Three Great Fears Every Business Coach Must Conquer

Three Great Fears Every Business Coach Must Conquer

So you want to be a business coach.

Of course you do! Business coaching is a rewarding, potentially very lucrative field that allows you to earn a great living while making a real difference in the lives of your business coaching clients (and the economy more generally!).

But if you’re like most beginning business coaches, you’re probably grappling with what I call the Three Great Fears—and they’re holding you back from building your practice as effectively and aggressively as you might otherwise do.

What are the Three Great Fears?

Service delivery: will I be able to deliver a valuable service that my clients will gladly pay me for?

Sales: will I be able to clearly articulate the value of my service in a sales meeting and establish the right expectations at the right price?

Lead generation: will I be able to consistently generate a list of people interested in my service, who want to talk to me and learn more about how I can help them?

(Sidenote: if these aren’t your fears, you’re worrying about the wrong things!)

Fortunately, there are simple and systematic ways to address each one. So let’s dive in.

Service Delivery

Having an amazing service offering is everything! Without it, and without absolute confidence in it, you’ll never have the courage to do what it takes to succeed…so you won’t.

Having an amazing service offering is everything! Without it, and without absolute confidence in it, you'll never have the courage to do what it takes to you won't.

With an amazing service offering, it becomes easy to deliver value to clients that they will gladly pay good money for.

As business coaches, we solve three big problems that cause pain for business owners: Time, Team, and Money.

The Coaches’ Coach business coaching system is built around 21 “Silver Bullets” that are divided into each of these categories.

They enable you to help your clients address their most urgent business challenges with effective, proven strategies that work in any business. You introduce the silver bullet to your client, help them implement it, and help them recognize and quantify the impact.

As you do this week after week, you help your clients make incremental but impactful improvements in their businesses—and prove your value as their coach over and over again.


What’s the difference between a business coach who banks just $10,000 per year…versus one who does $10,000 per month?


The single most valuable skill you will learn in business coaching is sitting down with a business owner, clearly articulating your value, and asking for money in a way that makes it a no-brainer for them.

Not coincidentally, this is the area where many coaches experience the most anxiety.

Only two things matter in sales: setting up sales meetings (a.k.a. Complimentary Coaching Sessions) and actually having the sales meetings so that you can convert them into clients at the end.

You can spend a lot of time on a lot of work that makes you feel “busy,” but ask yourself honestly: how much time in the past week have you really spent either setting up, or holding, Complimentary Coaching Sessions? If the answer isn’t, a lot, you’re going to struggle in this business.

Lead Generation

Which, of course, brings us to the third great fear—will I be able to consistently generate a list of people interested in my service, so that I can hold Complimentary Coaching Sessions, and convert those prospects into paying clients?

To be effective, you need to start with a defined target market. I usually suggest that you decide between two options: you can be a local legend (a coach who works with any kind of business owner within your geographical region) or a global guru (a coach who focuses on a single niche and uses primarily digital marketing tactics to build a global client base).

If you haven’t clearly defined your target market, it will be more difficult to attract clients. Be super clear about who you’re talking to. Then, master 2-3 of the following strategies:

  • Referrals
  • Networking
  • Social media
  • Content marketing
  • Direct mail
  • Outsourced telemarketing
  • “Bold walking” (going into local places of business to introduce yourself)
  • Strategic partnerships

Move contacts from strangers to leads to prospects to clients in a systematic way, and you’ll have an ongoing pipeline of new business.

For more fantastic strategies on building your business coaching practice, download our FREE ebook, Secrets of a Business Coaching Rock Star.

The Top 10 Things You Need to Know in Order to Become a Business Coach

The Top 10 Things You Need to Know in Order to Become a Business Coach

Over the years, we’ve talked to hundreds of professionals who are looking to launch business coaching practices. They’ve asked us what it takes to become a business coach and how to do it efficiently and effectively.

Here are our answers to the top 10 questions we get about how to become a business coach:

1) How Do I Start A Business Coaching Business?

To start a business coaching business, your first step is to establish a process for acquiring business coaching clients and coaching them successfully. Many beginners overlook this critical key. In fact, failure to present an effective, step-by-step methodology that helps you quickly and reliably solve business problems for business owners and entrepreneurs will doom your efforts to become a business coach. On the other hand, going to market with a proven method for increasing revenue and profits will make you the go-to person for entrepreneurs in your community or industry niche. There are various options for acquiring a business coach system. You can learn about the pros and cons of each of them HERE.

2) How Much Money Can I Make Offering Business Coaching?

The typical independent business coach will earn $30k to $60k per year or less. But business coaches in our network are NOT typical! Coaches’ Coach is a global network of 6000+ business coaches. We offer a 12-month training process you can go through with a guaranteed outcome of at least $10,000 to $30,000/month in coaching fees. Our process for business coaching client acquisition and retention has been honed and perfected over the last 20+ years and our effectiveness at training business coaches is indisputable. Learn more HERE.

