How to Become a Business Coach

Successful Planning Tips for Business Coaches

By on March 1, 2018

There’s an old saying I love: “If you fail to plan…you plan to fail.” And this is truer in business coaching than anywhere else. So how can you be sure your plan will succeed? By following these three simple planning tips for business coaches.

After all, the more specific and focused you are in your head and on paper, the more specific and focused your outcome will be.

That’s why I believe in setting VERY aggressive sales goals if you want to really achieve amazing results in business.

And I’m living proof. Over the 5 year period I owned my business coaching firm, I achieved an average yearly growth rate of 140%.

So, what’s the secret? I use three simple, but very powerful techniques to set and achieve aggressive sales goals:

1. Create or Refresh Your Vision Book Annually

This is the most powerful idealization and visualization process I’ve ever used. The idea is to breathe life and structure into your loftiest goals and deepest dreams.

Here’s how it works.

Decide which aspects of your life are most critical to you–both personal and professional. For me, this includes categories such as: spiritual, marriage, family, church, financial, business, fitness, growth, hobbies, and social.

Then, ask yourself this question: “Where do I want to be in one year in each of these areas?”

After you’ve answered the question, in PowerPoint, create at least one or two slides illustrating your vision for each of the major areas of your life.

Each slide should have a picture or some other graphical representation of what you hope to accomplish in a year’s time, along with a verbal description of your goal.

Then, let the book become an ongoing source of inspiration.

Review it weekly or even more often–whenever you need a boost.

The idea is to help you remember WHY you’re working so hard and WHAT you’re working toward.

But how is this related to your business coaching practice?

Well, achieving the vision for these different areas of your life takes cash flow, right?

Suddenly, you realize that success in business is about more than just paying the bills. It’s about living your dreams. And there’s nothing more motivating than that.

Suddenly, you realize that success in business is about more than just paying the bills. It’s about living your dreams. And there’s nothing more motivating than that.

2. Create an Optimistic/Pessimistic Forecast that’s Aggressive Enough to Fund Your Vision Book Goals

Most people I’ve met consistently under-perform their forecasts. Not only is this demoralizing, but it creates a real credibility problem when it’s time to report back to stakeholders in your business (such as your spouse!) or to go through a round of capital-raising.

Obviously, it feels much better to outperform your projections…but if you’re always outperforming your projections, you’re not really stretching yourself!

So how do you set goals that challenge you WITHOUT undermining your credibility in your own eyes or the eyes of your stakeholders?

Develop an optimistic and pessimistic forecast.

The optimistic forecast should be a serious stretch for you, so much that if you achieve even half of it you’re delighted!

All of your visualizing, strategizing, and thinking should be focused on achieving this optimistic forecast.

Most importantly, your daily and weekly activity plan should reflect the effort required to hit this forecast!

The second forecast should be a pessimistic one. If everything goes wrong, what will you do to survive? Your expense budget and capitalization model should reflect this scenario.

Have you caught on yet?

The trick is to market, sell, and serve clients with the intention of hitting your optimistic budget–and manage your cash and expenses as if you can count only on the pessimistic view!

My experience using this technique is that I almost always end up somewhere in the middle, and I’m usually very happy with that!

3. Develop a Daily and Weekly Activity Plan

This is where most people drop the ball.

You can have an awesomely inspiring vision for your coming year and a great optimistic/pessimistic forecast that theoretically drives your activity while keeping you disciplined in the area of cash management.

However, if you don’t translate your aggressive sales and revenue targets into a daily and weekly activity plan, you’ll find that you simply won’t do the activity required to hit your targets. You’ve got to be specific!

Ask yourself: How many sales must I make to hit my revenue goal this month and this week? How many sales meetings will it take to hit that number? How many hours do I have to spend on the phone in order to arrange those sales meetings?

You have to make absolutely sure that every day when you sit down at your desk, you know EXACTLY what level of activity you need to produce that day in order to deliver your number.

Failure to pay attention to this activity plan on a daily and weekly basis is the best way to miss your forecast.

On the other hand, if you deliver the requisite amount of activity to hit your optimistic budget each and every day, you’re likely to end up pretty close to your target and your vision will become a reality!

For more great business coach training like this, check out our FREE ebook, Secrets of a Business Coaching Rock Star!

Eric Dombach

About Eric Dombach

Eric Dombach is the Founder of Coaches’ Coach. In 2001, he founded a business coaching firm that, by 2005, was generating more than $1 million USD in revenue, 23% operating profit, and average annual growth rate of 140% per year. In 2005, he sold the firm to 4 of his employees for $1 million U.S. dollars, generating a return on capital of more than 800%. Since then he has trained more than 1,300 independent and franchise business coaches in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, and Australasian markets.

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