What is Business Coaching?
What is Business Coaching?
Business coaching is a relatively new field, only established during the past 25 years.
The word ‘coaching’ originates from Oxford University from around 1830 as a slang word for a tutor who ‘carried’ a student through an exam, just like a horse drawn coach in those days carried passengers.
After that, ‘coaching’ became a commonly used name and role for sporting teams and athletes from the late 1800’s onwards.
Today, no one could imagine a successful sporting team not having a good coach. In fact, most professional teams now have whole teams of specialist coaches.
There are many parallels between the challenges of sport and business. So it’s not surprising that the field of business coaching has grown rapidly in recent years. Good business coaches often see outstanding results when working with their clients.
But what exactly would I do for you if I became your business coach?
Sometimes it’s easiest to define something by starting with what it’s not…
Business coaching is not accounting.
Business coaches are not in competition with accountants. In fact, on the contrary, we know how important it is to have a good accountant for producing accurate, timely financial statements, giving tax planning advice and a range of other important services.
But accountants tend to focus upon keeping score and reporting upon past events. I still remember the blank look and shrugged shoulders expression of my accountant (soon to be ex-accountant!) in the mid 1990’s when I asked him, ‘What should I do next?’ in relation to our then struggling business.
Business coaching is not consulting.
In whatever field of business you’re in, you can hire a specialist consultant with detailed knowledge of your industry. In short, they can give you technical advice about a specific aspect of your business.
I do a small amount of consulting work too, but only within the one industry in which I have decades of personal, in-depth knowledge. (Ask me if you want to know which one, or visit About Us and you’ll soon work it out…)
Fortunately for business coaches, the principles of business are the same across all industries. Therefore the same imperatives of time, team, marketing, competition, to name a few, apply to all.
Business coaching is not a course of study.
Your needs and situation are unique. Therefore, I will never try to fit you into a ‘cookie cutter’ program where you watch a series of videos or do a set course.
All of my coaching with you will be one-on-one and completely customised to give you the maximum benefit.
Of course this is in no way meant to denigrate education. In fact, detailed studies have shown that, ‘The more you learn, the more you earn.’
I come from a strong academic background and I’m constantly studying and learning to this day. But I don’t believe that you can assume that a $50,000 Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from a prestigious university will give you everything you need to succeed in business, especially if the lecturers have never actually owned and run businesses themselves.
Business coaching is not financial planning or investment advice.
Ultimately it’s your business and you’re the one that benefits or suffers from the decisions that you make. I will never instruct or direct you, certainly not when it comes to financial investments.
I do not have any referral agreements or receive any third party payments from any advisors or consultants.
Why Might I Be A Good Business Coach For You?
Firstly, you’ll notice that I used the word ‘might’ in this headline.
In short, I might not be the right coach for you!
My multi-stage on boarding process is deliberately not rushed so we both have time to get to know each other. After we’ve finished our first free consultation session, unless we’ve both ‘clicked’ and both think that we would enjoy working together, then I’ll help you find someone more suitable.
There’s nothing like knowing that you have a scheduled meeting coming up to help keep you accountable.
For example, I know that I should do stretching and core strength exercises to look after my back. Even though I know there will be bad consequences, I always find excuses to leave my exercise mat at home.
Sign up and pay for twice weekly classes!
Somehow it’s easier when I have a coach to encourage me and keep me accountable.
It will be just the same for you if I become your business coach, especially because it’s always one on one. There’s nowhere to hide!
Business owners are often their own harshest critics.
There’s a good reason that only a small minority of people actually own and run their own business, it’s hard!
Only another business owner can fully understand that challenges that you face.
There are plenty of ‘pep talk’ books and videos you can buy, but my encouragement will not be shallow and insincere.
I genuinely love seeing my clients do well. In fact it’s my key motivator and the single most satisfying thing about being a business coach.
There’s nothing ‘fluffy’ about good business coaching. I’ll introduce you to proven systems, both for the coaching process itself and for all aspects of your business.
I’ve got a wide range of winning systems in my kit bag, but I won’t overwhelm you with ‘information overload’. Through my coaching career I’ve learned that it’s best to achieve a few targeted goals first, rather than take a scattergun approach.
Therefore we’ll focus upon whatever is your ‘low hanging fruit’ first. That is, we’ll introduce the specific systems and solutions to address the greatest weaknesses and your highest areas of priority within your business first.
Every business owner needs to build a team of trusted experts across whatever combination of key professions they need to support their business.
