When you are just starting out in anything, it helps to seek out advice from those who have been there before you. Whether it’s having a baby, moving to a new city or starting a business, the experience of others who have already walked that path can be enlightening, encouraging and confidence-building.
For people just beginning their life coaching careers, it is critical to seek out those who have been in the business for a while. Experienced coaches and mentors can give you a dose of reality that you can’t get anywhere else. Plus, they can help you avoid the mistakes that they made, saving you time, money and frustration.
Life coaches who are opting to go out on their own face additional challenges. Starting a business from the ground up is not an easy task. Being an entrepreneur requires a different set of skills than being a coach. But the great news is that you can be successful at both!
Seasoned life coaches who have been in your shoes can offer some great lessons based on their own experiences – successes, failures and everything in between. In this article, we have complied some of the best advice shared by experienced life coaches who have managed to build successful coaching businesses. We hope you can use it as you begin your journey to being a life coach and your own boss!
5 Tips for New Life Coaching Entrepreneurs
Tip 1: Find a mentor.
We’ve already alluded to the fact that it’s vital that you seek out mentors, coaches and anyone else who has ventured on the path to coaching or entrepreneurship before you. With trusted people in your life who can help you through the process, you can significantly reduce your learning curve and get on the fast(er) track to your own success.
Obtain a business coach to help you with marketing, accounting or other aspects of the business where you need additional knowledge. Schedule regular meetings with more experienced coaches or your instructors from your certification program. Be sure to come prepared with your most pressing questions.
Tip 2: Stop planning and start doing.
As a coach, you’ve probably heard the saying that planning is the enemy of action (or some variation of it.) In fact, you will likely tackle this topic with many of your clients since it is a common block for those starting something new.
Sure, you may think you are making progress by spending your time finetuning your website or noodling over names for your services. The reality is that these tasks are taking you away from your work, getting clients and making money. Instead of giving in to the insecurity, fear or whatever feelings are behind the busy work, focus your energy on the coaching from the start.
Tip 3: Your business will change.
As Tip 2 suggests, it is not a good use of time to focus on “surface” projects like logos and business cards in the beginning stages of your business. This is not to say that these items are not important, because they will be vital as you start to really put yourself out there as a coach.
But in the early stages of your business, it’s helpful to know that everything is going to change. And you will want things to change as you learn more about your business! Consider the first few months and years of your business as an experiment to see what works for you and for your clients. Instead of feeling confined to choices you made Week One, you can have the freedom to transition your business, branding and offerings as you learn more about your clients and your interests.
Tip 4: Understand your ideal client.
While this may not be a Day One activity, experienced and successful coaches know the value of understanding your ideal client. When you know who you want to work with and what issues you can help clients overcome, you will be more satisfied in your work and achieve better results. In the beginning, focus on getting clarity around your perfect client. Once you understand who you want to serve, many of the other pieces of your business will fall into place.
Tip 5: Don’t forget to take care of yourself.
As any entrepreneur can tell you, starting a business from scratch takes passion, heart and hustle. There’s no sugar-coating it- it can be downright exhausting! Don’t forget that you can’t give your all to your clients, family, pets and friends if you aren’t taking care of yourself first.
Forget the pressure to have the “perfect” business, and accept that your perfect business might not come until a year or two down the road. That doesn’t mean you won’t be successful during that time, it just means that it doesn’t have to happen overnight. Self-care and creating a good work-life balance can help you feel like a success in all of your endeavors!