Minimize Your Business Risk by Using  A Business Coach

Business risk comes in many forms, but business owners rarely see the risks they are facing when their business is profitable and growing.  Ironically, there is as much risk in business success as in failure.  We call it outrunning your headlights, which in a business means that your ability to sell new business and your ability to produce and deliver your product or service is out of balance .  This is a hazard that presents itself most often to small businesses where the ability to scale production is missing.  This is just one of the ways that your business can be blind-sided.

As a business owner you have to make a lot of decisions, and a key step you can take to reduce your risk is to use using advisors with the skills and perspective that you may not have.  This typically includes AT LEAST the following: an accountant as a financial advisor, an attorney as a legal advisor, a business coach with skill in strategic planning and marketing, and a human resources expert if you plan to have employees.  This can be an informal network of friends or associates, professionals that you hire, or a formal advisory board.  A good place to start is to get a business coach.  Business coaches are typically a generalists who can help you define your business strategy, identify those aspects of your business that are most critical to success, and can assess how your skills and abilities fit into your business demands.

Business coaches have been proven to provide value to both owners of small companies and executives at large companies.  The CEO of Google, Larry Page, uses and recommends that business leaders use, business coaches to help them grow their businesses.   If coaches provide so much value to top executives, why don’t all business owners and managers use coaches?  It can be because there is a hesitancy to admit individual limits or weaknesses, there is a general lack of knowledge about coaches by many business owners, and frankly because many business coaches fail to achieve positive results.   The following discussion helps managers understand how to understand why you need a business coach.

Your BUSINESS needs a business coach if it is:

  • Plateaued and needs help to grow to the next level
  • Is not generating the level of profit typical of your industry
  • Facing a major opportunity or threat
  • New and in a startup or early growth stage
  • Experiencing a major business transition: sale, merger, inheritance, bankruptcy

YOU need a business coach if you are:

  • Don’t have a boss you are accountable to
  • Doing well and think you have all the answers
  • You are brilliant at what you do, but are not a people manager
  • You need a second opinion
  • Fear the unknown

What is a business coach?

A good coach is a trusted advisor who has the knowledge and experience to evaluate specific issues in your business or life.  Coaches approach performance improvement systematically and provide ongoing support during the execution of actions to achieve positive change.

What is business coaching?

Business coaching is a process that focuses on learning and self-discovery by the client, in which the coach acts as a guide to facilitate the process.  It is NOT providing answers and direction to the client with limited follow-up or accountability by the consultant.

How is coaching different than consulting

Consultants are more focused on answers than questions, and are  hired for their specific expertise at solving problems.  Consulting is a methodology based upon providing solutions. Coaching is an inquisitive process, where the coach asks questions and listens to allowing the client discover their own answers.  This helps to establish the client’s ownership of the decisions and results.  A good coach will provide a mix of these two approaches depending on the situation the client is in, and may even vary the mix over time with the same client.

Download and read our Ebook “Goals Based Coaching to Drive Change” written by Art Helmstetter to learn how you can select and effectively use a business coach.

Read more at Forbes Magazine– “The Benefits of a Business Coach” by small business ownerBrittany Hodak, the co-founder of ‘ZinePak