Whether you are brand new at running an online business or you have been in business for a while, hiring an online business coach can be a cost-effective decision. A business coach will offer you support and guidance while helping you focus on your business goals.
Rather than wasting time trying the newest technology or wasting money on the newest gadget, an online business coach can guide you to the tools you need to be successful. A business coach can also give you a pep talk when you are feeling down or can tell you when you are starting too many projects at once, thus getting you refocused on your business goals.
Hiring an online business coach is much like hiring an employee in a brick-and-mortar shop. You want someone who is friendly, reliable, knowledgeable, and professional. Confidence and prior experience in running an online business are also important.
Research is a must when you consider hiring a business coach. Doing a Google search will give you thousands of pages with coach names, but it’s foolish to just close your eyes and choose the name that your finger lands on. You wouldn’t do that when hiring a babysitter for your children, so you should not do that with your business either.
Once you have your leads on possible coaches, either from a search or from referrals, visit their websites and read about them. Find out where they are located and what their coaching hours are, since time differences could complicate booking your sessions. Find out what their specialty is or what target they serve. If you sell a cosmetic product, a high tech IT coach won’t be much help.
Inquire about having a free phone consultation or an interview. Unless the candidate has a full clientele, your coaching prospects should be willing to give you time for an interview. If not, that’s a huge red flag! Prepare questions to ask but also be confident and clear about what you need from them if you hire them. You are the one spending the money so let the coaches convince you why they are the right choice.
Whether you call for an interview or simply email your questions to the candidates, always ask other peers for referrals. Word of mouth referrals are like gold, and you will hear genuine input from others who have worked with these coaches. Also, follow your instincts if you get questionable feedback from others or if you don’t like their demeanor over the phone. You need to trust your coach since you will be sharing in-depth aspects of your business.
After you decide on which coach to hire, ask them to sign a non-disclosure contract that either you or your attorney can write. Many coaches have their own contracts but there is nothing wrong with having your own to protect your business interests. The contract should simply state that your business coach will not divulge any business secrets or plans that you discuss together, and you can also include payment schedules and coaching session frequency.