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The Top 4 Success Tips From 50 Successful Entrepreneurs at The Thought Leaders Business Summit…

Hey there! I just wanted to pop in real quick. I’m actually at “The Thought Leader Business Summit”. It’s one of the masterminds that I attend. You guys know me – you never leave home with a mastermind – and this is one that I’ve been coming to, I think, for about the past seven years.

Every April, about 50 of us thought leaders in the industry come together to look at the industry, to look at our businesses, to brainstorm for hotseat coaching, to challenge each other, to celebrate, just all of that stuff. And it just started today. So I wanted to give you the top four takeaways from the 50 successful entrepreneurs that have been in this room. And the entrepreneurs in this room, they range anywhere from… you have to have at least a million dollar business to be in the room. Some of them go up to multi millions. One guy that we heard from today started with
his company when it was $1,000,000 and has grown it to a hundred million dollars. And I want to share a tip from him.

The first thing that we started with today is “what are you playing this game for?” We continuously ask ourselves that on a regular basis. And we’re always asking ourselves “how can I, while I’m doing the work that I love, and getting paid generously to do so, how can I increase the quality of my life?” Always check in with your “why”. It’s your beacon. The “why” for creating the impact, the “why”… maybe your “why” is time freedom, maybe it’s money freedom, maybe it’s to create a legacy, maybe it’s just to play a bigger game – whatever your “why” is for doing what you’re doing, make sure you know how to articulate it and always ask yourself “why am I playing this game, and how can I increase my quality of life while I do it?”

So that’s how we kicked the day off to get us in the mindset, and then we heard from a global leader, Sean Stephenson, a dear friend of mine. And he shared and he spoke on the “human connection formula”. And he talked to us about really paying attention whether you’re speaking at events to your clients, whether you work with your clients one on one, whether you do it on the phone, or inperson, or webinars, or online, or however you connect with your clients and contacts, and make sure that you are paying attention to creating the human connection. Our world has been saturated by technology and getting impersonal and detached. And now this trend is moving, how can you create that human connection?

And I just want to share three notes that I took from what he shared. How can you unify the people that you like, your community, your tribe? How can you unify them? How can you give them permission to go, for it for however you’re serving and supporting them? And then, how can you also create rapport and build that know-like trust factor? As you do that, you’re able to create – in
creating that know-like and trust factor – you’re able to serve and support them in bigger ways, to help them get the results that they’re looking for.

And then we heard from Reed Tracy, another dear friend. He and I are actually in another Master Mind together. He’s the CEO of “Hay House”, the biggest publishing company in our industry. And he shared with us his journey from taking the company from 1 million dollars to a hundred million dollars. And there was so much in his presentation, but one of the Nuggets that he said was so important that you have to pay attention to, as you’re building your business, growing your business and scaling your business – and I don’t care if you want to take your business to 100 million, maybe you want to go to 10 million, maybe you want to go to 1 million, maybe you’d like to go to a hundred thousand, heck maybe you’d like to hit 50 thousand – whatever that is for you, the thing that he shared that really stood out was: create a container for your time and be very mindful of it. Be very conscious of how you spend your time, what you include in your time, be very diligent in that and you’ll map your success much faster than if you just kind of leave it up to chance.

And then the last thing: I got to be in a panel. I was so excited I got to be on a panel with myself and two other colleagues of mine and good friends, Lisa Charney, and Marisa Murgatroyd. And the three of us talked about creating great client experiences. And there’s three things that you have to pay attention to.

What we called the “stick rate”: like as soon as somebody says “yes” to working with you. That moment that they say “yes” is when everything just begins for you. And in that moment that you want them to stick as a client. So what can you pay attention to as soon as they say “yes”, what can you do in the first hour after them saying “yes” to really get them engaged in creating momentum, and having a lot of fun, and validating their decision, that they just invested in themselves? Once you have them stick as a client, then you want to pay attention, and put all of your attention and resources on making sure they get the results that they want, and working with you. And you have to pay attention to whether you work with somebody just one time, and that’s it whether you have a … maybe it’s just you spend the day with them, maybe you have a coaching program and you work together for six weeks or six months, or maybe it’s a year-long program that you offer, whatever it is – how can you pay attention to the entire client journey to ensure and provide structure and fun, to make sure they’re getting quick wins, consistent wins throughout the whole experience?

