A business coach is a tremendous asset for your personal and business success. I know this from my own experience, and in recent years as a business and executive coach myself with clients who have achieved great things through being coached. Here is my story...
The Business Coach That Helped My Business Journey.
Once I opened the doors to SVC in 1999 and after I had got over the excitement of having my own company, it reality hit home when I thought where do I start? and what comes first?
I was fortunate enough to be introduced to Tim, he was a business coach, and was recommended to me by a friend.
Tim was a huge character, huge in size as well as personality. He was an honest guy, very eccentric, and at the time when I first started out, I found him quite intimidating. He had been there, made a lot of money, lost a lot of money and made it again.
As my business coach, Tim would always make me feel like I could do anything as long as I was prepared to roll up my sleeves and stop procrastinating. In his words “you get what you think about”.
I still use this regularly when doing team meetings to this day. Think about that sale and it will come in!
My Business Coach Challenged My Thinking.
I would meet with Tim once a week, and I can clearly remember on occasions driving back to my office so angry with him because he told me a few home truths. He challenged my thinking.
But, I also remember other times driving back to the office feeling absolutely on top of the world! I was so delighted because he’d given me the pat on the back that I so needed at that time. My business coach Tim really kept my feet on the ground.
I remember a few business coaching sessions during a period of time, when I had kept on and on about a certain employee (at this time my team had grown from just me, to quite a few people). This particular employee was absolutely driving me nuts, and was unfocused, not delivering, and had a terrible attitude. As a business owner the employee was doing things that really pressed my alarm button.
My business coach had listened to me talk about this problem many times over previous weeks. I was telling him the same thing about this member of staff over and over again.
My Business Coach Had Endless Patience.
During one particular session I could see my patient business coach rolling his eyes, as it was probably the fourth time I had discussed my employee issue with him. I have to remind you that it was a long time ago and coaching has moved on a lot since then, and so has Human Resources, but I want to give you a feeling of what having a business coach was like.
At times, Tim would shift from business coach to 'mentor' mode. He previously had my permission to do this, as I wanted his sage advice too.
We were sitting at his boardroom table and he asked me for a five-pound note. Then, right in front of my eyes, he stood up, walked across the room, and threw the five-pound note out the window! I thought to myself is he crazy??!! What is he doing? Now I’m a fiver down. His point was about wasting money.
After wasting my money, he then looked at me and told me to stop wasting any more money, and to get my backside back to the office and sort it out. And his parting words to me when I left the office were:
“Stop moaning, and
just get on with it!”
A Lesson Learned.
This was a massive business lesson to me. You see my job is to find other people jobs - not to remove their job!
Sometimes after everything you’ve tried you have to face reality. I believe in being fair and treating others how I would like to be treated. But you should also have expectations of people. And if you’ve tried everything you can possibly think of and people are just not playing ball, you’ve just got to get on with it.
And yes, I did get on with it.
It is Not So Lonely With A Business Coach.
As a CEO I have found this can be, and still is, a really lonely place to be. When there's nobody to confide in, when you have a challenge or a question it's a lonely feeling. It's just you and your gut instinct.
Whilst today I still work on my gut instinct, in the beginning this was not enough. My business coach gave me the confidence I needed when things got tough. He would inspire me, guide me to trust myself and give the practical advice that I so needed back then, and I will always be grateful.
I worked with my business coach for two years and believe wholeheartedly that I would not have moved on as quickly without him helping me. He sadly passed away after two years of working together and I can remember the day I found out, I was sitting at my desk and my initial thought was – how do I cope now? What do I do now? But he had given me the confidence to carry on, and to stand on my own two feet.
To this day, all these years later, I can still hear him in my head. Guiding me to make decisions, shouting at me when I doubt myself... “just get on with it”.
“Be The Best You Can Be”
Tim was not only a fantastic business coach, but he was a great friend whom I trusted, and I believe that’s what makes a good coach. They become a trusted ally, someone to bounce ideas off, and to inspire you to be the best you can be.
You need to be flexible in your thinking. You need to learn every single day. I’m a huge believer that with the right business coach you can:
You will benefit hugely in everything you do, as business coaching will challenge your thinking. A good business coach will not think for you but will guide and support your decisions. They will increase your confidence and your self-belief. It doesn’t mean however that they will fix it all… it is still primarily up to you.
Our thoughts should always be on success and solutions all the time. Empowering our teams, giving back, and being grateful. Your overall well-being also plays a really important part in all of this. Work smart and accept that you are always learning, and always will be learning.
I look at setbacks as a learning curve, that will get you there. However, a business coach can usually get you to where you want to be quicker that on your own.
The most important skill you can have is real life experience… evolving and running a successful business along with the pitfalls, the stress, the bad news, the cash flow.
It is so important to remember the key reason of why you do what you do. Why do you get up in the morning? Work with your values and be passionate - and it can get you a long way.
What are the key basics to look at?...
A big area that people find a challenge is not having the correct time management tools in place.
Self-awareness and business coaching is often pushed to the bottom of the list, when it should be right at the top. This is the essential area to look at to ensure a successful business and team.
As explained, my working with a business coach earlier in my career paid huge dividends! Time is not really an issue, it is often an excuse.
Making excuses such as time, or the cost, can become an obstruction.
This is where passion kicks in - if you love what you do and are feeling motivated - it just fits; we can find the time and the money to become better.
My Business Coach Helped Me With Self Belief.
Before you can begin to help others, it is crucial that you have a good understanding of yourself. If you choose to work with a ‘mask’, you will be filled with doubt, which others may pick up on.
Self-Awareness is not just about confidence, it is how our personality is made up. It helps you to understand that change is good.
Having a flexible, positive approach towards oneself
and others is key to your success.
Celebrate Your Success.
In life we all too often focus on our weaknesses and it is so easy to solely focus on the problems you are having. You can find negativity everywhere you look, but if we just take a few minutes each day to:
… it will empower you and give you clarity and purpose to each day.
At SVC we celebrate successes big or small, and every team member leaves the office feeling inspired and filled with motivation for the next day.
What Are You Waiting For?
If you are sitting contemplating working with a business coach to improve your business… take action! What have you got to lose?
Like Tim would have said...
"Just get on with it!"
If something is holding you back, standing in your way, or stopping you from achieving your goals or dreams:
As CEO and Founder of the SVC companies, I remain actively engaged in providing business coaching and delivering leadership & management training.