I am a small business owner and I have a business coach. Having a business coach has been a rewarding experience. But I would never have experienced the benefits of coaching without a recommendation from my client and friend, Mike Wesner.
Mike was starting enrollmentFUEL and was looking for individuals to help him with the startup process. He was making lots of connections with people he had come across throughout his past, including me. One of the people he reconnected with was a friend of his from the U.S. Navy, David Quick. Dave had an executive coaching business and had begun coaching Mike through establishing his new company. I was also going through a transition, having become the managing partner of my accounting firm. As such, Mike suggested that I give Dave a try as a coach, which I did.
It’s fair to say that I was skeptical of the coaching process. I agreed to the coaching experience primarily out of curiosity. Mike kept telling me about these incredible conversations he was having with Dave. I saw an opportunity to learn from the experience. I wanted to know what Mike was doing as a coachee. I thought I would do a few sessions with Dave to see if this might be something I could provide to my clients. At the least, I thought it would be something that I could recommend to small business owners. Obviously this was not something that I would want or need myself. I was wrong.
Our first session was a get-to-know-you session. I liked Dave a lot but was unwilling to make the time commitment to meet on a regular basis. We ended the session with the understanding that I would give him a call if I had something to discuss. It was not until Dave lead the first enrollmentFUEL leaders conference that I really saw the value that he was bringing to Mike and his new company.
Mike had brought together six people for the first enrollmentFUEL leaders conference. We were from all over the United States. The only connection we had was that we all knew Mike. Dave took this group and began to mold us into a team. By the end of the day, we had established a foundation to build our corporate identity on. We had a mission statement. We had drafted a company vision and values document. And we agreed to hold the team accountable to the corporate values we established. I left the seminar energized in applying what we had done in the seminar to my accounting firm.
In the conference, Dave recommended several books on organizational health and structure. These books included Traction and The Advantage. I read Traction. The other CPA in my accounting firm read Traction. The two of us met together several times to discuss the book. We planned. And then one day, I noticed that my energy had faded. Something had happened that caused me to put working IN my business ahead of working ON my business. Having recognized this, I called Dave. We have had regular sessions ever since.
For enrollmentFUEL, Dave has expanded his services to coaching the entire leadership team on a monthly basis. In addition, he moderates a monthly leadership luncheon via Skype. Through his involvement with the company, we have worked through several growing pains.
So what have I learned from my experience with a business coach? Simple. A business coach:
- Can be a valuable outside resource to discuss your business growth and your personal development.
- Can be an independent source to talk to and bounce ideas off of.
- Can hold your feet to the fire and be your accountability partner.
- Can listen. When was the last time you had someone listen to you without interruption?
These are just a few reasons why a small business owner could benefit from having a business coach. A business coach is valuable to small business owners because most small business owners do not have such a resource available within their company. Very often, the owner is the leadership team with few employees.
So, whether you are the owner of a sole proprietorship with no employees or you are seeking to build a business that can thrive without you, a business coach can be a valuable addition to your inner circle.