I am always amazed at how many 'CEO Coaches' exist in the business world today. It seems like half of my new connections on LinkedIn are a coach of some kind.
Which makes me wonder, why are there so many coaches?
Is leading a company that difficult? Have thousands upon thousands of small business owners stumbled into something that is way over their head?
I've had my own business for over 20 years, and it is difficult. But I can't say that the majority of my 'a-ha' moments and major breakthroughs came from working with a coach.
That said, I've been tip groups, networking groups, CEO committees, and even the occasional small business owner groups that you have to pay to join (you know the ones).
The Best Coaching Experience I've Ever Had
When I was in a 'paid' small business owner group, the best meetings we ever had was when we stopped talking about our issues and started talking about our plans.
Everyone went around the room and explained how they were going to grow their business next year. The group was never more excited and energized.
Usually at each meeting one person would share a problem they were having (the problems are mostly people issues) and the group would offer advice.
"In my experience" was how you were supposed to start the advice.
Those types of meeting usually leave you feeling depressed afterwards.
BUT-talking about growing the business? Talking about marketing? Talking about Sales? THAT was exciting! That got people really throwing around great ideas.
Are You Hiring a Coach Because You're Growing, or Shrinking?
If you need to hire a coach because your business is booming and it's flying out of control, that's one thing.
But when I look in LinkedIn at the multiple of job descriptions for coaches, I don't think that's the case.
Usually business coaches have job descriptions and titles that are obviously attracting business owners that are struggling. Regain profits! Turn-around coach!
If You're Shrinking and Need More Sales, is a Coach Going to Fix That?
I don't know about you but the most successful companies I know have great products, great services, and a great sales and marketing plan. Leadership is OK.
Money solves a lot of problems. Money solves a lot of leadership problems.
Steve Jobs had great products and great marketing plans. I've read his biography. I don't know if he was a great leader.
This is not to put down leadership skills-you need them, obviously. It's just to point out, that maybe what your company needs right now is not better leadership, but more sales.
To get more sales you need a sound marketing plan.
And to have a marketing plan, you need a remarkable product or service that solves a customer's problem.