And then the final thing is retention: how do you retain your clients, because it costs a lot more money to get new clients than it does to keep the old ones. And so, what can you do to create
retention and keep people engaged? And one of the things that we do in our business is: we create anticipation. We like to, whenever we’re offering something to our clients, rather than just giving them the template, or the module, or the lesson, or the training, we like to, in advance, create a little anticipation, tease them a little bit to build up the excitement for what we’re about to deliver. And creating that anticipation, they’re always looking forward to the “what’s next”. And in the “what’s next” – that’s when they stay longer to look forward to what’s coming. So how can you pay attention to the stick, how can you pay attention to creating results with your clients, and how can you pay attention to retaining them and engaging them over the long haul?

So that’s just a little bit from our day today. We’re actually have a quick break, and then we’re heading out to a surprise. I have no idea what it is, but we were just told to dress up like you’re going to the Oscars,. And we’re gonna have dinner together, and that’s one of the things that I love about these masterminds. Is that while there’s a lot of learning that happens in the room, it’s all of the connections that happen at lunch, in the lounge, at dinner, in between, going to the airport – that’s where a lot of amazing ideas begin to happen. And so make sure that whenever you’re going to masterminds, whenever you’re going to networking events, whether they’re local in your community or big events once a year, make sure that not only are you at the event itself, but the in-between times where a lot of the magic happens.

I got to go get ready. I’m gonna find out what this surprises. I’ll fill you in tomorrow with some more tips and what happened tonight.

Posted in: Professional Development, StartUp Coach, The Coaching Lifestyle Podcast

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How a successful coach entrepreneur balances pleasure and business

Hey there! I’m actually here in Laguna Beach – you can kind of see the cove there, there’s some of the houses behind me – and I just wanted to share a quick little tip about how you can create and balance business and pleasure. It’s one of my favorite things to do.

You see, I’m out here for a mastermind – you all know that about me; there’s something you never leave home without, a mastermind – and so I’m here with about 50 colleagues over the next several days and we’re gonna be brainstorming on our business, talking about visions, and trends, and innovations, and doing hotseat coaching, and working on our challenges, and really helping to create and evolve our own businesses.

And I flew out here a day early, I’ve been whale watching, and over the last several hours I’ve gone out with six of my colleagues who are also good friends and we’ve been out there and we’ve been watching whales, we’ve seen a couple whales, we saw some sea lions and a bunch of dolphins, and this is how we have spent our day, so that we can fill ourselves up. We can connect, create relationships and bond, and so I had to tack on an extra day and it’s totally worth it.

I’ve done that before, you know. It’s been four months, I was in Park City, did the same thing. Then when on the Africa trip, did the same thing there. I’m now here in Laguna Beach, and I continue to mix business and pleasure just to create an extraordinary business, and an extraordinary life.

So how are you combining business and pleasure to create the business beyond your wildest dreams, and live the life beyond your wildest dreams? Type that below. I want to hear your secret tips too!

Posted in: Professional Development, StartUp Coach, The Coaching Lifestyle Podcast

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Post Lifestyle LIVE Success Interview Michelle Lockhart

This coach just brought on 30-40 new clients implementing what she learned at #LifestyleLIVE! (and more are already signing up as well)

Listen here at exactly how she did it!

My favorite frame in this conversation with Michelle was towards 18 minutes into the interview when she talks about how this is the first time she honestly feels like she can do this thing called her business… XO

Have you ever doubted if you can do this?

Have you ever struggled with the gremlins and villains that get the best of you and you start wondering “am I really cut out for this?” or “Is this really possible?”

If so… check out exactly what Michelle Lockhart did to turn her doubts into confidence and start scaling her business! And how you can too!

Or if you just want to hear how, in less than 1 week’s time Michelle went from working with a few clients and feeling doubtful to landing 30+ clients and more are on their way!

Great job Michelle! Super proud of you and so excited to share in this celebration with you!!!

Michelle: Hello.

Melinda: Hello. How are you?

Michelle: I’m doing good. Doing really good.

Melinda: It’s good to see you again. Did you have a good weekend?

Michelle: Oh yeah, great weekend. Busy. I’ve got so much to do now. I thought I had a lot to do before I got clients.

Melinda: And then all the clients come, my goodness!

Michelle: And it’s like oh, now I have to do something?

Melinda: That a fun problem to have.

Michelle: Yeah, it is. It’s great. It really is.

