Coaches are in the dreams-come-true business. Their job is to guide and motivate people to create their dream reality – whatever that may be.
I can’t think of anything more fulfilling than helping people achieve their highest potential and their biggest goals. That’s the reason why I became a coach.
But it’s not all sunshine and rainbows in the world of coaching.
There are challenges, obstacles, and painful realizations that I wish I’d known from the beginning. This would not have made a difference in my choice to be a coach – I love what I do – but it would have been a less bumpy ride.
Here are 3 cold, hard truths about coaching every coach should know from the start.
Hard Truth #1: You’ll Fail. Regularly.
I was a newbie coach when I experienced my first massive failure.
I was set on selling my first long-term coaching package. I’d spent weeks and weeks – hundreds of hours in total – fine-tuning it and reworking every single piece.
It happened that, during this time, I was scheduled to give one of my first stage presentations as a coach. It was for a 2-day retreat.
I’d spent over 40 hours in 1-on-1 coaching sessions with event participants throughout that weekend. My speech was one of the last ones on the agenda and I thought I’d share my coaching package at the end of my presentation, onstage.
I was pretty sure I’d have at least 30 people sign up – they’d all expressed interest when I mentioned it to them during the 1-on-1s.
But when I finally shared my offer just 4 people enrolled. Looking back, this is a pretty okay number for a brand new coach, but at that time it felt like a total failure.
I was crushed.
But here’s the thing…
Experiencing that failure – and the ones that came after – helped me gain insights on what worked and what didn’t …
Both as a coach and as an entrepreneur.
These failures were pivotal in helping me grow a successful and sustainable coaching business. They also helped me become the coach I am today.
Now I’ve learned to enjoy the hits and be cool with the misses.
Failures are part of the long game.
And learning to stay resilient when you fall flat is the key to becoming a rockstar coach with a fulfilling, highly profitable business.
Hard Truth #2: Your Work Won’t “Speak” For You
Many talented coaches believe the work they do and the results they get for clients are more than enough to create consistent success.
I wish this was true but it’s not.
The coaching industry is a crowded space. This isn’t a bad thing but it means you need to step up and market yourself.
Share testimonials from happy clients on your social media pages, on your website, and anywhere else you can think of.
Ask for referrals from past clients. Put yourself out there and share your message on social media platforms.
Anything to keep you at the top of potential clients’ minds and in their hearts.
Stepping out and speaking up about yourself and your services will give you the traction you need to create a full schedule of clients.
Staying silent will do the opposite.
So, make a commitment to speak up about yourself…
Because your work won’t speak for you.
Hard Truth #3: You’ll Enjoy a Lot of Freedom
Coaching is an excellent “lifestyle” business.
You can travel the world and hold sessions with your clients online. You can decide not to work on a weekday afternoon and watch a movie instead.
There’s a lot of freedom when you run your own business, but there’s also a hard limit to that freedom.
Being a coach with your coaching business is not just about doing what you want, how you want, and when you want.
It involves a lot of hard work. It involves a lot of sacrifice. It involves spending hundreds – and eventually thousands – of hours coaching.
The truth is entrepreneurs and business owners work more than most office employees.
Here’s a quote by extremely successful entrepreneur and TV personality Laurie Greiner…
“Entrepreneurs are the only people who will work 80 hours a week to avoid working 40 hours a week.”
I couldn’t have said it better.
Being a coach is one of the most rewarding experiences, but it can also be painful when you don’t acknowledge and accept the hard truths about the work you do.
It’s not enough to have an open heart and mind to be a great coach.
You need to have your eyes open too.
When you do, you’ll know how to move past the challenges without missing a beat and become a truly successful, impactful coach who changes lives everyday.
And there’s nothing more awesome than that.