Well, for many of us our business is like our child.
If you have children, you might remember what it was like when you just had your first baby.
For me it was like this:
With my first one, I felt very insecure. I wanted to know that I was doing exactly the right thing. I read books, I asked my own mother, I made sure to go to every monthly check-up at the baby consultation bureau. In my country, they are THE authority for monitoring the growth and wellbeing of your baby.
As each appointment approached, I made sure I was prepared. I had a book where everything about my daughter’s growth was recorded and monitored, and I always took it with me. Anything and everything I wanted to know, I asked. And I took their advice very seriously. When there was a concern, they sent me to a specialist. Luckily, the only time this happened, it turned out that there was nothing wrong.
The point I’m making is this: there was nobody else I would have listened to, or taken the advice of, than THE authority. I only wanted the best for my baby. And I knew I had to learn and grow into becoming a mom.
Many of us behave completely differently with our business.
One authority in this field is the chamber of commerce, yet most of the people who work there never had a business of their own. It makes you wonder, how can they give sound advice to people who are starting a business?
Add to this the enormous number of business coaches who never had a business of their own either but are very eager to help you grow your business. These “business coaches” have only one business model: to get as many business owners as their clients. And usually, they can only teach you the strategy they use themselves (which is the way they got these business owners as their clients).
Whilst the advice given by the experts of the baby consultation bureau is free, business advice is not.
If there’s anything the past 10 years of mentoring businesswomen has taught me, it’s that the same issues recur when women want to grow their businesses.
This is why I created “The Women’s Blueprint for Business Success”
with nine areas that are essential to master when you want to grow your business.
This article builds on Area 9, Help & Support. There are a total of 9 areas, all interrelated. Focusing on just one area will not bring a significant difference to your business. Each one affects the other. So, if you’re serious about scaling and growing your business, you must consistently work in ALL areas.
A business blueprint is a strategic plan that guides female entrepreneurs on the productivity requirements, the necessary jobs, the milestones, the targets, and the expected outcomes. A business blueprint is a plan for how you will strategically execute your business.
We think we’d be as picky about getting the best advice for our business, the same way we are with our baby. But sadly, most people are not.
For baby help, we are not being sold to. We listen to doctors, midwives, and other healthcare professionals because they are certified and trained in that area. They are the experts.
On the other hand, for business advice, people hardly do the same. They listen not to those who are qualified and have business experience of their own, but to those who can sell to them the best.
And these “business coaches,” can sell themselves very well. They speak your language, they show you what you lack, they rub in your pain points, they ask you exactly the right questions and show you what your business can be like in the future. They are trained, yes. But they are trained to sell to you. And more often than not, they do not have any business of their own.
And that is exactly what is happening all the time. Over and over and over. The business coaching industry consists of lots of people who have no clue.
Many of them joined some training programs with some business mentors, and they go on to teach other people the same things. Basically,, they are interns with no proper experience yet. They have not seen proof that it works until you become their client.
As a parent, you wouldn’t. Yet, many businesswomen do.
It amazes me how many people become business coaches with very little business experience of their own, and how easily they get clients. It is the reason I am very reluctant to use “business coaching” for what I do.
I sold my first business after 22 years. After all that time, I figured I knew quite a lot about business, and I wanted to help other business owners with my own experience. I’d heard that this was called consulting or coaching.
There was one time that I was in a networking event and I introduced myself as a business coach. This person said:
“Oh, are you one of those who teach people how to grow their business without having experience at all?”
I was shocked and offended. He’d only had a business for 3 years. Who was he to say that to me?
But really it had nothing to do with me. It was the word ‘business coach’ that did it.
At that time I had no idea where this came from.
Now, more than 10 years later, I completely understand. It saddens me to see how many business coaches there are with no business experience, and how many clients they get because they can sell very well.
It has happened to me many times. I did exactly what they told me to do. I am not a quitter, but I got nowhere near the results they promised. They did not tell me how many years it took them, and they could not show me other ways than their only success formula to get new clients.
You see, there are hundreds of success formulas to grow your business. There is never only one way.
Even after being in business for 30 years, I myself still hire business coaches. There is always a lot to learn. And when you teach other people, you should always be updated with the latest. Every good coach has a coach. And I am very critical about who should be my coach. They should be good enough to teach me.
So how can you find a good business coach?
There are some questions you should ask this person.
