How to choose the best business coach

 (PART 2 of 4)

In our first blog on “How to choose the best business coach” we covered the importance of understanding your own objectives first, in order that you can find a coach with the requisite skill-set to help.

This blog (part 2 of 4) looks at the difference between coaching and other ‘development options’.

Business coaching has many facets

It’s important to recognise that good coaches have the ability to deliver across this full spectrum (to a level), and the weighting should fit the situation.

However, it’s worth noting that some of these areas are decidedly specialist (e.g. personally I would never step into the world of counselling as it is a dangerous area for the unskilled to tread, although I’d be happy to step firmly into training as I’m actually qualified in that area as well as coaching itself!)

The action plans you create, and the mixture of coaching and mentoring, training and accountability are all based on the conversations held before working together formally. The coaching session format and the goals and strategies will be defined by this discussion.

This is the case whether you are micro or massive, or product or service based. It has everything to do with people, and whilst the coaching relationship is paid business to business, the working style is very much person to person.

Forbes provides an interesting insight on the difference between coaching and consulting here

What do you want the coaching relationship to be?

This question is focused upon the expectation you have in mind and why you want a coach in the first place.

If you want…

  • Straightforward education – you want a trainer
  • Guidance from someone who has previously walked the path – you want a mentor / business advisor
  • Someone to discover your inner self and mind, and guide you through the personal barriers – you want a counsellor and or a life coach
  • A plan on a plate and a colour by numbers set of instructions to follow – you want a business consultant / management consultant
  • Help with business growth through education, better decisions and personal discipline – you want a business coach

Why does this matter?

Getting clear on these simple points before speaking with prospective coaches can make a big difference to the success of the relationship all around, and can impact how to grow your business.

Any coach worth their salt should be asking questions of small business owners to confirm their requirements and expectations, however there are those who won’t.

As a simple tip, if the prospective coach isn’t asking you what you are looking for and digging into why you want that, they are probably more into it for them than you.

In my personal view, this discussion is an absolute must before engaging in any working relationship. If my prospects are not clear on it from the outset, we won’t set off on a coaching journey together until they are. It would be destined to fail or be misaligned and is a founding status for a positive working relationship.

When you are getting help in running your own business it’s essential to have a strong and well understood relationship dynamic.

Why is this harder than it should be?

One problem that can often come up is a result of lots of people giving themselves the title of ‘business coach’ because it is in vogue to be one, and they feel it adds to the demand for their actual services.

The reality is that there are actually not that many true business coaches out there; and certainly not as many as there are people carrying business cards purporting to be one.

In our next blog, I’ll be explaining how to identify the real ones and how to question them to make sure!

Next Steps:

If you are struggling to understand your goals or just want to chat through your options, do get in touch with me at UK Growth Coach. I have been helping business owners across Sussex and the South East of the UK for more than a decade as a coach, own two other companies personally, and feel well set to guide you through this difficult decision. You can reach me at tim@growthcoach.co.uk or visit my site for related information at https://growthcoach.co.uk/what-is-business-coaching/

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