Though business coaching has expanded in recent years, and companies ranging from multinational corporations to small and medium enterprises have taken advantage of the process, myths and misconceptions still linger. One of the most common is that coaching is nothing more than a backhanded way to tell people what to do. This couldn’t be further from the truth. What I want is to help you help yourself run the business as effectively as possible. This starts with managing expectations – not telling you what to do.
It is important that the coaching role is clearly defined at the beginning of the process. I seek to:
- Lay out expectations: “This is what we are going to do. This is what coaching is. I’m not going to do it for you; I’m going to help you develop the skills and confidence to take on challenges yourself.”
- Distinguish between business coaching and life coaching: Business coaching focuses on…you guessed it, business! My goal is to help you implement your business plan.
- Use the business plan as a basis for determining what exactly the coaching process is going to accomplish: What do you want to achieve? What goals/objectives do you need to meet? Again, this is based on your plan, not on what I want.
- Focus on implementation: When the expectations are clear, it becomes easier to build a reasonable process to achieve goals. How are we going to get from Point A to Point B?
- Identifying areas that need to be addressed or improved and incorporating change into the plan as necessary.
What is coaching? What are we going to cover over the course of the coaching schedule? How often are we going to meet? Monthly? Weekly? What do you need to do in the meantime? It is important that we answer all of these questions at the outset so expectations align and progress, and improvement can begin.
Implementing some of the ideas mentioned here can be challenging. If you would like to discuss them in the context of your own specific business please contact us. We’d be glad to help.