10 Ways To Coach Entrepreneurs - SACAP
Management & Leadership

10 Ways to Coach Entrepreneurs

Jun 13, 2023
Ways to Coach Entrepreneurs
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Business coaches coach entrepreneurs. For many, they are a lifeline for addressing crucial issues owner-managers face. Including personal growth and development, working relationships and specific business challenges. They can be a valuable sounding board and confident when you need to unpack sensitive issues or make big decisions. Here are 10 ways that a Business Coach can make a difference to you and your business.

1. The Unknown is the Place to Learn

Everyone lives on the frontier of the known and unknown. However, facing the unknown is an entirely different encounter for those who don’t have conventional jobs. It’s an unfiltered experience and the more its encountered, the greater it grows. This can be an exhilarating reality or one that brings fear and trepidation. Being overwhelmed can often get in the way of a great response to the perennial entrepreneurial question: What do I need to do next?

Coaches can assist entrepreneurs to develop a welcoming relationship with the unknown. And by being comfortable operating on the frontier of the unknown you can grow continually. This is a great place to be because the inherent learning in entrepreneurship contributes to the success of one’s enterprise.

2. Developing an Entrepreneurial Identity

There is a difference between finding one’s purpose in life and developing a healthy entrepreneurial identity.  An entrepreneurial identity is one which listens to the market, and thoroughly tests and measures development. Then is able to reveal in much wiser answers however tough they may be to process. However, the danger with forging ahead with your own business is that it becomes an expression of what you stand for. And thus, a common perception that develops is that a business idea is the reason an entrepreneur was born for. It’s the life contribution they are “written” to make. This is a precarious position to find oneself in, as it often prevents change when it’s needed. As well as reformulating direction when an enterprise fails to gain traction.

Coaches can assist entrepreneurs to view their first and subsequent businesses as a pilgrimage of their entrepreneurial identity. This allows for only a healthy attachment to their business and avoids the perils of an identity too tightly wrapped up in an idea.

3. Your Biggest Asset is You

It’s easy to forget that building up our enterprise depends a lot on our physical health. The reality is that how healthy we are determines how much energy we have to work. Thus, no matter how brilliant your business concept is, if you don’t look after yourself, you could be setting yourself up to fall short or fail.

Coaches can assist entrepreneurs to draw the link between their personal energy and their ability to deliver great value. This is accomplished by encouraging permission for self-care with an indirect link to delivering value. Thereby allowing the entrepreneur to allow appropriate time and resources to be invested in their own self-care.

4. Realistic Reading of the Market

Most businesses start with an idea of what might be valuable to the market. Often, it’s something the creator would love to see being adopted into the world. And therefore, something we believe is needed by customers. What is sometimes humbling to hear, is that happy customers buy what they love, not what we, creators, love. It’s easy to draw enthusiasm and move to action from things we love. However, the deeper energy that comes from serving the needs of others can be far more fulfilling.

“Focus your business on what’s needed and wanted.”

Coaches can assist entrepreneurs to build a relationship with the market. This is how entrepreneurs can grow in their knowledge of the customers they want to serve. Thus, a coach can help ensure that the voice of the customer is always at the forefront of their focus.

5. The Shadow – Your Hidden Self

The shadow is that part of our personality that we invest a lot of unconscious effort into denying as being part of ourselves. Many people don’t know about our shadow because, by definition, we can’t see it. However, with some techniques, we can. And thereby save relationships and misspent energy.

One of the discovery mechanisms is to consider what we would most like to be known for in the world. For example, if you want to be known for being conscientious and thereby encourage others to be the same. Then unbeknown to yourself, you would often be putting energy into avoiding being seen as careless. Which is what you perceive as the opposite of being conscientious. Then instead of encouraging others to be more conscientious, they encounter an intense fanaticism for perfection which could be off-putting.

Coaches can assist entrepreneurs by helping them to understand that their primary challenge may not be person B or C. Instead, it might just be person A, themselves. While this is tough to hear, to begin with, it is also incredibly empowering. It puts the problem within the control of person A, rather than the often-fruitless endeavour of trying to change someone else.