3) What Do You Need To Be A Good Business Coach?

More than anything else, you’ve got to be a great coach in the general sense of the word! All great coaches provide three things: 

1) Awareness. Your first job is to help your clients become aware of the roadblocks and obstacles adversely affecting their businesses. You do this by digging into their businesses to “diagnose” the issues, and then clearly communicating where they’re falling short. After all, recognizing and understanding the problem is the first step to correcting it. 

2) Education. Next, you guide them to the educational resources they need to overcome their challenges. Many business owners lack any kind of real business training – so you teach them these essential skills using tools, knowledge, strategies, and assignments. 

3) Accountability. In order to make sure your clients actually implement what you share with them, you hold them accountable. You provide feedback to make sure they’re doing the work correctly. You stay positive and affirming to ensure they follow through on their objectives. Accountability is one of the most important aspects of coaching, and believe it or not, they’ll thank you for it. Learn more HERE.

4) What Do Business Coaches Do?

Simply put, business coaches are in the business of helping the owners of small-to-medium-sized businesses increase their profits and improve their quality of life. You do this by educating them and guiding them through a process that will increase their revenue and build a team that can run the business for them. Typically, you meet with your coaching clients once a week for 30 to 60 minutes. Most of your coaching sessions are held via Zoom, some in person. Learn more HERE.

Simply put, business coaches are in the business of helping the owners of small-to-medium-sized businesses increase their profits and improve their quality of life.

How Can I Learn the Details of How Your Program Works?

Here’s a 16-minute training VIDEO on how you can generate 10 to 20 high-ticket business coaching clients and bank $10,000 to $30,000 PER MONTH every single month for your expertise in growing businesses and entrepreneurs.

How Do I Get Rid of My Head Trash?

By “head trash” we mean the insecurities and perceived liabilities that you may be allowing to dictate how you feel about yourself and your potential to succeed as a business coach. The solution? A simple but powerful mental reframe that transforms your so-called liabilities into assets in your own mind. Learn more HERE.

What If I Have No System or Curriculum To Use With Business Owners?

Many potential business coaches have hard-won business acumen but aren’t sure how to translate it into training and solutions their clients can easily master. Others worry about whether they can market well enough to close new sales. The solution? Find a system! There are plenty out there, from business coaching franchises to license programs to white-label systems. Shameless plug: we like the way ours stacks up to the competition, but invite you to see for yourself! Learn more HERE.

Will My Business Expertise Translate to Other Industries?

Maybe you have experience in one market vertical and are worried about whether or not your expertise will translate to other industries. A couple of points to consider to put your mind at ease: first, many business coaches find traction faster when they specialize in a particular market niche. So being a specialist isn’t necessarily a liability and can be a huge strength. Second, basic business principles that deal with the core challenges SMBs are facing—namely time, team, and money problems—tend to be universal, regardless of the industry. Your expertise can easily translate into many industries. Learn more HERE.

What If I Don’t Have Enough Money to Start?

When I got started in the business, you realistically needed six figures to launch a successful business coaching practice. We’ve come a long way since then! Now, with the proliferation of digital technology, business coaching is a high-margin, low-cost business model that can be deployed part-time from your home office. So, start-up costs are remarkably low. Learn more HERE.

What If I’m No Good at Marketing and Sales?

I’m not going to sugar-coat it: marketing and sales is at the heart of success in business coaching. However, you don’t have to start from scratch or figure it out for yourself. At the Coaches’ Coach we’ve spent the last 15+ years developing and refining proven, predictable, effective marketing and sales strategies that you can take and deploy in your chosen market. It’s not a cakewalk. You have to actually implement the strategies consistently and methodically. But it’s not as intimidating as you might think! You can do it! Learn more HERE.

How to Get Referrals for Rock Star Associate Coaches from Your Existing Network

How to Get Referrals for Rock Star Associate Coaches from Your Existing Network

The best and most effective way to turn your business coaching practice into a legitimate enterprise that can run with or without you is to recruit associate coaches into your firm.

A business coaching firm is no different from a law or accounting firm, in that you’re creating an organization in which accomplished professionals provide important services to business owners, entrepreneurs, and executives.

But a firm is only as good as its talent.

And if you want to grow your firm to success, you have to recruit top-tier talent.

The challenge is that some of the best potential associate coaches out there aren’t already business coaches! They’re professionals and entrepreneurs engaged in other projects. They might not know enough about the business coaching industry to have considered it, even if they were born to do it.

So if you want to recruit and retain this kind of top-tier talent, you have to be creative in how you find them.

That’s where this process comes in.