Melinda: I know you are busy and I know you’ve got a lot going on but I thank you for popping on here real quick with me. When Jackie shared with me what all of you have going on and when we talked last week I was like wow! Like I was just thinking about the song that we played, This Girl Is On Fire, at the event, and I was like, she is living that song right now.

Michelle: Yeah, that’s been crazy. It’s been great.

Melinda: I love it. I just want to dive right in and I just want to kind of set context. Before Lifestyle Live and before all this fun-ness started happening with the clients and everything, what was it before? What was it like before with getting clients or having clients? Help me understand where you were.

Michelle: Okay. Before I went to Lifestyle Live I started in about September and I was like in this complete—I was the Oliver Overwhelm, totally. I had all these ideas and all of this stuff that I wanted to do. In my head I knew what I wanted to do and then I would talk to people and they’d say, so tell me what it is you do and I’d be like blah, blah.

I know what I want to do. I can’t really explain. And they’d say, what do you need to do next? I have no idea. I just have this idea of where I want to be in the future. I had about five or six individual clients that I was coaching and I was doing really well with them and they were enjoying it and we were having a lot of success.

But I was having a hard time with processing how do I put this all together? And then I found Coaches Console and that was really helpful to be able to organize everything and be able to shoot things out to people and that kind of thing but I wasn’t using it for any advertising or anything like that. And then I saw the Lifestyle Live and I’m like that is totally what I need.

And so as soon as I got to Lifestyle Live I was like, okay, they are going to show me how to use Coaches Console. That’s what I thought it was going to be. And then I got there and I’m like, oh my gosh, this is so much better, so much better. So I listened to everything, I wrote everything in my notebook. I took notes all over the place.

When I got on the plane to come home I went through my notebook and I wrote out, okay this is my plan and these are my goals. Then I took the next two weeks and I got a great big notebook, great, big huge sheets of paper and I wrote out my five steps and I made columns and I’m like what is the process for each of these steps?

Melinda: Oh, the five steps like when I was on stage, like the client success path? Those are the five steps?

Michelle: Right, the success path, yeah.

Melinda: Oh okay so like from Pain Island, get off of Pain Island onto Pleasure Island.

Michelle: I had done that on the plane. I did like the Pain Island on the plane and the Pleasure Island. And so I did this big model and the columns I did like what’s the process, and then what do I need to facilitate this process? What do I need to get done, and what’s the timeframe for me and what’s the timeframe for the client, and then how much does that cost me? How much does this step cost me?

Melinda: To help the client when they take this first step, to support them, to get that experience? So you kind of reverse engineered everything that needed to be behind that person taking that step.

Michelle: Right, exactly.

Melinda: Okay, wow!

Michelle: And then I had had a couple of people that had talked to me and were interested but I couldn’t articulate what it was that I did so they are just like, oh okay. So I’m like, okay, I’ve got this. I’ve got it in my head. I’ve got it on paper. I know what I’m doing now. I just got on the phone and just started calling all of these contacts and I’m like I know what I’m doing now.

Melinda: Wow! So before people would say what do you do and you kind of alluded to this blah, blah just kind of, who knows what comes off of your mouth? It’s like you can hear yourself thinking what you want to say. It’s like when I sing. Like in my head I’m a great singer. When I actually sing I’m like, oh, that’s not exactly what that was. That didn’t work so well.

Michelle: Right, and I think most of it was because I didn’t have it organized in my head. I had the end. What I wanted to take my clients to to the end but I didn’t have any process to get there, and I would tend to go in and I’m like, I can do this, and this and this and like I said, I was the boat and I was sinking it. I was the Titanic and the people were riding away in the life raft, you know?

Melinda: Get me out of here!

Michelle: I was just verbalizing everything that I was going to do. Then it was like now I’m focusing on you. This is what will happen for you. Instead of what I’m doing, this is what you will do and what your company will do.

So when I went in I thought I was going in and that we were just going to be talking to the owner of the business but instead he brought all the employees in so this presentation was in front of all the employees that he wanted to sign up for the program.

Melinda: And this business owner is that what you said you started making a lot of calls and that was one of the business owners. He was already on your contact list and you picked up the phone, you started calling, he’s one of them, he’s like yeah, let’s meet. So you thought you are meeting with him.

Michelle: But when I started articulating to him what it was that I could do for him, he’s like oh yeah, let’s meet.

Melinda: Isn’t that interesting? It’s like oh. It’s also interesting you talked about being an Oliver Overwhelm, one of the villains that we talked about. While you are talking about the boat and it’s like, here is what I can do for you, it’s kind of like that roleplay that we did at the event where Kate was like, oh my gosh, I can do this, and then I can do this.

