10 Reasons To Hire A Life Coach: Part 2

Reasons to Hire a Life CoachWhy should you hire a life coach? If you missed my previous blog post, you can find it HERE. We talked about how a coach can help you establish boundaries, expectations, critical time-management strategies, communication techniques, and business and marketing plans—all toward your goal of being a successful mompreneur. If you’re still not convinced… stick around—the day is young—and these next five points really dig into some of the biggest issues we face as moms in the marketplace.

Let’s dive right into our next five reasons to hire a life coach:

6. Focus. Now I know that may sound simple, but mompreneurs are notorious for virtually bursting at the seams with creativity, great ideas, ambition, and passion. So often we are running as hard as we can, working as many hours as possible. Many times we do not get adequate rest or we’re not really spending quality time with our family. So while we’re working so hard at our business, without some external focus to keep us rooted and grounded in our goals, becoming frazzled, overwhelmed, or even stuck are very real dangers. Having that outsider’s perspective is key, and sometimes it can be just the thing you need to help you stop spinning your wheels and get you moving forward again.

7. Get out of your own way. I mentioned being stuck, right? So many of us have hang-ups when it comes to being able to really “sell” ourselves or our businesses. We may pay money to advertise in a magazine or directory, but when it comes to face-to-face contact, we often allow that to become a wedge that can stall our progress in a major way. A life coach can help you get out of your own way and back on the path toward business development, growth and success.

8. Commitment. I know some of you are probably groaning right now. Please hear me out. We all struggle with this to some degree or another. It’s the allure of the “next new thing,” isn’t it? We get interested, we get started… and then some other bright, shiny object comes along and all of a sudden we’re not as committed as we thought we were. Well, if you’re going to be a real, true, honest-to-goodness business owner, you are going to need some stickiness. So what a coach can do is help you practice making commitments and sticking to them by providing accountability, something that is often lacking in our adult lives, but also something that can take us to that next level when it comes to being a successful business owner and mompreneur.

9. Celebrate. Who doesn’t love to celebrate, right? As a coach, I am here to sing your praises, to shout, “Woohoo!” and to cheer you on when you do a good job. Often we just do not get enough acknowledgement from those who are closest to us. We, as mompreneurs, need to hear that we are being successful along the way. A life coach will celebrate those successes with you, and train you to recognize them yourself. I promise that will be the thing that helps lift you up when times get tough.

10. Accept the path you are on. One of the things I believe strongly in is that wherever you are is where you need to be. You know exactly what you need to know. You are having exactly the experience you need right now—tough as it may be—in order to get you to that next place down the road. A coach—and this is one of my favorite things I do as a coach—can help you see that whatever you are going through is actually the perfect next step for where you are headed. Knowing that is such a support and really a firm foundation on which to build your business.

I hope this has been helpful to you. If you have been thinking about whether a life coach might be right for you, these are some really great points to ponder.

I love hearing from you! What about you—have you worked with a life coach? What has been your experience? Have you evaluated these points in your own life?

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10 Reasons To Hire A Life Coach: Part 1

10 Reasons to Hire a Life CoachA lot of the mompreneurs I’ve worked with in my coaching career have told me that they spent quite a bit of time thinking about hiring me before actually taking the leap and doing it. Some weren’t exactly sure what life coaching was about or what a coaching relationship would look like. Some even admitted to feeling embarrassed about hiring a coach to support them, almost as if it meant they were a failure at doing what they wanted to do or being who they wanted to be in life. Well, over the next couple of blog posts, we’re going to talk about this. So if you want to be successful on your own terms, create a business that works even when you don’t, get the buy-in and support you need from your spouse and family, and spend quality time with your kids… read on!

Here are the first five reasons you should hire a life coach:

1. Boundaries. It goes without saying that time management is always going to be our #1 problem as mompreneurs because we’ve signed up for two completely full-time-with-overtime-no-time-off jobs. It’s just hard for one person to do all of that! So one of the first things I do when I work with someone is help create some boundaries. We do this by creating an “ideal schedule,” which identifies your top moneymaking talent—where you’re going to get the most bang for your buck—and then incorporates systems and routines so that you are not just aimlessly trying to work whenever you get the chance (like when the family is eating dinner or the kids are asleep or they’re at a soccer game and you’re multitasking like crazy), but learning to really focus and be intentional with your time.

