Real change takes time, but when you’re working with a client to improve their business the likelihood is they want to see tangible results as soon as possible to ascertain whether their investment in a coach or mentor is paying off.
Here are five ways you can keep your clients on track to make the progress they desire.
Effective coaching is all about communication and it’s a two-way street. In the first few meetings you have to gain a client’s trust and work to see the big picture, and then it’s about getting down to the job at hand.
By encouraging regular meetings on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis, your presence is becoming a trusted and reliable factor in their already busy business lives. These sessions, whether by phone or in person, work to build a relationship, but also allow for progress to be discussed and strategies to be altered when required.
The likelihood is every session will end with items the coach and the mentor may need to attend to, like reading through a business plan or the business owner writing down their goals.
How soon these matters are dealt with will affect how quickly progress can be made, so set due dates for when you’ll get back to them or they need to provide information to you.
Coaching and business is all about setting and then meeting goals, so the initial sessions with a client should be about establishing what the business owner hopes to achieve and the timeframe in which progress is feasible.
From the goals, strategies are created. Getting to the action component of coaching as quickly as possible is essential to making progress. This means the first few weeks of the coaching process are all about obtaining the information necessary to begin creating the required strategies, and then devising them, including the way in which they should be enacted.
Once the strategies are in place, it is essentially down to the business owner to utilise them, while your role becomes one of charting progress and gauging results through regular meetings and communication. Then, together, you can work to hone methods and enact further ways to make the progress and meet the goals the business owner hopes to achieve.
The final word
The major art of coaching is to keep the impetus rolling so the client is steadily improving and seeing real results. This way you establish a working relationship that continuously benefits you both over the years ahead.