“So, what exactly does a business coach do?”
I get this question a lot -- usually from irritated business owners who've hired support but aren't receiving the solutions they need.
And, I understand the confusion—coaching and consulting are often used interchangeably. But never fear reader! Today we will clear up any confusion and clarify the differences between the two. This will help you avoid the headache of expectations that don’t pan out and frustration from money spent on the wrong solutions.
Meet Heather from Sweet Solutions Bakery. She received her first Easy-Bake Oven at five and has been obsessed with cakes & confections ever since. Six months ago, she made her dreams a reality and opened Sweet Solutions.
Heather is thrilled that she can make a living creating her whimsical cakes and treats. Yet, owning a business has been challenging. At times, she feels like she is “in over her head”, overseeing much more than cakes.
I get it.
It's is easy to slip into the role of doing “all-the-things”. In fact, it's common to take on multiple roles in the beginning. But, it's important to not get stuck wearing "all-the-hats", as it is unsustainable and leads to burn-out. In order to avoid overwhelm and exhaustion, Heather needs to bring in support to help her build the skills to manage her business and to help her solve specific issues.
Let's take a look at the different options for support.
Coaches offer guidance, perspective, and most important: accountability.
Heather wants to move from where she is now to achieving her “big vision”. To help her understand what is most important, her coach will ask strategic and thought-provoking questions. By listening deeply, a coach will reflect and offer feedback to Heather. This “process” will establish her goals and priorities. Next, the coach will co-create strategy and provide systems for accomplishing Heather’s short term goals, as well as, the big-picture vision.
Coaches act as collaborators who will help you understand your beliefs, desires, and motivations. They will help champion you to transform into the business owner that you dream of being. With the support of her coach, Heather stays focused and feels confident in her ability to run her business.
Consultants are experts that solve a specific problem related to your business.
Heather enjoys providing allergy-free cakes for clients with gluten sensitivities. But, selling those cakes has been frustrating. She doesn't know how to attract those clients to her website. This is a perfect opportunity for Heather to hire an SEO consultant.
By hiring an expert to solve the problem and do the “hands-on” work, Heather can stay focused on what she does best while getting the traffic she needs to sell her line of gluten-free cakes.
Additional Types of Support
It's also helpful to remember that support doesn’t have to be limited to coaches or consultants.
Mentors. A mentor will be in the same line of work and has demonstrated that they can achieve success. You can “pick-their-brain” about problems they’ve had and how they overcame those hardships. Generally, mentors enjoy sharing and want to give back by supporting your growth.
Therapists & Counselors. Sometimes you might be struggling with an issue from your past or childhood that presents a barrier to your learning. A therapist will help you understand why that problem is there and work with you to overcome your issue.
Not always! And, that can be a good thing. Many coaches will also offer focused solutions in their particular area of expertise such as Strategic Planning, Marketing, Branding, Social Media, Team Building, etc. And, some consultants have incorporated coaching methodology into their business practices. It’s important to ask thorough questions to determine how a coach or consultant can best support you.
How Can Your Best Business Life Coaching Help You?
In my work, I combine coaching, consulting, and therapeutic techniques. My goal is to help clients avoid burn-out and achieve their ideal work-life balance. I work with a holistic perspective and use the “pillars” of business, wellness, joy, and connection.
Feeling balanced and nourished in your personal life helps you be more focused, strategic, and present in your business.
That’s why I repeat the mantra: Your Best Self Does Your Best Work.
Much of the focus of the work is to guide clients back to their own agency. By supporting clients to use their intuition and experience you are able to independently and easily make the best decisions for your life and business.
Additionally, I use my background of 20+ years in marketing communications and small-business development; putting on my “consulting hat” when needed. :)
I hope you have found this article helpful! These are big decisions for your business and to help you navigate your choices, just remember:
✔️ Proactive and system-focused
✔️ Take a holistic approach to develop a business and its leader
✔️ Help you learn how to build the business you want
✔️ Reactive and project-based
✔️ Expert in their area of expertise
✔️ Assess a problem & does the work to create the solution
I would love to hear your feedback on this post!
Hi there! I’m Jordan Eades, Holistic Business Coach and founder of Your Best Business LIfe. My passion is guiding women business owners who want to make a big impact in business—without sacrificing what matters most.
Your Best Business Life coaching provides the keys to overcoming overworking; allowing you to create a sustainable and profitable business, focus on the work that fuels your passion, unapologetically invest in self-care, prioritize experiences that light you up, and provide the support you need to thrive.