2. Expectations. Once you set some boundaries, you can begin to set expectations with your family, clients, colleagues, vendors, and friends. Now everybody in your life knows that you work on certain days at certain hours, and conversely, they also know that you have downtime with your family on certain days at certain hours. Being clear with these expectations enables you to meet the expectations of others in your life without having to constantly negotiate schedules and priorities.

3. Critical time-management strategies. We talked a little bit about creating an ideal schedule, but beyond that, we need to figure out what your high pay-off actions are, how to set those high pay-off actions as one of the first things you do each day, and then how to handle errands and to-do lists of things that are not time-critical—things like housework or grocery shopping—all those “extra” things you do as a mother. We need to figure out how to incorporate all of that rather than ignoring it and hoping it will go away. If I can teach you some critical time-management strategies, I am absolutely certain I can give you more of your time to do what you want to do with your life instead of always trying to figure out where to grab a few more minutes.

4. Communication techniques. This is so, so, so important because you need the support of your spouse and your kids; you need your clients to respond well to you; you need your vendors to be on the same page as you. Communication is key to all of that. There are so many of us that have, for one reason or another, developed some unhealthy, unproductive, or just plain ineffective communication strategies. These are the sorts of things a coach can help you work on to make sure you are communicating clearly, in such a way that you get what you want, be it support from your spouse, understanding and love from your kids, or a new project from a client.

5. Business and marketing plans. I could go on and on and on about this point, but it’s one that many mompreneurs don’t want to hear a lot about. People are fundamentally scared of creating business and marketing plans, perhaps because there is something almost terrifying about writing your goals down on paper, especially if you have a fear of failure, and let’s be honest—who doesn’t? But this is so critical to the long-term success of your business. You cannot do it without a plan. I hope this has piqued your interest and perhaps even answered a few of the questions you have about just what all this life-coaching business is about anyway. If so, stay tuned—for five more reasons you should hire a life coach.

Talk to me! Which of these five points resonates with you? What could you use some help with?

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Is Coaching Worth Paying For?

I coach a lot of mompreneur coaches–women who have experienced the value of coaching in their own lives firsthand and who are now committed to helping others. Those who are most successful follow the same path my own coach, Rhonda Hess, taught me: Carefully choose the right niche and a narrow target market to find all the clients you want.

Today I share a guest post by Rhonda that I think beautifully explains the power of these choices and how they help attract clients who will pay you what you’re worth. Whether or not your are a coach, you can certainly benefit from the lesson Rhonda teaches about finding the people who are most likely willing to highly value what you offer.

Guest post by Rhonda Hess

There are still people out there who don’t understand the value of coaching. Some define coaching the way Ambrose Bierce defined consulting: “To seek another’s approval of a course already decided on.” And some people think hiring a coach is like hiring a friend to listen to you.

But then there are people like Google CEO Eric Schmidt – the lead architect of the most successful business growth story in recent history. When asked to share the best business advice he ever received, he said “Everyone needs a coach.

So, is coaching worth paying for? The answer seems to be: It depends on WHO you ask.

I think I know where you come out on this question, or you wouldn’t be staking your career on the power of coaching. But here’s my point:  Draw your clients from groups of people that believe coaching is worth the investment.

So how do you find and connect with those people? The answer may not be obvious, but it is straightforward.

Choose a Niche Market Full of Seekers

Certain groups of people, because of who they are, will readily invest in their own personal and professional development. Here are three examples of niche markets that are full of seekers:

  • Mompreneurs know that adding a business to their list of responsibilities is a stretch, and they want help rising to the challenge.
  • C-suite executives know they need allies to help them grow into the leader they want to be.
  • Coaches too, are hungry to learn, grow and develop themselves in multiple ways.