6. Boundaries

One of the most surprising things about running a business is how intimidating the freedom of no boundaries can be. Remember Brooks, from The Shawshank Redemption, who was unable to operate in the world after many years of being institutionalised? Most of our lives have been formulated. We go to school, find a career, qualify, and then get a job. All of which have set timeframes and places to do known things.

A lack of awareness, when encountering this new realm of freedom, can often result in overwork. This is often at the expense of our important relationships as well as our own personal growth. It’s been said that, since we’re essentially social beings, our well-being is directly correlated to the quality of our relationships.

“Boundaries help to create a balance.”

Coaches can assist by inquiring about the status of each of the most important relationships in our lives. Including the relationship with ourselves and how we are looking after ourselves. The motivation to keep the quality high provides the energy necessary to set better boundaries.

7. You are Not Alone

There is truth in the thinking that nobody like you has ever existed and will never exist. Thus, your business is incredibly unique as a result. But this thinking can have a disastrous by-product: that there isn’t anybody else you can learn from. There is no shame in copying! It might at first feel like we’re ruining the surprise. However, if we don’t learn from businesses with market-proven elements, we’re ultimately doing a disservice to our own customers.

“Build on other’s successful examples.”

Coaches can assist by enquiring who the top three people or businesses are that their client’s business is learning from. Ideally, they’ll help to narrow their client’s inspiration to people and businesses that have 10 times their revenue. A hundred times or more can be inspirational but often is less practical. Helping clients to hold the paradox of being entirely unique while also being perfectly insignificant can assist in fostering success.

8. Personality Type

The essential point here is that it really matters that it is you that is pursuing a potential market opportunity. Warren Buffett wouldn’t have done well as a TV show host. And Oprah Winfrey most likely would have failed as a fund manager. Their essential personalities were a critical ingredient in where they chose to focus their efforts in the world.

There is no majorly successful entrepreneur who hasn’t gone the route of discovering and establishing their own personal niche. Then in doing this, followed up their discovery by accumulating time and experience to master their niche. Most people believe that being well-rounded is a virtue. However, it can also be a safety net that prevents us from reaching our full potential.

One of the main blockers that prevent us from accessing our natural genius is being unwilling to admit that we can’t do it all. Coaches can assist in being up-to-date in the nuances of healthily accessing the power of personality. As well as understanding how our unique personalities can be a value-adding application in our client’s life.

9. Purpose

Asking yourself what your purpose is can be a double-edged sword. It can create the feeling of being either too grandiose or too limiting. This is because it’s often approached with a binary mindset – either I have a purpose or I don’t. The reality is some days we feel like we have more purpose than other days. The trick is to allow the question of “what is purposeful to me” to breathe its way through our life. Thereby having the effect of nurturing our wellspring of life energy. Thus, allowing purposefulness to create the life energy that grows phenomenal levels of resilience, creativity, willingness to learn and generosity. Essentially, all the wonderful character traits that many successful people possess.

Coaches can assist here by keeping the “what is purpose to me” question alive in the conversation. Many entrepreneurs are “doers” and don’t have time for esoteric niceties. And, reminding the client that it isn’t an overnight process can be very helpful while they establish their success.

10. Future Orientation

The root of the word entrepreneur is entreprendre, which means “to undertake”. The entrepreneur essentially promises something in the future, different to what exists right now. Entrepreneurs design and create the future. Many of us have had our futures set for us by parents, institutions and influential people.

The day an entrepreneur sets a destination and maps a course to that destination is an important milestone. The next step is learning that along the way they can either set destinations better or more effectively chart their course. When this happens, they have become true to entreprendre.

Coaches can assist by encouraging a relationship with the future that involves designing it. This allows the entrepreneur to get really specific about what they can control. As well as what they can’t in order to make future planning less like setting a list for Santa Claus.

Help Others to Steer their Course

Do you have a burning desire to assist others to find their niche and excelling? Then consider studying coaching course. SACAP offers a wide range of ICF accredited and COMENSA approved coaching courses through our Management and Leadership Faculty. These are available in full-time, part-time and distance learning options. For more information contact us today and set up an appointment with an admissions officer.

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