From experience, I know that not many businesswomen ask these questions.
If you ask me these questions, I can answer all of them. And if you think these are leading questions that will frame me in such a way that I am one of the few who could answer, feel free to ask me your own questions. Try me out.
He or she is a coach, trainer, teacher and mentor. In my opinion, these are all the qualities you should look for when you search for help to grow your business.
That is exactly the same way the baby consultation bureaus operates.
They answer all the questions you have, and when this is really not possible, they will send you to a specialist.
If you think, “I am just a beginner everybody can help me,” just remember what you would do if it was your baby. Would you do the same? You were also a beginner mum, but you wanted the best advice for your baby. You DESERVE to have the best advice for your business too.
Don’t join a group program where you will have no one-on-one sessions with the coach. You need to be able to have tailored advice to your situation. And you should be able to get answers to your specific questions. If this is not something you can afford, I suggest you wait until you have saved some more money.
When they ask you a huge amount of money when you want to work one-on-one with them, and they cannot answer all the questions on this list positively, you know there are only a few things they can do very well. And one of this is selling to you! Not to mention positioning and branding themselves.
When they give you no time to think about it, they know that once you end your conversation, you’ll have time to come to your senses and come up with rational reasons not to work with them. This is a common selling trick.
I personally believe that we should respect the clients enough to make their own solid decisions by themselves. So, when they want to think about it, I always respect that and give them some time. This is one of the ways you know that a business coach is worth checking out.
They should have at least two different businesses. When the only business they have is coaching and teaching you how to grow your business, be careful.
The minimum should be 10 years of business experience. My standard is that they should have had a business before they even start helping others grow theirs.
This is when you’re not looking for a group program.
When they say that this is too much risk, take note. This depends on the contract, the business, and the circumstances.
This doesn’t mean social media networks. This is an important factor when you are looking for them to introduce you to their network.
The experience they have in building and training team members is important when you want to expand your own team.
Take note that working online internationally is completely different from working internationally offline.
Are they experienced enough to help you for years and years to come? Or can they only guide you in a certain phase of your business, such as when you are just starting out?
Sometimes, you might want to work with a male business coach because they can help you strengthen some of the traits that women are not naturally good at. Or you might prefer a woman because she understands exactly what you need and what you are going through? No matter what your preference is, it is best that they can do both. There are many women after all who have operated and thrived in male-dominated industries
Growing your business is one thing but managing it while it grows is completely different.
It involves hiring people, outsourcing to them, monitoring their output, and much more.
I hope this list is helpful to you. And I designed it to make sure that you become discerning and critical when you are in the process of hiring a coach.
I absolutely recommend that everybody hire a business coach. Business is often about trial and error. With a coach, you will be able to skip many of these phases. And while there are a lot of business coaches out there, I hope you recognize the difference in the quality and business experience of each one. I hope that you want only the best for your business. Hiring a coach costs money, yes, but ultimately, it is an investment in your business and yourself.
My name is Tineke Rensen and I am a business coach for women. I created the system “A Women’s Blueprint for Business Success,” where I work with female entrepreneurs in 9 major areas in their business.
There are many out there who call themselves “business coaches” but have never had their own business. What you need is a business coach who has experience in scaling and growing businesses. And I’ve had plenty. In my 31 years of experience, I’ve become an expert on many areas, and I can help you with whatever topic you need help with. Because it NEVER is about changing just one thing that’ll pivot your business around
If you want to learn more about what makes a good business coach for women check out this article about the 20 questions you should ask a business coach for female entrepreneurs.
Interested to learn how you can work with me one-on-one to build your one-woman gig to a proper business and double your income within a year? Click here now to schedule a quick 15-minute call with me and get started.
Tineke Rensen is in business for 29 years. She built an international Outdoor and Survival business from scratch and sold this after 22 years. Tineke was a national whitewater kayaking champion.
She now is one of the most all-round business accelerators you can find. There are very few topics she cannot help you with your business. Many people find it hard to believe when they hear this. How much do you think you know about a topic if you live it day and night for 28 years?
Tineke works with female business owners to grow to their full business potential. She uses her own system the “Blueprint for a Successful Business Makeover”. She is a women’s business coach.
Tineke is the author of “Maximum Business Growth For Women”
If you want to watch business videos with Tineke Rensen you can like the Powerful Business Academy Youtube Channel