|11-02-2011, 06:16 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2010
How to get started in career and business coaching or advising?
This is one of my ideas of what I could do to test the waters for it as a new career. I read business and career literature on a regular basis, and talk and think these topics frequently as well. A lot of my friends ask me questions about these topics, knowing that I immerse myself in them a lot personally. I am curious about how people usually get started doing this professionally, particularly when they lack track record to begin with (or I should ask, do they include the testimonials of advices given out that actually worked for their friends and family?).
Thanks in advance for your feedback!
|11-02-2011, 01:50 PM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Boston, MA
I've coached a lot of people
The best way to get started with career coaching is to simply find a friend and volunteer your services.
You may want to figure out what type of career coaching you want to offer. For example, when I was doing it, I offered advice for graduate students and new grads. I wrote a lot of resumes and cover letter too. I also helped a few people switch career fields, usually people under 35. So my niche was to work with people between 22-35 who wanted to change careers, get new jobs, or apply to graduate school.
I'm not career coaching anymore, not because I didn't like it - I loved it - but because I outgrew it. I'm back to doing business coaching, especially with social enterprise and sustainable tech companies. My background is in technology marketing.
OK, let me map out how you can approach this, are you ready? I'm going to tell you everything I wish I knew before I got started.
1. Decide why you want to offer coaching? What it is about coaching that inspires you?
2. Do you want to help anyone who's looking for a new career? Or do you want to help specific demographics with career advice?
3. Will you offer your services online? Over the phone? Skype?
4. Are you willing to volunteer your services then when you get new clients, charge them for your work?
I have a free audio you can download that outlines some of the mistakes not to make when starting a business, especially a coaching business. You can find the audio along with other articles on how to stat a business with less stress by clicking here.
I hope these resources can help you.
|11-02-2011, 03:16 PM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: New York, NY
Do it first, then coach about it!
There are multitude of people striving to start businesses. Actually struggling to do the work, get it done, justify our advertising dollars (or even the need to advertise at all, and paying the bills off of our revenue, and trying not to dip into founder contributions too much) and we all become very proficient in the same catch phrases (RT @fredwilson "Early in a startup, product decisions should be hunch driven. Later on product decisions should be data driven."), rules of thumbs, (businesses should be taking full advantage of the low cost, highly interactive social networks available; Stubleup and Reddit can drive massive traffic to your site; you should strive for link building), and motivation (Thomas Edison failed 99 times before inventing the lightbulb, Ben Franklin was 17 when he left to start printing on his own, Jesus was 37 when he started his "career," ect, ect)
Aside from the fact that everyone can use a daily pick-me-up, I HIGHLY OBJECT to the business start-up that is a start-up in advising start-ups!
Have people faked it until they made it? Sure. Have people spent 20 years in academia and transitioned right into teaching the same courses? Sure! But that circular system breeds only different flavors of the same source material. It doesn't generate NEW value, it doesn't create.
A Better Way:
If you want to find out how to do something well, look to the person who has done it already; that is your coach. Not the other person who has read about that person that can coach you well.
In 2008 a business partner and I started a stand-up comedy production company because there was a need, and we had good ideas on how to fill it. He was a new comic and he was having problems getting stage time, but he could sell, sell, and sell. So we created our own show and hired the best NYC comics to pick up his slack. He filled shows with exceptional selling, and patrons got an amazing show because of the strong caliber of comic, and Jeff's entertaining personality.
By 2009 we formalized the system and business model. We were a bona fide production company. I can claim without a flinch that we are the BEST Thursday stand-up show in NYC because of our model and because we hired weekend quality comics. We've done shows on the road, filmed a pilot for TV pitching, filmed a music video for a popular bit, worked through the endless maze of freelance talent for things as obscure as beat boxers, to the much needed like graphic designers and filming crews.
The product was good, Jeff's comedic skill quadrupled from sharing stage time with legends in the industry, and my business acumen went from theoretical to actually-did-it, this-is-practical. If you needed to start up a production company in NYC, I could coach you on that. It's real world experience, gems that can be passed...not just regurgitated good sense.
I'll wrap up with a few contrary examples:
We learned that printing flyers and posting did nothing for our numbers.
We learned that business cards, used as flyers, and not vanity title bearers were the best thing we could ever buy (highly effective, and drastically cheaper)!
We learned that the friend-connect for pro work FAILS 99% of the time!
We learned that the average drink consumption of a patron in these clubs is $19, and we can manipulated that with light levels and proper host plugging.
We learned that Legal Zoom is not an efficient route to go when establishing business entities.
We learned that social networking means nothing without personal networking.
We learned that almost every time, if someone turned us down, we could do it ourselves, and we could do it better. Now clubs seek us out for our streamlined model and consistent high level of quality in both performance and customer satisfaction.
Anyway, I've lost myself in a rant. My only point is that true worthy coaching comes from a successful professional that has already done what you want to do, and one who has a warm teaching spirit and a generous heart. Anyone who buys counseling from someone who has not "done it" and paid their dues early on is making a foolish investment. People do it anyway (arguably a part of paying dues), so my last point is that any seller who is selling advice that he has not personally tested and measured, is taking advantage of rookies' ignorance, and is cultivating a Win/Lose exchange.
I encourage you to share ALL that you know and brainstorm with others that have like interests, (Alex's point is very valid, that you can started helping friends right now for free to build a rep and test out theories) but it is my hope that you record your gems now, to be monetized at a later date when you can present measurements and personal case studies with it.
I just read a post from Michael Ellsberg that has great pointers in getting started with that.
8 Steps to Getting What You Want… Without Formal Credentials
Good luck, and I wish you the best!
Sorry for looming down from a soap box.
|11-06-2011, 03:14 AM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2010
Alex: Thanks for the heads-up.
Chad: I understand your concerns, and I appreciate the honesty. This idea only came to me recently, and I may not even go with that right now in terms of doing it professionally. Thanks for the advice of recording the results from the recommendations I give to my friends based on their descriptions. I've read Michael Ellsberg's guest post on Tim Ferriss's site, and I'm in the process of including some of the recommendations in the time investments that I'm going to make in the next year or so.
Last edited by stanigator; 11-06-2011 at 03:18 AM.
|11-07-2011, 05:28 PM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: New York, NY
If you can relate your advice to how you succeeded at dominating the ASVAB Study Guide niche, or the 10 Things You Should Ask Yourself Before Joining the Military niche, for instance, you will have the second half of good writing at your disposal. You will have details to support your ideas.
Great book, btw! Ideas and Details, about writing with an effective and engaging style.
Keep us posted! I'm interested in ANY startup and that proprietor's experience
|11-14-2011, 09:07 PM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2011
Build a team of people around you and coach them into winning games - be it the sales game or football. Then as you learn how to bring out the best in people, you can improve your skills and use these results as a way to show what you can do.
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