OK, so you have your coaching qualification in hand, the paper still hot from the printers. You can barely contain your excitement about being a professional coach. You have visions of scores of clients flocking to your office wanting to reap the benefit of your experience and expertise.
That’s the sound of your expectations hitting the hard wall of reality when you realise that there’s much more to running a coaching business. You’ll have to register a company, get an accountant, figure out a marketing plan, create social media profiles, negotiate contracts – all this without your first client even darkening your doorstep.
Enter “Kickstart Your Coaching Business”, a course designed for people like you. Julia Kerr-Henkel, a coach and change expert teamed up with Lita Currie, a learning facilitator to fill this need in the market. “We have found that although coaching schools cover how to coach, few of them focus on how to run a successful business.” Julia explains. “New coaches, as well as experienced people, have benefited from this course.” Lita agrees enthusiastically. “It’s all the stuff you wished you knew when you started out. We use our and others’ experience to show new coaches how not to make costly mistakes.”
This 2-day course covers many aspects of setting up and running a small business, of which the most important is the “WHY”. Julia clarifies: “In Simon Sinek’s well-known book “Start with Why” he states that people buy why you do what you do more so than what you sell, but most coaches haven’t really thought that through for their businesses. Identifying why you are in the coaching business in the first place in an accurate way is the first critical step, which will impact on how you market yourself, which clients you attract and ultimately how successful you are.”
Discussion, graphic facilitation , templates and practical exercises are provided for all elements of the business value chain and are hallmarks of the course experience – everything from writing a business plan and a compelling coaching profile to taking a brief and submitting a winning proposal. “Coaches have the opportunity to work on their own strategies while collaborating with others, learning from peers and drawing on the advice of experts in branding, supervision and networking” says Lita. “We discuss aspects like what to charge, which contract and templates you’ll need, even how to use social media to build your brand and attract the right kind of business.”
To be successful, new coaching businesses need to:
- Establish the basic elements needed to run a business, like technology and infrastructure;
- Pay attention to crafting their personal and professional brand
- Distinguish their niche markets that they focus on;
- Agree what to charge, including what they are willing to negotiate on;
- Be able to take a brief from a client and recognise potential problems;
- Get value from networking, supervision and professional associations; and
- Take deep care of themselves – something of particular importance for coaches.
Julia is passionate about uplifting the coaching profession and community in South Africa. “We’d like to create a mindset of sharing and abundance,” she explains. “Assisting other coaches to run professional businesses, to be confident, to feel supported will lead to their success and will in turn provide a better service to clients. This will benefit not only coaches and their clients, but the industry and the country in general. It’s about paying it forward. ”
“Applicable, appropriate useful learnings. Well-structured course with a super balance of interaction, teaching and group input and interaction.” – Feedback from a learner.
“This workshop closes the gap between having a coaching diploma and getting into the working space in coaching, professionally. I found it invaluable and am already applying what I learnt.” – feedback from Coach