And then I can help you with this and then I’ve got this you can do and it was like what? And so now all of a sudden we are making them be overwhelmed, so like you said, they are driving away on the life boats, they are like get me out of here. This girl is crazy. And our enthusiasm is like a fire hydrant, fire hose.

Michelle: Exactly.

Melinda: So now you’ve articulated here are the Pain Island challenges here are the Pleasure Island results, which you knew this all the way but what made the difference is that client success path. It’s like, here’s the overarching steps, and then the reverse for me.

Michelle: Right and getting that clear for me.

Melinda: Yeah, so keep talking about that process. So you got that big notepad.

Michelle: I got the big chart, yeah.

Melinda: Yeah, and frame that. Take that and frame it. Like right now, I don’t know if you can see up there.

Michelle: Oh yeah, your napkin.

Melinda: Yeah, my napkin. Like those monumental things, frame those and keep them because it reminds you of what’s happening right now so you never forget it.

Michelle: Right.

Melinda: Okay, so talk more about that, the big notebook and what you organized.

Michelle: So as I wrote it down, I put down all the processes, all the things that I wanted the client to go through in that section and I named each of the steps. Now I’m working on typing up like a weekly type of what kinds of things should I expect my clients to be going through each week?

Mine is nutrition and I take them through diet change and we move them through into it and a completely different lifestyle of eating and so there is the mindset that has to happen, changing mindset, changing behaviors and all of that.

And so once I got that down now I’m able to take each individual part and actually put it into a process of its own so it’s now fanning out. So when I went to the presentation and I addressed their pain and I addressed their pleasure, and they had everybody who was in the room sign up with me.

Melinda: And how many people was that Michele?

Michelle: I haven’t gotten all their information yet but I’m thinking they are between 35 and 40.

Melinda: Wow! So you picked up the phone, you think you are having a meeting with one guy and lo and behold now he’s like no, no, no, you are going to be coaching these 35 to 40, somewhere in there people.

Michelle: Right.

Melinda: And you know what’s interesting is you were talking at the event one of the things that you wanted to know more how to do was how to scale. Like how do I scale this? Like I’ve got a few clients here and there, but how do I scale this? And what I love when I heard this information I was like oh my gosh, I have got to talk to her is that clarity and that confidence. The scaling was just an effortless byproduct, it just happened.

Michelle: Right. Yeah, and that was on Thursday and Friday. Another one of them that I called, I went in to talk to him and he’s hired me as well. So he’s hired me for himself and he wants me put together an executive package for all of the VPs and the presidents of his company and he’s talking to me about putting together a kids’ camp where we do an executive program and those executives help pay for kids.

Melinda: Oh my gosh!

Michelle: So I woke up in the middle of the night and I’m like I have this idea and I had to come down and write down this whole, so I’ve got him a whole outline for his kids camp for this summer.

Melinda: And now it’s the same process.

Michelle: I did the exact same thing.

Melinda: Pain Island, Pleasure Island, client success path, what are the overarching steps and then reverse engineer it.

Michelle: Exactly and he told me exactly what he wants these kids to learn and he’s like put it into a process and we’ll get back together next week.

Melinda: Hi five girl, hi five. That is awesome. Well I am really glad that you showed up at Lifestyle Live.

Michelle: Oh, me too. It’s like game changer, total game changer.

Melinda: Yeah and I said this at the event, there is only so much that I can do. I can show you information. I can give you handouts, I can walk you through scenarios but you have to do the work, and that’s what I really love about you. I mean you, right out of the gate you are on the plane coming home and you are like, okay, we are not messing around, we are doing this.

And you did the work that was necessarily to do and look, just in less than a week, in a week, this has happened and that is so awesome. I wanted to share, when I called you last week and I was like I have got to talk to her, this is so cool I got off the phone and I thought of something that I wanted to share with you.

You certainly don’t need me to share this because what you’ve got going on is working really well and when I map out that client success path here is something that I take myself through to help. It’s like okay, here is the first step. Now let’s detail everything out. Here is the second step, let’s detail everything out.

One of the things that I ask myself is and like I’ve got this space in my office where there is just an open area. Because if you remember when I was on stage I would start at Pleasure Island then I was like okay, let’s take the first step. And I would get in my body as if I was those clients and I’d be like, let’s be them.

