What It Takes To Be A Great Health Coach
A great health coach transforms lives every day.
When clients feel fit and healthy, when they feel good inside themselves, they have access to the energy, mental capacity and emotional strength they need to make changes in other important areas of their life such as in their relationships and at work.
A great health coach loves seeing clients live out their dreams in active, joyful, adventurous ways - from traveling the world to spending hours playing with their kids in the backyard without feeling exhausted.
Nothing makes them happier than seeing people thrive as they experience daily life with high levels of energy, enthusiasm, and excitement.
Top health coaches are a kind, caring, and generous bunch. They're about helping people live their best life. Above all, health coaches are passionate and dedicated to creating results for clients.
Great health coaching requires deep work with clients and, if your heart isn't in it, you'll lack the focus and discipline it takes to create a lucrative career or build a successful business that lasts.
One of the biggest benefits of being a health coach is the positive impact you can create in the world and, if this isn't something that's close to the top of your priority list, the work can feel tedious and challenging.
The best health coaches in the world genuinely enjoy what they do and they are happy to continue learning and growing as a coach.
They are masters at foundational coaching skills such active listening, crafting insightful questions, empathizing, and giving powerful, helpful feedback to facilitate change.
But they don't stop there.
World-class health coaches build on basic coaching skills with deep knowledge around other health-related categories. They're pretty much obsessed about keeping up with current information in diet, nutrition, exercise, and habit and behavior change.
They're excited to learn new and improved ways to hone their coaching skills and they're never too busy to explore innovative avenues and branches of health coaching so they can continue to serve their clients at the highest level.
And it's not only about taking online trainings on diverse topics, but working with their own coach or mentor, enrolling in health coaching certifications, participating of events or masterminds, and so on. They know how crucial it is to stay up-to-date with new research, trends, skills, and be able to adapt their coaching methodology to the changing world.
One of the prevailing principles that power health coaching and coaching in general is this:
You can only take your clients as far as you are willing to go.
And so the world's top health coaches are dedicated to coaching by example... in other words they "practice what they preach." They apply and implement the strategies and ideas they ask their clients to work with and they motivate by serving as a lifestyle model for their clients.
Time to reflect on your skills and character traits, and how you can use what you already have as you start your journey.
These questions are designed to help you identify your strengths and also the areas you need to focus on. Don't worry if your answers are not quite what you want them to be.
Remember... you can't get to where you want to go if you don't know where you are now.
This exercise will give you a clear starting point so you can quickly move toward your goals as a health coach.
Read the following questions and then rate yourself on a scale of 1 to 5.
- How would you rate your active listening skills? Do you go through the motions or do you truly hear what others say and tune into how they feel?
- How passionate are you about health and wellness?
- How in tune are you with your intuition? Would you consider yourself an intuitive person and coach?
- How committed are you to leading a healthy life?
- Are you ready to do what it takes - consistently and continuously learn and evolve as a health coach - so you can serve your clients at the highest level?
How What Much Should You
Charge As A Health Coach?
Passion is critical. Purpose is key...
But when it comes to becoming a successful health coach -- someone who can navigate unexpected changes and shifts in the industry -- you need to nail the 3rd "P"...
Unfortunately, way too many new coaches get this wrong... very wrong.
When it comes to pricing, charges, payment and finances in general most health coaches either:
1. Think about it too much
2. Don't think about it enough
Googling "how much should a health coach charge" won't help you much either.
You'll see hundreds -- thousands -- of articles and posts that go deep into a whole bunch of topics like "the psychology of pricing" or "the industry average" or how you must "research what your competition is charging."
Here's the thing?
The psychology of pricing is something that can take months -- even years -- to understand in a way that will be useful to you as a coach. Most of the time you have no idea what your competition charges (most health coaches do not state their prices on their website for all the world to see) and the industry average could be out of date.
So, how do you solve the pricing puzzle?
Before you start to think about prices, first think about how you want to work with your clients.
PART 1: PACKAGES
Do you feel comfortable offering your services on a per-session basis? This means your clients can choose to sign up for a next session every single time. A one-time session package can be very flexible for the client, but it won't be sustainable for the long run or create the results you want to create.
If you want to build a sustainable practice and create long-term results, you might prefer going with a series of sessions where you'll have clients sign up for coaching packages with 3, 6, 9, 12 or more sessions per package.
