Research your potential coach’s experience carefully. Of course every one you encounter will claim they have all the experience in the world. But don’t just take their word for it.
Look for client testimonials, social media followers, online publications and any other social proof you can find before even meeting with them. As you research their online presence, ask yourself:
- Do they have proof that they’ve been able to consistently deliver on their promises to clients?
- Are their testimonials specific?
- Are their methods tactical or theoretical?
Analyze the business coach’s claims thoroughly, and don’t be afraid to be skeptical. This is your life and your business. Find out what you need to make the best decision for you.
Make sure the business coach can help you
Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential business coaches, you need to make sure they can help your business specifically. Ask them how many people they’ve helped in similar situations. Get specific details on the services and results they provided for past clients. Make sure you sit down with them and iron out the exact metrics you want to hit during your time together. This way, expectations are clear and you’ll have a precise means of measuring your progress.
Then, confirm the number of clients your potential business coach handles at a time. If they claim to deal with 30 or 40 people with similar needs to yours, it’s likely that they’re spread too thin to give your company the attention it needs.
It’s also important to start analyzing the chemistry between you and your business coach during initial conversations. If they tend to be condescending or belittle you in any way, they’re not the right person for the job. Entrepreneurs deal with enough challenges without the added pressure and noise of a negative coach. You need someone who encourages and inspires you to reach your potential.
Following these three tactics will give you a much higher chance of hiring the right business coach for you. But it still doesn’t guarantee the solution you’re looking for. I talk to entrepreneurs every week whose businesses have been damaged by irresponsible coaching, and these stories drive me crazy. As a consultant for more than 20 years, serving startups, entrepreneurs, small businesses and the Fortune 500, I view business as sacred. Nothing frustrates me more than “pretend coaches” – only proficient at self-promotion and internet marketing – who prey on the dreams of unsuspecting entrepreneurs.
If you’re interested in gaining quality training from a reliable source, visit this link to check out one of my training courses designed specifically for entrepreneurs.
And for those of you who are currently looking for the right coach in your specific field, good luck on the hunt!