Hiring a business coach is a big decision. It is also one of the best decisions you can make for your business. There are a lot of coaches out there these days, so how do you find the right coach for you? Here are 9 things to look for when hiring a coach.
Experience: Your business coach should have extensive and applicable experience in the business world. In order for a coach to be effective, they need to have "lived it". They must have experienced many of the challenges their clients are facing.
Outside Perspective: Your business coach should provide a clear outside perspective of your business. Some prefer to hire a coach that works specifically in their industry. While this can be valuable in certain situations, it is very often the "fresh look" from someone outside of that industry that provides the most value.
Proven Systems: Your business coach must have a proven, consistent system by which they guide you and your business. If your coach "flies by the seat of their pants" and moves around from topic to topic with no organized process, this may be a warning sign. More importantly, your coach and their system must be demonstrated to have produced quantifiable results for their clients.
Aligned with Your Goals: Your coach should be able to be flexible and focus on your goals, needs, and concerns. If you express a desire to focus on a certain area of your business, your coach should respond to and satisfy that request.
No Fear of Numbers: Good coaches measure the results that are achieved with their clients. They want to make sure that their clients are getting a substantial return on their investment in coaching. You should know what kind of return you are getting.
The Accountability Factor: One of the many reasons why coaching is so effective is because of the accountability factor. Your coach should hold you accountable to your commitments. If he/she doesn’t, this is also a warning sign. If you want to move your business forward, you need to be held accountable.
Empathy: As business owners, we all have periods of frustration and need to vent. Your coach should listen and let you vent, but not jump into the "pity party" with you. Once the venting is over, your coach should be guiding you through possible solutions to address the problem.
Enthusiasm: Second only to you (and perhaps your spouse), your coach should show that they care completely about the success of your business. Their outlook should always be positive and solution oriented.
Confidentiality: You must have the utmost trust in your coach, having 100% confidence that everything you discuss in your sessions remains confidential unless you have given permission for it to be released.