Current marketing wisdom states that it's good to go with the package model as it gets you out of the hourly or per session loop.
It creates a longer-term commitment that takes financial pressure off you and creates accountability for your client.
Think about it...
With a per session model, your client has to come up with whatever you're charging per session, whether that's 45 minutes, an hour or 90 minutes. But if you go with a package model, the client now needs to invest a whole lot more than a single session... and this is a good thing.
Most people achieve higher levels of motivation and discipline when they have more money on the line. They've got skin in the game and that's exactly what you want from your clients if you're looking to help them create results.
Offering packages also gives you more time to make a real difference with each client because you'll have the opportunity to work with them, long-term. You get to dig deep and identify the root cause of their health issues or challenges as you guide them through a full transformation.
PART 2: PRICING
So, you might be thinking...
All that's great, but what in the world should I charge? What's the hourly rate? How much should I ask for a group program? What should my package rates be?
You're not going to like this answer but it's the truth...
It all depends and there are a number of factors at play.
EXAMPLE: 1:1 COACHING
Experienced coaches -- basically those who have a great reputation plus a few years of coaching experience under their belt -- can charge $200 or more per 60-minute session while brand new coaches usually start lower - around the $70 to $100 mark, per session.
For most coaches, these rates cover working with the client 2 times a month for 3 months or more. On the lower end of the scale, this works out to about $400 a month per client for experienced coaches and about $140 per client for new coaches.
In general, top health coaches who can show results -- those who have worked with clients and have testimonials to prove their expertise -- can easily bring in well over $100k per year.
Those who primarily run their business online hit this mark by offering a range of products and programs -- their clients can choose to work with them in a 1:1 setting at a higher price, at in person workshops, group programs and self-paced online courses.
EXAMPLE: CORPORATE COACHING
In recent years, expert health coaches are also being invited to work on a part-time or even full-time basis at larger corporations looking to help their employees achieve good health and higher productivity levels.
Corporate health coaches are paid a wide range of salaries -- anywhere from $40k per year to $60k or more -- depending on the corporation that employs them as well as their own experience and area of expertise in health and wellness.
Most coaches also offer a free preliminary or "discovery session" where the coach and potential client connect - online or in person - to check in and see if they'd be a good fit working together.
The free discovery session, which typically lasts anywhere from 20 minutes to 60 minutes, allows the coach to evaluate a potential client's motivation and get an idea of the current challenges and obstacles in getting to their health goals. It's a great starting point also to see if the client is willing to do the work, if you can create the results they're looking for, and if you feel excited to work with that client.
The rates included in this chapter are here to give you an overview -- they're not carved in stone.
Pricing is never a one and done deal.
It's about going out there, offering your services and talking about your rates in a sales conversation, plus being willing to experiment, shift and change your prices based on feedback from your clients, market expectations and other factors.
It's never about charging the highest price you can get from clients, it's about knowing you can deliver in your role as a health coach.
Ultimately, the right price is the one that makes you feel satisfied because you know you're helping clients achieve the results they want.
It's about deeply understanding your clients and their needs as well as the value you can bring to their lives as you continue to grow, evolve, and improve as a coach.
While there are no hard and fast rules on pricing, getting clear on how you want to offer your services and who you want to work with, will give you a better idea on how to price your services and programs.
These questions will help you find clarity:
Question 1. Who do you want to serve? Keep in mind that millennials making ends meet at their first job are unlikely to have as much to invest in a health coach as CEOs looking to up their game.
Question 2. What can you do to consistently and continuously improve your skills as a health coach? Remember the more skilled you are, the more in demand you are, the more you can charge because you know you can deliver in your role as a kicka$$ health coach!
Question 3. How do you want to work with your clients? How do you want to design your packages? 2 calls per month for 6 months? 3 calls a month for 3 months?
Don't forget that the package model is a much better option than the per-session model so create health coaching packages that suit your personality and help you bring in more than enough income to keep the lights on.
Question 4. How much would you like to earn per month and per year, and how many clients do you want to work with each month? Use your answers to reverse engineer pricing your sessions and packages. It doesn't make sense to aim for $500 a month working with 2 clients a month when your yearly goal is $50k (at $500 per month and 2 clients, you're making $1000 per month and $12,000 per year)