When I built my business coaching firm, one of the most productive sources of leads for associate coaches leads was referrals from my personal network. In fact, six of my seven associate coaches came from my existing network of contacts.

Here’s a system you can use to generate leads from your existing network of relationships for promising associate coaches.

The challenge is that some of the best potential associate coaches out there aren't already business coaches! They're professionals and entrepreneurs engaged in other projects. They might not know enough about the business coaching industry to have considered it, even if they were born to do it.

Create a Profile for Your Ideal Coach

Your first step is to think about what kind of person you’d like to attract as an associate coach. Note that this is NOT the same as a “job description,” because the types of people you’re going to recruit may well not be looking for a new “job!”

Instead, this is about identifying the characteristics and experience of a person who will thrive as a business coach.

(Not sure what you should look for? Check out our FREE ebook, Do You Have What It Takes to Be a Business Coach? for the personality profile of top-performing coaches.)

Create a document on your firm’s letterhead outlining the top three to five characteristics you’re looking for in an associate coach.

Reach Out to Your Contacts

Then, make a list of up to twenty people who know, like, and trust you enough to answer “YES” to this question: “I am growing my business coaching firm by adding an associate coach and I need your help. Could you either meet me for lunch on Wednesday or give me a time when we can talk on the phone about how you can help me?”

Remember, people don’t like to refer but they do like to help. Therefore, ask for help!

Then, begin to reach out.

Once you have received an affirmative response, thank them and send them an email with your profile description. Ask them to review the document and begin thinking about it.

Brainstorm with Your Contact

When you meet, bring two copies of the profile description (don’t count on them to remember the one you sent) and a legal pad. Exchange pleasantries and thank them again for helping you. Then dive into the process immediately.

Since they know you’re asking for associate coach leads, they might have a couple of names for you—don’t take them! Your simple response is, “Thanks for that, but I wanted to simply brainstorm a bit. If you want to include those names when we are done, that’s great, but I want to explain the opportunity with you.”

You MUST emphasize that this is a brainstorming session—not simply a request for leads. Be sure they understand that you will not contact anyone from the brainstorming list unless they expressly give you permission. One particularly effective way to do this is to let them use first names only.

Begin by going through the profile description. Read each characteristic from the page, and ask, “Who do you know who…?”

Stop.  Hold your pen over the legal pad. Wait.

Jot down names as they recall people who fit that characteristic.

Move to the next question. Repeat this step for every point. Make a goal to get five names for each characteristic (remembering, of course, that some names will overlap). If they’re having trouble coming up with new people, it can help to provide gentle reminders, such as, “Can you think of anyone in the Rotary/Country Club/Chamber?”

Eliminate Names

If you do this effectively, you will now have a list of names—perhaps as many as 15-20!

Then, turn the list around to them. Tell them that you certainly don’t expect them to contact all of those people! Therefore, from a referral standpoint, ask them to list their top ten.

(What if there are fewer than ten names? Cut the list down by about half.  For example, if they have eight names, ask them for the top five.)

This process makes them comfortable because they are eliminating those that they would be uncomfortable to refer.

Now you have a referral list—but it doesn’t stop here. In fact, the fun now starts!

Starting with the last name on the list, ask “What’s wrong with John? Why is he #10 instead of #1?”

Whatever they say—for example, “I haven’t talked to him for a couple of years”—you say, “That’s OK, we’ll get rid of him.”  Make a bold slashing line through his name. GONE.

Do the same thing with #9… and so on…

…until they say, “STOP – the rest are good!”

This does two things: It literally makes them an advocate of the remainder names. Why? Because they have spent all that time brainstorming, and now you’re getting rid of their work!

And also, they came to help you; therefore, they want you to end up with some names!

Ask the Contact to Reach Out to Whoever Remains

Once you’ve narrowed the list down only to those they feel passionate about, ask them how they would like to introduce you to the referral. Give them three options: face to face, letter, or phone call.

They will pick the easiest (phone call), and that’s good—because that’s what you want!

Send them with the copy of your profile description so they can have some information for their call. Do a bit of coaching here. Tell them that the goal of their call is permission for you to reach out and subsequently meet with the referral. Get their agreement.

Follow Up with Your Warm Leads

Set a date to follow up with your contact in three or four days. Tell them you will simply be calling to gather the names of the referrals that gave you permission to call.  

Call them at the pre-arranged time and gather the details. For those that they have not yet contacted, encourage them and set another date to follow up.

At any point, they are free to not follow through. Tell them this. It eases the tension as well as challenges them (use the phrase, “It’s OK if you don’t follow through”—because everyone wants to be good at “follow through”).

Once you have the names of leads who have given you permission to call, reach out immediately with the referrer’s name on your lips, and take it from there!

This is a fantastic way to get introduced to potential rock star associate coaches that might not even know that coming to work for your firm is the next best step in their career!