The best way to find people who truly “get” the value of coaching is to focus on attracting a specific group of people that you know will invest in their own development.

Meet Them Where They Live

I know that you didn’t launch a coaching business so you could market. You got into coaching to make a difference. But if you want to do that and financially prosper at it, then connect with people who will invest in your services, and keep connecting with them.

That’s what smart marketing does — it helps you build relationships and trust with those people. Smart marketing starts with listening, just like good coaching does.

When you’re coaching a client you are primarily listening and asking questions, right? You draw out their insights about where they want to go and what’s getting in their way. You listen into what they say. You tune into where they are coming from, so that your questions and responses will land with them.

It’s time for coaches to stop trying to convince people that coaching will help them. Instead, meet your prospects where they live. This approach to marketing plays to your strengths as a coach, because it centers around what the client is seeking, rather than what you do.

Simple Marketing for Coaches

  1. Choose a specific, easy-to-find, group of seekers to serve. You don’t need to limit your client base to these people. But do focus your marketing efforts on them and use their language.
  2. Find out what they most want and what is stopping them from getting it. What will motivate them to invest in their personal or professional development? What are they seeking as a return on that investment?
  3. Then use your powerful coaching skills to help them get what they want.

With this approach, you will never again have to sell anyone on the idea of coaching, or on your particular flavor of coaching. But you do need to believe in the value of your services. This is your chance to show that coaching is worth paying for.

I teach this approach in my workshop, Champion Your Ideal Coaching Market. Enroll now and learn how to connect reliably with prospects who want and will value what you offer.

Rhonda Hess is an internationally recognized business mentor and the Founder of Prosperous Coach®. Rhonda has a gift for helping coaches choose and champion a highly profitable niche so they can coach more, market less and blow the lid off their income. Grab Rhonda’s free ecourse now: 5 Secrets No One Ever Told You About Your Coaching Niche and join the conversations on her award winning blog. http://prosperouscoachblog.com

 

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You’d be a good fit to my coaching group if…

  • women-group-pic-mom-biz-coach-mom-entrepreneur-coach-mompreneurYou signed up for both motherhood and being an entrepreneur (What were you thinking? Ha! You’d be in great company here ;-).
  • You thought you’d be able to work less and be with your family more by working for yourself, but have found quite the opposite to be true.
  • You have noticed your competition doing strange, interesting, amazing things and are feeling like your own new ideas are about as interesting as reading “Good Night, Moon” for the 23rd time in a row to your toddler.
  • You’re ready to throw in the towel and “get a real job” (like the one you left behind a while ago because it no longer meshed with your values and priorities).
  • You have so many great ideas but lack the ability or knowledge of how to get them done.
  • You work because you are driven by your passion and purpose.
  • You are tired of doing your work for free or very little pay.
  • You realize you can’t call it a business if you don’t make a profit at some point.
  • You aren’t clear on your target market or how to reach them or how to create solutions to their problems.
  • Your heart tells you you’re doing the right thing, but your spouse or your family doesn’t understand why you’re working (and in fact, even resents your work).

If even a couple of these statements remind you of words you’ve heard coming out of your mouth lately, chances are you’re ready for a change. You’ve tried everything you know how to do to be successful, or to get the results you want, but nothing seems to work. That’s okay. We have all been there, and done that.

In fact, all the mom entrepreneurs who are members in my coaching groups have “been there, done that.” Most of the statements above come from comments made by my clients at the beginning of my program.

Here’s what they say once we’ve been working together for a while:

“Lara, you really have a way of saying exactly what I need to hear. I wonder sometimes if you’re somehow reading my mind.”

“I did exactly what you told me to do and I’m getting new customers and new orders from twitter several times a week now!”

“I didn’t realize before I joined this group how lonely I was. It’s so great to have a group of women I can trust and bounce my ideas off of. I love how we trade ideas with each other. It’s like we’re each others’ “Board of Advisors.”

