What entrepreneurs say about coaches; effects of business coaching
In this 4 minute blog, I report the effects of business coaching and how that differs sharply from why entrepreneurs think they need a coach.
The coach question
For me, entrepreneurship is about seeing and exploiting opportunities by creating more value for yourself, but above all for others: your customers.
Entrepreneurship is not about having a business, but about being entrepreneurial. At least being entrepreneurial enough for the type of business in which a small business owner is active.
Maybe your coachee has what it takes to be an entrepreneur, or perhaps not. So, in business coaching that is one of the questions that you need to answer.
Furthermore, you need to find out what he misses out and what his real coaching needs are. Because coachees don’t know what their real problem is, as it turns out.
Differences between before and after coaching sessions
Research among almost 4,000 business owners found that the coaching needs that entrepreneurs have before coaching sessions started differ significantly from the learnings they took home.
In an open-ended question, business owners wrote down what they expect before the coaching began. And, at the end of the coaching sessions, they jotted down what learnings they took home. Their answers were categorized in labels to compare them. It led to the following exciting findings.
A learning curve
Most entrepreneurs are not looking for a business coach, although times are slowly changing for the better. Any business owner can benefit significantly from business coaches.
Business has gotten more complex and is changing more rapidly. There simply is no longer the time to “learn while doing” or the margin of error to “learn by making mistakes.” Business coaches can help to speed up the learning curve effectively; they have seen so many companies from the inside and helped entrepreneurs to overcome their business and personal challenges.
The four major needs and learnings entrepreneurs took home from their business coach
First of all, as a business coach you need to get in contact with troubled business owners. To get in touch easily, the blog Profiling entrepreneurs offers good help in attracting new clients. At the first encounter, the coachee will tell his primary needs, but is that what he truly needs?
The chances are big that ‘Support’ (80% of the entrepreneurs say they look for a business coach to solve their problems) and ‘access to your Network’ (mentioned by 73%) are at the top of their list. That’s okay of course.
But, as it turns out after the coaching sessions ended ‘Support’ is the least mentioned (71%). The more crucial lesson they learned from a business coach is that they have determined how to solve their problems on their own (mentioned by 96%).
The table below states the effects of business coaching. On the left, the needs mentioned before the coaching started and on the right, their learnings after business coaching.
|Needs mentioned before coaching||Learnings after business coaching|
|#1 Need: Support, mentioned by 80%||#1 Learning: Sparring partner and much more than that; learned to solve problems on their own, mentioned by 96%|
|#2 Need: Network by 73%||#2 Learning: Network (learned how networking works by 75%|
|#3 Need: Sparring partner by 70%||#3 Learning: Mirror; insight in own profile & business skills by 73%|
|#4 Need: Mirror by 64%||#4 Learning: Support by 71%|
The first and most crucial learning of coachees is that they learned how to solve their problems on their own. They found out that the business coach was much more than a sparring partner. Someone who motivated them to believe in themselves and in their ability to solve any problem they face.
This learning was reported by 96% of the coachees. This learning was an unexpected outcome. Coachees were expecting someone who would solve their problems; business advice and support (mentioned by 80% of the coachees).
The second learning that entrepreneurial coachees took home is learning how networking works for them. Where they expected to have access to the network of business coaches, what they got, the bigger surprise was that they learned to start networking effectively.
So, how they can build a network of their own that fits their entrepreneur profile.
The third learning that entrepreneurs reported after business coaching is that they have a better and deeper insight into their entrepreneurial profile and what business skills and knowledge they miss out.
Many more entrepreneurs (73%) reported that they appreciated someone to hold up a mirror, where only 64% anticipated this before business coaching started.
The fourth lesson learned by entrepreneurs is that they have received assistance in improving their company performance and business skills. Of course, the need for support is the primary driver for any business owner to start seeking help; mentioned by 80% of the coachees.
Some aspects of their business or performance aren’t going the way they foresaw. Although the coachees seek help and call it ‘Support’, they have no clear idea what a business coach will bring to the table.
To speed up the connection and ‘chemistry’ between a business coach and business owner, E-Scan was introduced. It helped the coach to talk about the person behind the business and its problems and build a sound relationship right from the start.
What can you learn from this?
Every entrepreneur is unique, so is their path to success. Thus, small business owners need to discover what works for them and their business. As a business coach, you can help to speed up this difficult unpredictable process.
Something to keep in mind when you talk to a prospect who is considering business coaching about the extra unexpected added value that you provide.
Do you want to know how E-Scan can work for you in both attracting new clients and adding extra professional value? Request a COACH DEMO.