Ask yourself these 10 questions

Once you have made the decision to call in help with doing business, you are in for a quest.

How do you find the right business coach among the hundreds of coaches?

If you answer the questions below, you are able to find the person who will help you with your specific and unique question / situation in a form of a help request.

Most important questions

First, consider what exactly you need. Holds this request a specialistic or a generalistic question? As an example:

  •  Do you need help in achieving goals of your company, then that is a general question for an all-round business coach,
  • Do you want to learn what the best negotiation strategy is with one specific supplier of yours, which is a specialist question for a trainer in a negotiation training.

There are many other examples and specialisms.

What do you need exactly?

The vast majority of people who call themselves coach started from their specialism such as: marketing, finance, business management, or entrepreneurship. Some gradually discovered that they can help other entrepreneurs more broadly and then call themselves business coach or entrepreneur coach.
However, remember a good horse does not make a good rider. Like the soccer player Pelé stated: “Often a great player doesn’t become a great coach. And sometimes players who weren’t very good become good managers.”
So experience as a specialist does not guarantee you the best guidance or coaching.

Check the coach’s background and that it matches your wishes.

Choosing criteria

The 10 questions below will give you insight into which business coach suits you best and how you can find this person.

1. Has the coach followed studies to become a business coach or is the coach self-made?

Many business coaches are experienced entrepreneurs themselves, but have usually not followed any study in the field of coaching nor in the field of entrepreneurship and / or business. Like; international business, business administration or a study small business and entrepreneurship. At most, they have taken a course of a few months. They mainly rely on their own experience, this is no guarantee that they can provide substantiated, competent and adequate guidance in your unique situation.

Other coaches have studied to become a business coach and have acquired the knowledge and skills, are familiar with the scientifically proven methodologies and ways to help you further.
However, a diploma obtained in the past can provide a false sense of security. Namely, it does not reflect what the current performance level of this person is.

In addition to following a specific training course with a diploma, there are also self-taught people who acquire the same or often more knowledge and skills. Chances are they are better than someone with a degree, because they often have a higher intrinsic motivation, are enthusiastic, have a high level of commitment and a high degree of perseverance. This leads to much broader knowledge and expertise than that of someone in one specific field.

How important is it to you that your business coach has completed a different study, which has nothing to do with entrepreneurship, business management?

2. Do you find it important that the business coach has also followed a coaching course?

Business coaching, in principle business administration, is the branch of science that deals with the organization and environment of companies. Business Administration has an integrated -all or comprehensive-, multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary approach in which attention is paid in a scientific way to practice-oriented issues within companies.

In essence, coaching and coaching educations have no relevance to business administration.
“A coach is an educated and trained professional who methodically and phenomenologically helps his client or a team to change what hinders and to process what stimulates to achieve certain (personal) goals” (van der Pol, 2018).

Business coaching is about achieving business goals and coaching is about personal development.
A business administrator with a coaching and / or psychological background can be of great added value. A company consists of people, each with their own personality, challenges, and points for development. A company can pursue the most admirable goals, but if the people cannot achieve these goals yet, then the company will not achieve these goals.
It is more likely that the business goals will be achieved, with a coach who can guide both business and personal development.

How important do you think it is if a business coach also has background in a coaching and / or psychological?

3. What do clients say about their coaching and coaching process?

You may like it when you know someone who has already been with a coach and who can talk about his or her experience. You could see that as a reliable source and it is nice if you can test your doubts and thoughts against their experiences.

Business coaching is a service. It is not a product that has a clearly defined way of working as it has been developed for a specific purpose. Good coaching is specifically tailored to your unique situation, so no coaching process is the same.
This makes comparing testimonials, reviews or other sources very difficult or even impossible.

4. Does the coach have a lot of relevant experience as an entrepreneur or in the specialism you are looking for help with?

Many entrepreneurs who later become a business coach are older and have gained experience as an entrepreneur in their own company / companies. As mentioned in the introduction, experience as a specialist or entrepreneur does not guarantee good and effective guidance for your unique situation and goals.
In addition, a coach’s past performance or his or her age does not guarantee future performance.

How important is age and / or experience to you?

5. What kind of click do you experience with a coach?

Experiencing a good click is the most important aspect. If you don’t feel 100% safe, you won’t be able to fully open up and it will be harder for you to get to the root of the problem. The trajectory remains superficial. The only indicator to discover a click is to trust your own gut feeling or your intuition. This may seem woolly, but it is the most important element in a good collaboration.

Without a click and / or confidence, a coaching process will be more difficult, cause frustration, and the result may be disappointing. Our advice; not to start or continue this coaching track with that coach.

