Last time at YouInc we talked about when to use a business coach. This week we thought we'd round out the topic by telling you how to make the best use of your coach if you do decide to explore that route.
Here are our tips for getting the most bang for your buck:
- Only work with your coach if you truly want to. We have a strict policy that no one can buy our services for a friend or loved one. The only way you can be truly present and move toward your goals is if the impetus comes from you.
- You and your coach should decide together on the work most relevant or pressing for your business. Make sure that you are on the same page about the work you are doing. It's important that you communicate openly and honestly about the broad themes you are working on.
- Commit to the process. You should have a direct conversation with your coach about how long you will agree to work together. This will set some parameters around your process and will keep your work focused. You can always agree to continue working together after the initial period. Once you've committed to a certain period of time, earmark both the time in the schedule and the money, and don't think about either again until the time is up.
- Show up on time and ready to work. Odds are good your coach has meetings before and after you, so show up on time to make sure you get every minute you're paying for.
- Send your updates or specific requests in an email prior to the session. As per the point above, you may not want to spend 10 or 15 minutes updating your coach as to the goings-on since the last session. Some of our clients send us a quick email a day or two before we meet with the salient updates as well as the key things they want to discuss in our upcoming meeting. This helps us prepare for the session and come ready to focus on the issues at hand. A good coach should be keeping you moving towards the agreed-upon work, but there should always be room to talk about things that come up between sessions. (Keep in mind that if a number of things arise that eat your session time you may need longer to reach the initial goals.)
- Do your homework. We often ask our clients to do pieces of homework as they come up in the sessions. A good coach will not ask you to do homework unless it’s relevant and productive to the issue at hand. If you choose not to do it, know that your coach may not be able to help you get the work done in agreed-upon time.
The cost of coaching or advisory services for your business can vary widely, but no matter how much you spend, it's cash coming out of your pocket and you want to make sure that you get your money's worth.