A successful business coach needs a lot of different skills. You need to know far more than just how to run a good business. And ultimately, the more skills you have, the more successful you’ll be.

Whether you’re new to business coaching or you’re looking for new ideas to increase your success, here are our top 8 skills that we know every business coach needs.

1. Know Yourself

As with most things in life, hiring a Business Coach is an extremely personal choice. This means your prospective clients not only need to understand what you offer as a business, but also they need to understand you as a person. The best way to communicate this is for you to establish your Unique Selling Points (USPs). If you were to complete a Venn diagram with 3 sections: 1. Skill Set, Experience & Interests, 2. Values & Personality, and 3. Process, the intersection reveals your USPs. By understanding these you can then determine who you can best serve with them. There is no right or wrong, or one size fits all, ant that’s the beauty of it. It is bespoke to you and the clients you serve. Decide on your position in the market, and then make sure you communicate it well.

2. Build Relationships

Business is all about relationships, so if you want to find success, you need to go out there and build those relationships. Your clients are highly unlikely to do a random Google search and phone you up out of the blue to say they want to work with you. They will want to know who you are and who else you’ve worked with. They’ll follow recommendations and referrals, and they’ll want to work with someone they have a rapport with. The more relationships you can build, the more success you’ll have. A good way to do this is to get out there networking.

3. Know Your Clients

Being able to talk to your clients effectively is a must. That means you need to understand them and their pain points. You also need to be able to track the impact that you have on your clients so you can share case studies and stories with prospects and demonstrate the results you could offer. Don’t treat people too generically. The more you can talk to your clients on their level, the better they’ll respond to you.

4. Be Business Led

This is one of the skills that sets apart the best business coaches from the average ones. It is the ability to think about your clients’ businesses over them as business owners. You have to give them what they need not necessarily what they’re asking for. If your client wants to take their business to the next level, then they wouldn’t have hired you if they already knew how to do it. So don’t let them guide your sessions. The more you can ask those questions, set the agenda and find out the real issues that need tackling, the better the results will be. And the longer your clients will work with you.

5. Be Quick & Decisive

At any one time in a business, there could be numerous things that need reviewing or issues that need tackling. You need to be able to find out quickly what they are and then easily set up action plans to be able to work through these tasks. The sooner you can pinpoint where your clients need help and take the decisive action, the more effective all of your client sessions will be. This was the whole thinking behind hubbix in the first place.

6. Compassion

A lot of business coaching is actually just being there for the business owner. The business owner can often be putting on a mask to their team, their employees, their customers, and even their family, saying everything’s fine, when it could all be falling apart. You’re sometimes the only person they can be honest with. Being able to listen and support are vital skill sets for any business coach.

7. Proactive Learning

A lot of people love to gain knowledge. They read, listen to podcasts, go to talks etc. But too often people are actively going through the motions rather than proactively learning. It’s one thing to know about things, it’s another to adopt new skills into your day to day activity. Learning can sometimes be the ultimate procrastination. You can tell yourself you’re doing loads of professional development and that’s great. But if it all just stays in your head and none of it improves how you operate as a professional, then it’s completely meaningless. Stop deciding what you want to learn, and instead decide where you want to improve and take it from there.

8. Boundaries

The final skill set is setting those boundaries. As you build a relationship with a client, it can be so easy to go the extra mile for them. But if you’re not careful, this can very soon get out of hand. That extra half an hour you’re giving to them is actually half an hour of revenue you’re losing. It’s lovely that you want to offer that extra support, but you must remember you’re running a business. As soon as you start to give away free time, it becomes incredibly difficult to ask for more money later. Your clients will snap up all the extra support they can get, but they will then be far less willing to pay for it down the line as they won’t value it in the same way anymore.

Of course, if we were going to add in top tip number 9, it would be to use hubbix. This tool can help support your client sessions so you can focus more on the listening and supporting and less on the admin. Find out more about how hubbix could help you.