I come to you with a team of contacts and advisors, one of whom works on staff with me. The others I’ve been working with through my own businesses, often for many years.
Linda Brown, who has been my colleague since July 2017, will look after all of your account and administrative enquiries. You can read more about Linda in the About Us section.
Other specialists in my ‘virtual team’ include trusted experts in accounting, legal, conveyancing, real estate, finance broking, insurance, employment and work health & safety compliance, website development, social media, graphic design, videography and offshore virtual assistants.
In every case these relationships are founded upon the professionalism and expertise of the virtual team member. I would never recommend anyone that I have not previously used myself. There are no referral fees or other arrangements in place.
Of course, if you’re already happy with your own support team, then stay with them! You’ll never be under any pressure to change.
You’ve probably heard the old saying that someone, ‘Can’t see the wood for the trees.’
Nowhere is this saying more true than for business owners.
You work long hours and get emotionally involved in your business. Of course that’s totally understandable. Not only is it your passion but often your house, your family and your team’s financial security are all on the line as well.
I will bring a fresh perspective to your business. I’ll bring to your business a new set of eyes and ears that not only have years of experience in running my own business, but experience in helping many other businesses across a wide range of industries.
I will question you on many things that you take for granted or that are entrenched beliefs and habits within your business. If they withstand this scrutiny, great! But it’s amazing how many times you’ll make business breakthroughs by taking a fresh look at the status-quo.
This explains why I don’t need detailed knowledge of your industry to help you as a business coach. To sum up, the principles of business are universal and it often actually helps to be an outsider.
There are many disadvantages with getting older, such as taking that little bit longer each morning to bend down and tie my shoelaces.
But fortunately, there are a few distinct advantages too. For my wife and I, the total joy of being grandparents is certainly hard to beat.
But from a business coaching perspective, I love drawing upon my hard won experience to help you as my client.
Over the past 33 years and counting of owning, running and successfully selling multiple businesses, I’ve faced virtually every business challenge and made every mistake.
Rarely does a coaching session go by where I don’t find myself drawing upon at least one real life experience to help my client.
To me, good business ethics is everything. It takes years to build a reputation but moments to damage it.
Like everyone, I was greatly influenced by my family and upbringing. I was extremely fortunate to have ‘chosen my parents wisely’. I was taught to always think the best of people, to work hard and live true to my beliefs.
In particular, I had a great business mentor in my ‘serial entrepreneur’ grandfather who died all too soon when I was a teenager, but whose example continues to inspire me.
Some people think that you can only ‘get ahead’ in business by taking shortcuts or at the expense of others. I totally disagree with this philosophy.
I believe that good business relationships are built upon trust and that ‘win-win’ is not only the best way, it’s the only way for any sustainable, mutually beneficial long term business relationship.
These deep held beliefs will guide every aspect of my relationship with you, if you allow me the privilege of becoming your business coach.
I’ll conclude this section with some deeply personal confessions that I feel are only reasonable to share if you’re considering taking the significant step of entrusting me as your business coach.
I realise that for many people in the world, the economic imperative of feeding their family requires them to do work that they’re not passionate about.
I’ve lived an extremely blessed life and strongly refute the ‘self made man’ label. Just being born in Australia is like winning a global lottery in terms of freedom, wealth, stability and opportunity. Not to mention the access I’ve had to first class education and, being a white male living from the 1960’s onwards, not suffering from racial, gender or other prejudices.
As a result of these unearned privileges, I’m able to do business only in fields that I’m genuinely passionate about.
To some, that might sound idealistic. But the older I get, the more deeply I appreciate the value of time.
I know how to make more money, but I can’t create a single hour of time. Therefore as I grow older, I’m becoming ever more determined to make the most of every hour.
This is why I invest time into business coaching. I get seriously excited and deeply gratified when I see my business coaching clients achieving their goals.
Helping Business Owners To Succeed is My Passion
I love helping business owners. I can’t help it. It’s just my passion.
This passion is not new. It’s what drove my gradual transition from consumer to trade media in our media business.
It’s what motivated me 25 years ago to start running business training seminars on a voluntary basis.
It’s what drove me to create business training and professional development events and trade awards at our annual trade show. Even though these expensive events lost us thousands of dollars every year I felt compelled to continue because it was my passion to see people succeed in their businesses and receive the recognition they deserved.
This passion to see you succeed will be my deepest motivation if I work with you to help you achieve your goals through your business.