A personal conversation is a good way to experience the click with the coach, but unfortunately it is not always possible. A number of business coaches sell online webinars programs. They give a big discount if you make a decision to buy before the end of the webinar. All this without having spoken to the coach. You usually end up in an online community or group without a direct connection with the coach.
Is this what you want?

On the other hand, there are coaches who offer a conversation in a webinar, so that you can get to know the person.
Think about what is important to you.

Our advice; always try to speak with the coach before engaging. It would be best to have this conversation in person.

6. What kind of coaching do you want: 1-on-1, with different coaches or in a group?

Most of the major well-known companies that offer business coaching only offer group programs with large numbers of participants. Often a standard program is offered and only limited attention is paid to your unique situation / request, as long as it fits in the program.

Other companies mainly use well-known coaches as the face of the company, but your actual guidance is done by other business coaches. For example, you could experience a click with the “spokesperson”, but then the question is whether that same click is experienced with the accompanying coach or coaches.
In that case, request an intake interview to experience whether there is a click with the coach or coaches and whether they have the knowledge and skills that suit your situation.

Do you want your coaching: 1-on-1, with different coaches, or do you prefer a group?

The advantage of a large group of entrepreneurs is that many people are in the same boat -at least, that is what they belief- and it can be very nice to strengthen each other in the feeling that you understand and help each other. In addition, you will receive many ideas / advice and you will hear how others would approach your question.

How effective is group coaching, where you get advice from fellow peers?

A disadvantage of group coaching is that your interaction with the coach is restricted, because he has to divide his attention. This limits you in the progression around your situation / question.
In addition, the result of a group setting is that people are acknowledged in their unpleasant situation. The affirmative group session does not help you to solve your question, independently. It’s just recognition. Well-intentioned advice is often given by fellow peers, but the chance that it matches your question an underlying question is very small and therefore probably remains unanswered.

So check whether you think personal attention is important?

The smaller the group, the more attention there is for you and your company. If you are coached 1-on-1, you naturally have the full attention of your coach.

From a financial point of view, 1-on-1 coaching does not have to be more expensive than coaching in a group setting. This is because the differences in asking price between the options offered and different providers are large.

What is the best fit for you and the investment you are willing to make?

7. How do you rate an online program?

In addition to the physical coaching tracks, there are also online programs to follow. These online programs are easy to follow on your own time. It does require some self-discipline to fully finish the program.

If you want to gain practical knowledge -increase a competence-, such as building a website step by step or optimizing SEO, an online training can be very valuable.

Realize that an online coaching program is not the most effective for solving your unique question. The chance that a “one size, fits all” program will fit in with you and your situation is very small.
Furthermore, an independent study or program can be great to learn something, but a standard program will not help you grow.

Developing a specific competence can be part of a coaching process, but coaching is often broader than purely developing a specific competence.

8. Does the coach suit your current situation?

What phase is your company in? Are you a pre-starter, starter, do you want to change the course with a different business model, or do you have growing pains because you are scaling up?

At the moment, what do you need most?

9. What are you willing to do to achieve your goal?

You cannot build a business anywhere without investing, unfortunately. All successful entrepreneurs invest in the growth of their business, as they continue development. This to make a living.

What is the biggest problem in your company right now and what are the consequences of not doing anything about it? What will you do to fix this problem so you can continue?

Determine your budget and check different websites of coaches to see what you can expect for an amount. Contact them and start a conversation! Do not step into something impulsively, but see if it will solve your problem and if it is the approach that suits you.

Consider whether you are looking for a quick fix or long-term solution.

10. Are you tempted to make an impulsive purchase or do you allow yourself time to consider an offer?

One webinar after another comes by on social media, for which you can register for free. One calls it an online training, another calls it a masterclass.

Remember that when registering for such a webinar, seduction techniques are usually used to sell you something. You are regularly put under time pressure to quickly decide on a program for which you have limited information and for which you pay thousands of pounds/dollars.

You could also see this article as a seduction technique / advertisement for Cthrough coaching & consulting. We understand very well that all coaches -including us- can easily state that they can help you with your question / request.
However, we hope that you make the right choice, where your investment is put to good use with effective guidance in solving your challenge, problem or conflict. Hence these 10 questions, so that hopefully you can more easily find the right coach that really suits you.

In short: It all starts with you.

  • What do you need and what questions do you have?
  • Do you want to learn practical things?
  • Do you want to grow as an entrepreneur and / or as a person?
  • What is your biggest obstacle at the moment?

These questions and the click with your future coach are central.

Do you have any other criteria that are important to you or do you look at it differently? Send a response via the contact form.

Would you like to know more about our approach? Contact us and request a meeting in which yourself and / or your company have the main focus plus how we can help you.