Lisa Wight, the Founder of hubbix, shares her top tips for what not to do and what to avoid when starting out as a business coach.

  1. Don’t work with people that you don’t want to work with
    It’s a common pitfall for many new business owners that they end up doing work they don’t want to do, but you simply don’t have to. It is not worth building up your coaching business to serve people that you do not like to serve. It won’t make you happy, and you won’t do your best work. So don’t be afraid to be choosy.
  3. Don’t spread yourself too thin
    It’s too easy to try to do everything when you start. If you try to juggle too many things, such as having Instagram and YouTube and LinkedIn and Facebook, and you’re going networking, and you’re trying to launch it all at the start of your business coaching journey, it’s too much. It’s overwhelming. And, what’s more, it’s not going to be right because you haven’t had a chance to test your message. Focus on networking to begin with, and when you’ve figured out your messaging, then look at your content strategy online.
  5. Don’t guarantee results for clients
    It can be tempting to say that working with you will guarantee success, but in reality any results depend on so many different variables, most of which have nothing to do with you. For example, is the business owner actually putting in the work that’s required? What if there are market changes? If you guarantee certain results, you’re just setting yourself up for failure.
  7. Don’t bad mouth other business coaches
    There is never a good reason to bad mouth anyone else. If you’re feeling the need to bad mouth another coach, then ultimately that means your offering isn’t very good. Your offering should speak for itself. What you do should look amazing, no matter what everyone else is doing. If you need to spot a mistake someone else has made for the good of your client, you can do this objectively, but never make it personal and never get emotional about it. You’ll look unprofessional.
  9. Don’t get into an exclusivity arrangement with a client unless you are heavily compensated for it
    You might get asked by a client if you can work exclusively for them and no one else in their industry. They will want to lock you down. However, if you have other opportunities from people in that industry, how much could you lose by having an exclusive agreement? What are the benefits to you? Make sure it’s worth your while if you are going to do this.
  11. Don’t be disingenuous
    If you are advising a client that they need a cash flow forecast or they need to automate their processes, first consider whether you have these things set up in your own business. It can be very irritating when someone is advising you to do something that they do not do themselves. So just be mindful of that and don’t be disingenuous with advice to clients.
  13. Don’t say yes to every opportunity
    When you start out, it can be tempting to take on any work that comes your way. But if you are constantly saying yes to every opportunity that comes along, you run the risk of diluting your niche, and that is where your real value lies. Client referrals are powerful, but clients need to understand what you stand for in order for that to be successful. Make sure you stick to your niche and you choose your client base carefully.
  15. Don’t ignore the emotional side of business coaching
    When it comes to business coaching, there is a strategic side and there is an emotional side, and to be the best you can be you need to deliver both. Too much one way or the other and there will be a gap, leaving the client missing out. Sometimes you might need to be a sounding board or you’ll need to kick your client up the bum to encourage more accountability. Other times you’ll need to focus on the strategy to help them identify what needs to be done in the business. A blended approach will allow you to fully support the client.
  17. Don’t leave a meeting with a client without having the next meeting booked in
    Whether it’s an online meeting or an in person meeting, do not leave without having the next session booked in. If, for whatever reason, they can’t book the next session, then have a plan of action of when you are going to get it booked. Actually put a follow up in your own diary to ensure it happens. If you leave it to the client to come back to you, you will lose momentum, and you may lose the client. You need to be proactive to stay on track.

If you found this blog useful, please also check out our top tips on what you must do to be a successful new business coach.

Next Steps
Whatever sort of coach you want to be, you need to figure out what you’re offering, who your clients are, what your pricing is, and then you need a structure for taking them through a process during your client sessions. It just so happens that hubbix can help you with that. How structured are your meetings? Do your clients leave with action plans? Find out more about how hubbix could streamline your client sessions.