And so I always ask in that first step, what are they thinking, what are they feeling, what are they saying? Like what kind of words are coming out of their mouths? What are the actions that they are doing? And so I try to just put myself in their shoes thinking, saying, feeling, doing, and sometimes I’ll even ask, what kind of resources are they using or not using?

When I ask that question it helps flush those details out a little bit more. And really what it helps me is to identify potential pitfalls that might show up along the way and it’s like oh wait, in step three, this is going to start happening. So what can we do to make sure they keep momentum going or what can I provide?

Is there a resource I can provide or is there a handout I can create or an exercise I can take them through to keep the momentum going? I just wanted to share that with you. It sounds like in the detailing like you are doing a lot of that already but that helps me to fine tune.

It’s like what we do in bootcamp and for the accelerators and with my own clients. It fills these small little gaps. And some of it you may not know until you get through it and you are like oh, good to know, look at this pattern that’s showing up and then you can add it to your big notepad.

Michelle: One of the other things that was huge for me at Lifestyle Live was that I kept feeling like I can’t roll anything out until it is perfected and that research piece to me was just eye opening to be able to say all of this is just research and I just can go into it and I will write down what works, write down what doesn’t work, change what didn’t work and make it into something that’s going to work.

That thought of this is never a done product. This is never a done deal. We are going to continually change it. I’m going to continually change what I offer and how I offer it and how I work and to have that mindset instead of this one and done perfected thing that goes out into the world that was a huge mind shift for me too because I was working way too hard to make it perfect before I’d even tried it out.

Melinda: Right, yeah. And then once we have that aha it’s like well how can I even make it perfect? There is so much information I don’t have. Like we haven’t gone through the experience, so their actions, their experience hasn’t informed me but we usually can’t think that thought until we are on the other side of it.

But that’s why I love just envisioning ourselves as a researcher. We’ve got the white lab coats on, our little notebooks and it’s like okay. And that’s something that we do, so I’d encourage you to do this as well. Like you’ve got this project with these 35 to 40 people and I’m guessing it’s going to take some kind of timeframe that you are going to be with these people.

Michelle: Right, a year.

Melinda: Yeah, so a year. One of the things that we do with all of our projects whether it’s a small project or a big project before the project starts, we always schedule the debrief, right? The power is in the debrief. That’s where you get to really garner the research.

And so like this coming Wednesday we have our internal debrief with our whole team about Lifestyle Live and we are going to ask three questions; what worked really well, what didn’t work and then this is my favorite question, what will we do differently next time?

That keeps me in research mode because it’s easy to say what didn’t work and it can be easy to get stuck in, oh gosh, I failed or I let them down or who am I to think that like all those villains can start creeping in. But when you immediately go to what will I do differently, now you get back into research mode.

Michelle: Yeah, into that creative energy.

Melinda: Exactly. So if you are going to be with them a year you might even want to do a mid-point or every three or four months, quarterly. It’s like let’s research this together so that you are always putting together what you need and fine-tuning and the same with the kids camp.

Michelle: Right and I want to put this together so that I can replicate it and be able to move it to the next company and the next group.

Melinda: That is beautiful, and that’s what we did with bootcamp. We started Boot Camp because we were working with individual clients and we were doing the research and we were like wow, look at all these same patterns.

So then we were able to identify the client success path for a bootcamper and then instead of working with four or five or six people at a time, we started working with 30 people at a time. And then it’s like once we did that for a little bit and we fine-tuned it even more now we work with 100 or 200 or 400 people at a time in that same process.

And so now talk about scaling, once you have that process now it’s easy to bring more people into. And I love the confidence that you have it’s like oh my gosh. This is what I do. Here is actually what you do. Here is your challenge. Here is your result and here is the process, and they are like, please sign me up for that.

Michelle: Right. It was super easy. They were like, okay yeah, but that’s great.

Melinda: Yeah and now you are in total control because you can put your foot on the gas and be like all right, let’s work with more people or you can say, whoa! I’m good for now so you can let off the gas a little bit. And now you are in charge of the business you create and the lifestyle you create and it’s beautiful.

Michelle: I’m super excited. Super excited.

Melinda: Me too. I am so excited for you.

Michelle: And this is the first time that I really honestly felt like I can do this. Before it was this I hope I can do this. I think I can do this, I’ve got great ideas but I kept saying I’m not a businesswoman. I’m a nurse. I’m a coach. And now it’s like, I own a business and I happen to coach and be a nurse in my business.

