Creating Your Rock-Solid
Coaching Business Plan
Here's the no-holds-barred truth...
Starting and running a successful business - any kind of business -- isn't easy.
It will probably be one of the hardest things you'll ever do, but it will also be one of the most satisfying things you will ever do.
The good news is a coaching business that's based on a solid coaching business plan...
A plan that gives you clarity, focus, and direction...
A plan that's based on clear commitment...
Will take a lot of the sting - or obstacles and difficulties - out of the business-building experience.
Step #1 in creating a coaching business plan is about creating that commitment by finding the truth around why you want to build a successful coaching business in the first place.
This may sound like a simple thing to do but don't be fooled... it's probably the most challenging step of all.
A lot of coaches believe the reason why they do what they do is because they want to serve others and make a difference in people's lives, but if we're really honest with ourselves, that's only half the story.
If all you want to do with your coaching skills is to serve others, you'd do it for free and you wouldn't build a business around it and charge for your services.
Just to be clear...
This is definitely NOT a campaign to get you to coach for free! Charging for your coaching services and building a coaching business are awesome and it's the right thing to do.
How else would you be able to serve others powerfully if you can't make ends meet or are coaching after hours, leaving little to no time to your own wellbeing?
The point of this step is to get you to reflect deeply and dig deeper around your inner motivation for building a coaching business.
When you get to the REAL root of why you want to build a business, why it matters to YOU and not just how you can help others, you'll strengthen your motivation and commitment.
You'll find that with strong commitment, you're able to continue along your journey, no matter what happens...
You're able to tap into a level of persistence and consistency that will allow you to overcome all of the challenges, risks and uncertainty that will come up when you start to build your business.
As you think about your commitment in this first step, don't feel like you need to focus on others and that you must be empathetic to what other people want and need all the time.
As master coach and co-founder of Evercoach, Ajit Nawalkha says...
The following questions will help you connect with the heart of your personal why... the needs and desires within you that don't have anything to do with anyone else.
Commitment is the step that holds all the other pieces in place in your coaching business plan and that's because no matter how awesome your plan is, it's not going to work if you're not deeply committed and focused on building a successful business.
Think of a successful coach you admire. What are some of their awesome personal qualities and traits? What is their business model? What kind of lifestyle do they have? (if you're not sure, Google to get some answers)
Note: When we admire someone, it's usually because we desire some of what they have. This question will help you identify your deepest desires as a coach.
Describe an ideal day in your life as a coach. Start from the moment you wake up until the moment you fall asleep at night. Be as detailed as possible, you can add elements of your lifestyle, where you are, who you are with, be specific about times, etc.
Note: This question will give you hidden clues to what you're looking for in your coaching business and why you want to build your business. Is it a rich, luxurious life with lots of 1st class travel and a house by the beach? Is it plenty of time freedom or maybe it's working with well-known politicians and celebrities? Let yourself dream BIG!
What are 5 to 10 of benefits you personally experience from your work as a coach? Maybe your work allows you to grow and transform as a human being, maybe it's that you get deep satisfaction knowing that you're making a difference in people's lives, maybe it's both.
Note: This question will focus your mind on some of the benefits you gain being a coach. This will help you discover why you want to make this your life's work.
Now that you've completed questions 1 through 3, finish this sentence:
"I want to build a successful coaching business because..."
Note: List as many reasons as you want but try to make sure these reasons are related to you, your passion, your work, your lifestyle, your dreams, and your desires. Don't let yourself focus on other people... you have permission to be selfish!
Here's one of the biggest conundrums of the 21st century...
The internet has linked us to more people than ever before in the history of humanity and at the same time, it's left us feeling lonelier than we've ever been.
Here's the thing...
The internet creates an environment where we can reach people around the world and we can share our lives with them, but it does not nurture TRUE connections.
Deep, honest, vulnerable and powerful connections are the foundation of successful coaching.
So, what has this got to do with creating a coaching business plan?
Well, just about everything!
For one thing, people are hungry for connections. They want a coach who creates space for them to be themselves without fear of being judged or rejected.
More and more people want to feel seen, heard and understood in a real way and not just through mindless likes and shares on social media.
A successful coach is someone who has what it takes to build real connections with people both online and offline.
As you continue to build out your coaching business plan, spend time thinking about how you're going to inspire true connections with potential clients.
Are you going to reach out to them online?
Schedule an old-fashioned "coffee date" so you can get to know each other?
Will you send them an email and follow up with a phone call?
If you're not sure, do a little research and check out what other coaches -- in your niche or area of expertise -- are doing to create connections in your space so you can kick start a stream of ideas and inspiration.
It's time to make some big picture choices on how and when you want to start creating real connections with potential clients.
This is an important segment in your business plan as it will help you make decisions around being visible and marketing your coaching services.
List all the online and offline methods you can think of to reach out and connect with potential clients. Be specific of what places or platforms you would use to find your ideal audience and approach them.
Note: For instance, if you're a health coach, you could aim to attend at least one a health-related industry conference each month. If you like connecting on social media, what are some of the Facebook groups you could become a part of?
How do you show up best when you're connecting with someone new? Do you love connecting online or do you prefer in-person meetups?
Note: When you've answered this question, check back on your list in Question 1 and circle specific methods that work best for you, based on your answers to this question. For instance if your list in question #1 included "attending live networking events", "running a weekend seminar" and "reaching out via DM on Instagram" and you know you're at your best when you connect in person, then you'd circle the first 2 methods but not the third.
What's ONE thing you can do by the end of today, or if you're reading this before bed, what's the one thing you can do in the morning to connect with at least 3 potential clients?
You've identified your preferred channels of connection and maybe you've even already taken your first action step to reach out to potential clients.
This is the segment in the business plan that most coaches absolutely love because they kick a$$ in this area!
We've arrived at the conversation phase of your business plan.
This is where the magic happens.
When you can have a conversation with a potential client, you need to direct your attention to 3 key elements:
How can you make every, single conversation you have feel insightful, meaningful, and transformational for the potential client?
How can you take your language and conversational skills up to the highest levels?
The best coaches in the world also happen to be world-class listeners and conversationalists, and that's not a coincidence!
Coaches are in the business of creating transformations one conversation at a time.
So, keep in mind that with every conversation you have, you are also in the position to create transformation right there in the moment.
This isn't about feeling pressured or stressed into changing lives in minutes although it has been known to happen!
It's actually about looking inside yourself and discovering the internal and external cues, triggers and environmental elements that allow you to show up as a master conversationalist, a master listener...
And a master coach.
At Evercoach, we teach coaches the art of practicing deep listening, asking powerful, perceptive questions that create a space for reflection and game-changing "a-ha" moments for clients.
You can learn more about deep listening and asking questions for life-changing conversations in one of our all-time popular courses on Evercoach - Being an Exponential Coach
Knowing how to have great conversations with clients comes with deep thought, reflection and practice. The following questions will help you create a personal guideline to start meaningful, insightful, transformational conversations that you can include in your business plan.
What's a great opening question you can ask to trigger a deep conversation with a potential client?
Think of some of the game-changing conversations you've had in your own life - either with a coach or even with a friend. What are some of the powerful elements of those conversations, other than insightful, meaningful and transformational?
Note: When you've identified at least 3 elements, think about how you can include them in your next conversation with a potential client.
Identify 3 ways you can learn to take your listening, questioning and conversations skills up to the highest level.