“The most valuable thing I got from our coaching call today is that I’m not alone in feeling like I’m the only one who doesn’t understand this stuff, and the inspiration to stay committed to my goals thanks to everyone’s support!”

“Everytime I hear one of the other members share a story about her success, I get so charged up because I realize I can achieve my own version of success, too! You girls are amazing and are motivating the heck out of me!”

I’m a woman, a wife, a mom to three kids under the age of seven, and I’m a coach and an entrepreneur because I need to work in order to be satisfied and happy. It’s who I am. I’m a straight-shooter, an open and honest communicator, and extremely compassionate while still supporting you to do what you’re committed to, even if it’s hard and a little (or a lot) scary. I’ve learned a lot in my four years of coaching and running a business while raising a family. And I’d love to share everything I know about helping you be successful in the work you do while creating a life you love to live.

Care to join us? I have four openings in one of my mom entrepreneur coaching groups right now. We meet the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month for an hour at Noon ET via my free conference line. The cost is $195/person (with a maximum of five participants per group). Plan to make a six month commitment so you’ll get the full value of the coaching experience.

Call me (519-990-4458), email me at lara (at) mombizcoach (dot) com, or tweet me if you’d like to schedule a 20 minute session to brainstorm an idea and see if we’re a good match for each other.

I hope to be talking to you soon!

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Four easy steps to finding new clients

If you’re one of the legions of women out there running home-based businesses, chances are that at some point, you’ve hit the wall with regards to finding new clients. You’ve had lunches, parties, coffees, get-togethers with every friend, relative and neighbor you can think of. You know that you’ve asked everyone you personally know to either buy your goods and services or to refer someone they think might benefit from them. When you’ve exhausted your inner circle, where do you go to get more clients?

Most of the direct sales companies have a ton of training and coaching to help you figure out where to find your clients. Chances are, you already know how to do all those things, but still are finding it hard to just get started again. It’s time to get outside of your inner circle of friends, but that also means getting out of your comfort zone. And that can be a little tough, since it means facing rejection, etc. But it’s also where all the possibilities for growing your business are!

Here are four easy steps you can take to finding more clients and growing your business:

1) Make sure you know who your target market is. You need to know exactly who your customers will be, where they shop, what they buy, what they read, what’s most important and most challenging for them, etc. Is your product or service something that mothers of young children would buy? Or is it something that would benefit professionals who have recently been laid off or down-sized? By clarifying who your ideal clients are, you’ll be better able to determine the next step: how to reach them.

2) Get in front of those potential customers–this can be asking friends/family for introductions to others, or attending a conference/tradeshow/event (like International Women’s Conference, a job fair, etc.) where your target audience might be, or joining groups that your target audience is a part of (professional networking groups like Chambers of Commerce, online groups like facebook or LinkedIn, playgroups, health clubs, whatever) so you can get exposure to these people and build trust and rapport with them. And when you’re in these situations, ASK FOR THE BUSINESS! “Do you know anyone who might be willing to host a party…?” or “Can you think of someone who could benefit from …(your offering here)…?” Yes, this approach takes time, but your business development is a continual process and building your network will yield the results you want. People love to buy from people they like, know, and trust.

3) Find a friend, colleague, buddy or a coach to support you in your business. If you’re doing it all alone, chances are you have little support and less accountability with regards to achieving the results you want. When you’re pushing yourself to go beyond what’s already comfortable and familiar to you, it makes sense to get some support so you don’t get overwhelmed and give up. If you can partner with someone who knows your goals and the two of you can support each other, it makes getting out there and doing the tough stuff so much easier!

4) Find an ally. For instance, if you’re a yoga instructor looking to expand your client base, you might find your next 20 clients by partnering with a wellness facility, an organic farm co-op, a health and nutrition store, or a fitness center. This doesn’t have to be any “formal” business partnership. Request an introduction to the manager/owner of the organization, set up an informational interview, and discuss the benefits you could both receive from referring clients back and forth to each other. Consider offering a discount or a bonus to clients that come from this alliance.

Are you trying to find new clients? Tell us your strategy. What was the best source of new clients you found?

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