And that makes a huge difference to own that. I’m a business owner and so I need to behave like a business owner when I’m in that mode and not be the coach who is like, well how do you feel about it?

But say here I am, on business this is what we are going to do, and then switch to coach when it’s time to coach. So that again, there was just so many moments through the whole couple of days that was just like, yes, I need that or yes I need that.

Melinda: Beautiful. Well I love how you took all those nuggets from the event, put it together and then in a very short time implemented what you got from the event and look at what’s already happening. And this is just the beginning.

Michelle: I am certain of that.

Melinda: Yes. Well, Michelle thank you for sharing your story. Thank you for popping in here. I think it’s going to be contagious. I know a lot of people and what you just said I know I can do this. I said that at the event, like that is really what stops most people is they start thinking they can’t do it.

Michelle: Right. That’s what was going on with me.

Melinda: You were experiencing the same thing and that’s what I see over and over. It’s not strategy. It’s not marketing. It’s they start believing they can’t do this which is why I was like, I’ve got to call her because this is awesome. So thank you for being that inspiration to yourself and to what I think is going to be so many people, and you have to keep us posted.

Michelle: Okay I will.

Melinda: Like with the kids retreat and with everything else and so share your celebrations with us regularly.

Michelle: Thank you. I appreciate you.

Melinda: Awesome. Thank you Michelle. We’ll talk soon. All right.

Michelle: Okay. Thanks. Bye bye.

Posted in: Professional Development, StartUp Coach, The Coaching Lifestyle Podcast

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The 3 CRITICAL questions every Successful Entrepreneur MUST ask themselves (and their team)

The 3 CRITICAL questions every Successful Entrepreneur MUST ask themselves (and their team) on a regular basis for continued growth and success…

Are YOU asking these questions?

Hey there. You know as successful entrepreneurs, as coaches running our own business, whatever it is the work you’re doing in this world, there are critical questions – three of them – that you must ask yourself almost every day. Probably weekly. Definitely several times a month.

Because – you see – as entrepreneurs, or when we have our own business, we are always working on different projects. Maybe your project is creating your list building funnel, so you can generate new leads. Maybe the project you’re focusing on is all the different ways you can mark it, and generate awareness, so you can find and attract those leads. Maybe your project is creating new content. Maybe your project is doing your first ever series of videos, or your first live event. Or maybe you’re launching a new program.

Whatever this project is that you’re working on, you must ask yourself these three questions. Because the power is in the debrief. I want you to like just to stamp that in your mind, maybe you have a post-it note that you put on your computer, or on your wall. Because the power is in the debrief.

We often focus on the preparation, the research, putting together the project, executing the project. And then once we’ve done it, we go to the next project. And then we go to the next project. And the power is in the debrief. So you should always ask yourself these three questions anytime you do any kind of project.

And you know I was just meeting with my team – we meet every Thursday. Back in the day when I first started it was just Kate and I, right? Two business partners, as Kate calls us: “two little beans on the org chart”. And it was just us, so we just had to ask ourselves these questions. Over the last 15 years we’ve grown and expanded an entire team to help us run, and continue to scale this business and this company. So we were just on this team meeting, and we have this program that we’re in the middle of delivering, and we are constantly in research mode. We’re always researching and we’re always asking these three questions.

Now the power is in the debrief after every project, but if you have an extended project that’s taking a longer timeframe, you can even ask these three questions in the mint of the project. And here’s the three questions:

The first question is: what’s working well? Like what’s really going well? Celebrate that, acknowledge it, like be outrageous with acknowledging it, give gratitude for it. Really look at what am I doing about that thing that’s going really well, and definitely do more of that. Wash, rinse, repeat. Keep that going.

The second question is: what’s not going so well? A lot of people would prefer to put their head in the sand and ignore that, because they may not know how to change it, or what to do about it. You may not know what to do about it, but simply asking the question “what’s not going well?”, by acknowledging that without having to have any solution in mind, you create this space for creativity resources and new awareness to start showing up in your world. So the second question is: what’s not going really well? You might list that out for your project.

And then the third question – and this is my favorite question: what will I do differently next time? It’s what my team and I we call it the “do differently” statement. And so in every project we’re always saying “oh. here’s what I’ll do differently”. And so now myself, and our team, we actually bring that idea to the rest of us. And I bring it to my coach, I bring it to my mastermind, we bring it to each other as a team, and we can brainstorm, and start looking at it from different angles.

