We hear about coaches and consultants everyday. Pick up a magazine, watch a talk show, most everyone has a coach it seems. Although people rave about having a coach, there are still others that think it’s a waste of time, or not quite for them. Dan Kennedy has coached hundreds of entrepreneurs in over a hundred industries. This is the first part of three articles that outlines why you need a coach and why you need one now.
Why Top Performers Use Coaches – And You Need One Now, Part 1
by Dan Kennedy
Having personally had hundreds of high-flying entrepreneurs, business and practice owners and sales professionals as well as people from my own fields of speaking, authorship, publishing and consulting in coaching groups for nearly a dozen years, and helping develop coaching programs in over 100 different industries, I think I have a pretty good understanding of why coaching seems to work so well for entrepreneurs, and why you should get one or several coaches of your own-especially now, if facing unusually challenging selling or business conditions.
Being Held Accountable
Being Questioned and Challenged
Being Listened To
Being Recognized For Your Achievements
Different people have different needs at different times in their lives, but I find most entrepreneurs share all six of them to varying degrees.
On many occasions, as a speaker, I was on programs with, and had private “green room” time with legendary athletes like Joe Montana, Troy Aikman, Olympian Mary Lou Retton, George Foreman, and coaches like Tom Landry, Lou Holtz, and Jimmy Johnson. The athletes all agreed that high performers personally hold themselves to gruelingly high standards, but even so, were it not for feeling accountable to teammates, fans and coaches, and being held accountable by their coach or coaches, who monitored their statistics, replayed film of misjudgments and mistakes, analyzed and assessed their performance, they would never have reached the levels of success they did. The joke of entrepreneurship is: good news and bad news, you’re your own boss! Having a coach guide you in committing to doing, changing, testing certain things between now and the next call or meeting, then having you report on those things is guaranteed to improve your follow-through on your own best ideas! In short, accountability automatically improves performance and results.
Questions and Challenged
The more successful you are, the less likely the people who work for you or are around all the time are to challenge your ideas. It’s easy to wind up surrounded by “yes men.” The outside coach with no axe to grind can be both objective and frank. He can ask the provocative questions that force you to defend our idea. If you can, that’s valuable. If you can’t, that’s valuable too.
A Newsweek magazine article about professional business/life coaches described us a “part therapist, part consultant.” A lot of entrepreneurs have no one to talk to about business OR personal matters who dare “let their hair down with”…who will listen without any agenda. I often find that a client will talk his way to his own terrific answer, solution, or plan of action if I’ll just listen. Having a coach with life and business experience relevant to your own, who is personally successful, who can relate to you, and who you can relate to is extremely beneficial.
Part two of this article will continue with the 6 reasons you need a coach. Come back tomorrow for the next in the series.
About The Author: Dan Kennedy is the author of nine business books, including his newest, NO B.S. TIME MANAGEMENT FOR ENTREPRENEURS, available in bookstores or from online booksellers. Additional information and free chapter previews at www.nobsbooks.com. Included with the book, a coupon for a free kit of peak personal productivity tools. Kennedy is also a busy entrepreneur, consultant, speaker and direct-response advertising copywriter. Info at www.dankennedy.com.