Selling Coaching – Best Tip

When I was the president of a medium-sized digital printing business in upstate New York, I would periodically get phone calls or emails from business consultants and business coaches offering to help me solve the problems in my business, earn more money, get more control over my time, and build the value of my business so that I could sell it for maximum value someday. 

I wanted to solve my problems, earn more money, get more control over my time and maximize company value, but I never accepted any of those invitations.  Why?  Simply stated, I didn’t believe they could help me!

After all, they didn’t know me, my business, my people, my challenges, or even my industry!  If they didn’t know those things, how could they possibly help?

Here’s how they could have done it…

They could have given me a “coaching experience” instead of a “coaching education.”

Instead of telling me how smart they are and how successful they’ve been with other (unnamed) companies, they could have asked me a powerful question about my business that would have engaged me in the conversation. 

For example, what if one of them had called and said: “I work with successful business owners who are serious about profitability growth, getting more control over their time, and maximizing company value.  As you’re thinking about your business, what’s the single most important thing that you’d like to see different in the next six months?”

That question would have stopped me in my tracks because while I “felt” the unease of unmet opportunities every single day, I didn’t have clarity of the biggest area of opportunity I had.  I didn’t have clarity because I hadn’t asked myself that powerful question!

If someone had asked me that, I likely would have thought about it for a minute, and then hit them with the top few things that came to mind.  I would certainly have been engaged in the conversation, after all, it was about “me,” not about how smart the other person on the phone was!

The next time you talk with a prospective consulting or coaching client, resist the temptation to tell them how smart you are and how you’ve helped other people.  Instead, get them engaged in a real conversation about them and their specific challenges. 

If you do this, you’ll earn credibility and trust.  You’ll also earn an open ear later to hear about you and how you may be able to help them.

Give it a try!  I wish you great success!