For a done-for-you profile of the perfect associate coach, and more great tools and techniques like this, get a FREE 30-day trial of our entire business coaching system today.

Is Brand Recognition for a Business Coaching Franchise Valuable?

Is Brand Recognition for a Business Coaching Franchise Valuable?

Often, when you’re considering a business coaching franchise, the franchisor will tell you that their “brand recognition,” in and of itself, is a valuable asset that will bring you business. But is brand recognition for a business coaching franchise really valuable?

Usually not.

True national brand recognition is generally only achieved by massive corporations, the result of billions of dollars being spent constantly on print, broadcast, and internet advertising. (Think McDonald’s or Dunkin’ Donuts). Even the largest business coaching franchisors in the world simply don’t have the kind of cash and traction necessary to make themselves a household name.

This means that the “brand” you’re buying probably isn’t worth as much as they claim. In most cases, the money you would have spent on a brand-name that nobody recognizes would be much better invested in building your OWN brand, one that you can control and make a powerful force in your local market or niche–where it matters most.

In most cases, the money you would have spent on a brand-name that nobody recognizes would be much better invested in building your OWN brand, one that you can control and make a powerful force in your local market or niche--where it matters most. 

How to Check Claims of Brand Recognition for a Business Coaching Franchise

First, look critically at the level of brand recognition the franchisor can legitimately claim.  Make a list of the brands you know off the top of your head.  Are ANY of them professional services companies, such as business coaching firms?  If so, what size are these businesses?  If you’re like 99% of the people who complete this exercise, you’ll realize fairly quickly that national brand recognition is usually NOT achieved by smaller organizations like business coaching franchises.

Then call five of the most influential accounting firms in your region and ask them if they’ve ever heard of the franchise system you’re considering buying. If they have, ask them about the reputation of the system. If they’ve never heard of them before, then most likely their clients (your prospects!) haven’t heard of the franchise either – guaranteed! If they HAVE heard of the franchise you’re exploring, what’s their reputation like? Will it help you or harm you?

For more inside tips on doing due diligence on business coaching franchises, check out our FREE ebook, The Business Coaching Franchise Buyer’s Guide.

What’s a Business Coaching Franchise Agreement?

What’s a Business Coaching Franchise Agreement?

A business coaching franchise agreement is THE controlling document of your relationship to the Franchisor and represents the culmination of what has undoubtedly been a lengthy sales cycle. This document tells you exactly what the franchisor is providing you in exchange for your money. It explicitly lists payment terms and penalties for missing those terms.

No matter what you do, take your time to read it thoroughly.

That sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many business coaches don’t. Make notes about areas of concern. Consult with an attorney who can help you learn to what extent the agreement protects your interests.

A Franchise Attorney Is Your Best Protection

Make sure that you use a reputable, experienced franchise attorney when reviewing your business coaching franchise agreement. The law is a vast and complex subject, and while your family/business attorney is probably a great person and good for general legal issues, they don’t fit here. Franchise law is very specific and complex so a decent Franchise Attorney will save you time, money, and headaches. You wouldn’t ask your podiatrist to do your brain surgery; likewise, don’t ask a generalist attorney to review your franchise due diligence documents.

Generalist attorneys are notorious for being ignorant of standard franchise boilerplate content, thus making issues out of non-issues and missing key elements that cost you big-time down the road. These due diligence disasters are all due to their lack of familiarity with franchise law. I’ve witnessed people in the franchise due-diligence process spend $5,000 – $8,000 with an unqualified attorney on what could have and should have cost no more than $1,800, had they worked with a qualified franchise attorney.

You wouldn’t ask your podiatrist to do your brain surgery; likewise, don’t ask a generalist attorney to review your franchise due diligence documents.

Measure Twice and Cut Once

Understand that most franchise agreements are “boilerplate,” which means that the standard agreement itself cannot and most likely will not be changed. Don’t waste your time trying to get the agreement itself changed. If the Franchisor changed the base documents it would immediately require them to readdress everyone operating under that current agreement… the legal costs, state registration costs, and notification costs are infinitely more than the value of a single franchise sale.

However, you can insist that amendments or addendums be added to the end of the agreement. This happens frequently, so don’t be shy about it. If there are concessions, you MUST get them in writing. I am not necessarily implying that every franchisor will intentionally mislead you, but in general, franchisors are brilliant at knowing how to use the legal system to their advantage. They generally have no compelling reason to advantage you in any way in their agreements.

Given the chance, many franchisors will push as much of the risk on the franchisee (that’s you) as possible while mitigating their own. This can show up in the form of explicit performance requirements for franchisees while, as a contrast, applying a general, non-specific, or outright ambiguous performance requirement on the part of the franchisor. You have a responsibility to yourself, your family, and your financial future to be just as savvy and vigilant as they are. So be prepared to measure twice and cut once.