If you want to succeed as a coach, you need to tap into a pressing need that executives, managers, entrepreneurs, and other decision makers face.
Often coaches do a very poor job describing that need.
For instance, I recently had a conversation with a coach who is struggling with how to get clients.
He wants to go after executives in a specific industry, which is a good idea. However, when I asked him about the problem he solves for his target market, he replied:
"I know this market well. The executive teams in these companies often don't get along. I can help them communicate better."
To coaches, the above might seem like a great answer. We love helping with communication, emotional intelligence, and developing all of those soft skills.
In fact, my colleague might be describing the exact reason why companies in his market aren't performing as well as they could be.
But his answer won't get him hired, and here is why:
Executives don't wake up in the morning and say, "Gee, I really am not getting along with my colleagues Joe and Mary. My emotional intelligence just isn't what it should be. I better call in a coach."
Even if my coaching colleague is 100% accurate in his assessment, he needs to take one more step.
He must now translate how he sees his prospective clients' problems into the waysthat his clients see and experience these problems.
As we talked more, we came up with some possibilities. In this particular industry, the consequences of dysfunctional teams include:
– Not launching new products rapidly enough to hit growth expectations.
– Costly quality errors.
– Failing to achieve sales targets because teams can't move quickly enough to close deals.
All of the above are costing his prospective clients sales, profits, lower stock valuations and, perhaps most importantly, personal frustration and embarrassment.
Dysfunctional teams may be the root cause of these symptoms, but first we have to get the attention of the decision makers in the market. We need to think the way they do and talk about the problems they are talking about.
With the above pain points in mind, now we can get to work on a marketing message that will start getting interest and attention — and get them to invite us in to talk more.
When you read this, it probably sounds obvious, right? And yet when coaches face this issue for their own practice, they have a hard time. They fall into this trap too often.
At the Center for Executive Coaching, we work personally with you to help you find your niche as a coach, craft your marketing message, and develop solutions with impact. We even give you 27 coaching methodologies to address the most common challenges that leaders, managers, and up-and-coming talent face.
Almost any coach training program can teach you the ICF core competencies, and yes we are accredited as a Level 2 organization (formerly called ACTP) with the International Coach Federation. But that is not enough for you to succeed in the market. Our entire program is designed based on what it takes to succeed in the market, whether as an internal or external coach.
If you are going to get into the coaching field, please do it the right way, with the right tools and methodologies, and the right guidance.
Meanwhile, call me anytime at 941-539-9623if you want to discuss whether our program might be a fit for you.