So what will I do differently next time, based on my experience? Because everything being an entrepreneur, you’re always researching,: you take action, you research, you do differently; you celebrate what it is, you do differently. And you continue to grow. And when you look back over the last week, the last month, the last quarter, the last year, all of a sudden all those baby steps have added up and you’ve had monumental shifts and big change in your business.

So always ask yourself these three questions because the power is in the debrief. What project are you working on right now that you can pause and ask yourself these three questions? Or what
project did you just complete, and now you’re already in the next project, but you didn’t do the debrief? Make sure you give yourself time and space to do the debrief, and for any project – like for our launches, for our big promotions, when we had our live event – before that project ever started, we scheduled the debrief on our calendar. Make it be an integral part of your planning, and it’ll make for better growth in the long run.

Have fun with those three questions!

Posted in: Professional Development, StartUp Coach, The Coaching Lifestyle Podcast

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Why your understanding of your coaching business is wrong…

Hey, Melinda here. And this morning I just want to speak to why your understanding of your coaching business is just wrong.

You see, most coaches, it’s an inherent skill that you have to to help people, to create impact to coach and transform people’s lives – it’s a skill you’re born with, it just comes naturally. You use it in your your business that you had, or your job that you had, as an employee, maybe you bring those skills to your family, and it’s just what you do. And so you love doing this thing, and then the natural progression is “well if I love doing this thing, let’s start a business doing this thing”. And that’s where you are approaching this as what I call “the technician”: the doer, the person who is doing the coaching.

There is a big difference in being a great coach versus running a great coaching business. You must know that distinction in order to create success as an entrepreneur in your business. You see, coaching – that is just a third of the equation. There’s three things you must master when you are starting launching and growing your business:

You must master the skills of coaching : how you help people, the way you support them . You must hone and polish those inherent gifts that are are your zone of genius.

The second thing is you must master the marketing: marketing, selling, converting, enrolling. You must master those skills. A lot of us say we don’t like it, but when you really dig deep and look at marketing at its best, it’s just great coaching. Stop convincing; don’t manipulate; be of service to prospects before they become your client, to help them get clear on their next best steps for themselves. Marketing is just great coaching, so you have an advantage to master this second area.

And in the third area that you must master is the skills of business. You must understand you don’t have to be great at them, but you do have to understand what happens behind the scenes, what happens by the scenes to do marketing, to grow your list and find new leads; what has to happen behind the scenes to convert those prospects into paying clients; what has to happen behind the scenes to support your clients, to get referrals, to process payments – you may not like those things, but if you want a thriving business, you better understand it, and you have to be willing to create what I call this “enlightened discipline” to understand the business of coaching.

You must master those three areas to create a thriving and successful coaching business beyond your wildest dreams. If you simply come at it from the coach perspective saying “I love coaching. I want to coach people. Who can I coach?” you’ll only be focusing on where to find the next person to coach – that’s a technicians perspective. There’s so much more, and you’ll hit a plateau or you’ll wonder why you can’t find leads, why you can’t create consistent revenue, and why you can’t can’t create sustainable revenue. Because you’re thinking of it as a technician, as a coach.

So, master those three areas: the skills of coaching, the marketing of coaching, and the business of coaching. And then you have to infuse – as an entrepreneur – you’ve got to infuse all of that with the discipline of self-care and leadership; leading yourself on a daily basis because you are your own boss. You answer to yourself – that’s the hardest accountability that’s out there. That’s why you should have a coach, why you should be in a mastermind.

You also need to master the discipline of leadership when it comes to your team. Because, as an entrepreneur – yes! – you might start doing everything yourself, but you will need to bring on other team members. Maybe a virtual assistant, maybe other team members as you continue to grow, to take care of the areas that you are not skilled at, that aren’t your zone of genius. To keep growing you will need to bring on some team members. And you must master the discipline of leadership when it comes to leading your tribe. So, you’ve got to also be a great leader in addition to being a great business owner, and a great marketer, and a great coach.

So really those are the four areas that you must master. Take that approach, put on the Hat of the proactive business and – I promise you – things will be much smoother sailing than trying to create success only as the technician.

Here’s to creating the business beyond your wildest dreams, so you can live the lifestyle beyond your wildest dreams.

Posted in: Professional Development, StartUp Coach, The Coaching Lifestyle Podcast

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Two distinct business models every successful entrepreneur should understand…

Which one is right for YOU?

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