Business Owners Toolbox Blog Discussions and articles to help the small business owner solve the challenges they face as they grow their business.

August 13, 2012

Using a Business Coach or Life Coach

Question from Amanda Carter, on LinkedIn. Have you ever sought the assistance of a Business or Life Coach?

My answer. I’m in the coaching and consulting business, but even so, I have used a variety of coaches. For example:

Business owner round tables. First, my business is leading groups of 10 business owners who act as informal advisers for each other. I have belonged to one of these groups led by another. Getting feedback and accountability from hard-headed biz owners each month is invaluable.

Even though I lead these groups for others, I need one for my own business just as much as anyone else.

Mastermind groups. Secondly, I have belonged to informal mastermind groups. Right now, five consultants and I have a “social media acceleration group” which meets virtually each month to help each other master various aspects of social media. We’ve helped each other with Twitter, Facebook, blogging, webinars, ebooks, video clips, etc. We stay focused on just these issues.

Accountability partners. I’ve had accountability buddies, where we help each other do something tough. Most recently, we’ve both been completing ebooks and getting them published. Knowing I’ve promised her to have the next section completed by Tuesday keeps me on it.

Writing coach. Finally, when I was writing a book, I hired a writing coach. She helped keep me on schedule, but also gave feedback on arrangement of material, etc.

Life coach. I’ve never had a life coach per se, because I’ve never had uncertainty about my life goals or how to pursue them. I have three lifetimes of things to do. My issue is getting things completed.

Why do I use coaches? I’m a collaborator, and collaboration is my catalyst to creativity. I work much more effectively by talking things out than by working away by myself all the time.

Don’t be the Lone Ranger. Small business owners get stuck in this trap of not having anybody to talk to about challenges in their business. If you work isolated, you make dumb and expensive mistakes.

January 20, 2011

New Year’s Resolutions? Useless!

Filed under: Social media — Tags: , , , , — Mike Van Horn @ 12:45 pm

Inspired by Rochelle Moulton’s post on this topic

Resolution . . . Practically useless
Resolution plus Action Plan . . . Useful, maybe
Resolution plus Action Plan plus Support and Accountability . . . Now we’re talking real results!

I find that 80% of the business owners I work with make their goals. That’s because they take the time to set a practical plan, and they work together to keep each other on track.

Part of my 2011 resolution is to blog at least twice a week. Not just blogging for the heck of it, but as part of a strategy to build visibility and interaction.

I haven’t kept to this before, as you can tell. So I’m making a public declaration, and I have two levels of accountability:

— My wife BJ, who’s in the business with me, and who also lets writing deadlines slide. If this doesn’t break up our marriage, maybe we’ll instill some writing discipline in each other.

— I hold weekly problem-solving and goal-setting meetings with fellow consultant Janet Tokerud, who has several technology blogs and sets a good example for me.

I’ll be saying more about implementing the various parts of my “visibility and interaction” strategy in my twice-weekly blogs.

Powered by WordPress