July 11, 2019

What to look for in a Business Coach or Advisor

Have you recently made the decision to invest in yourself by bringing someone into your business circle? Someone who can push you to achieve your goals and provide the feedback you require to grow? Help you cement that strategy and action plan? It can be so overwhelming once you've made that decision as to how you find the right person for you!

At Helix Planning, we truly understand how hard the decision can be, so that's why we've broken down the things that founder Sarah looks for when she brings on a new advisor. We like to practice what we preach and strive to embody and reflect our values in what we do, for our clients.

Great rapport

The ability to build relationships and develop trust begins at first contact. It is an integral binding agent that sets the stage for your development and the effectiveness of connection. Does your business coach make the effort to listen to you and understand your needs? Have they worked out quickly what is important to you and what your style is? If you don't feel that you click with this coach or advisor or you find perhaps that the conversation doesn't just flow then perhaps it's worth continuing your search.

Easy to communicate with

Building on from great rapport is the need for you to feel comfortable raising your issues, outlining any concerns and have ease of understanding in discussion. If you can't understand your business advisor or don't feel that you are being heard, you'll be banging your head on a brick wall and flushing cash down the toilet. If you are anything like Sarah you'll be frustrated beyond doubt and getting grumpy in the process.

Understand your issues and your business

Only you know your business as well as you do, and no one can take that from you or best you in that knowledge. But the whole point of engaging a coach is to enable dialogue and feedback and create space for growth. So your business coach must be able talk on your level, understand - truly understand - your issues and concerns, and fundamentally recognise and relate to your business as if it was their own. There is an argument in the collective business coaching community that industry knowledge is a firm prerequisite to achieve strong outcomes via coaching or advisory. At Helix however, we believe that if you can explain it, we can identify with it. That means your consumer can too which ultimately is what we are all striving for.

Be transparent in their knowledge; approach and assessment of their match for your business

Not all coaches are subject matter experts as we've already mentioned, and it's up to you to decide whether you need one or not. That said another fundamental that is wise to seek from a potential coach is the transparency of their knowledge or skill set. Are they honest and frank with you about their position on their ability to assist you and what their style is? For example, if you employ us here at Helix Planning for accountability coaching; with our very direct approach we will hold you accountable, and some people don't like that. It can cause friction if you weren't aware that was our style. Like your business is not for every client and consumer, some coaches are not for all businesses and it makes sense to include this as a key criteria for choosing the right advisor for you.

Synergy of personalities

The people you surround yourself with directly affect your vibrational frequency. This is basic Quantum Physics lol, feel free to look it up. With that in mind, you want to seek a coach who is on the same wave length as you. This will create an environment of positivity and strength. Not only will this make your time spent together more effective and enjoyable but it will amplify the vibrations of your success piece and attract opportunities.

Demonstrate a clear proposition of what they offer and how this benefits you

Often the need to take on a strategist or coach is during a vulnerable time for your business. You may be stuck and need help, financially strapped or completely overwhelmed. A quality business advisor will demonstrate for you a clear proposition of what they offer and how this may benefit your business prior to your engagement of them. They should be able to give you directional feedback as to how they believe they'll be able to assist, what involvement from them is required and the associated costs of this upfront.

Can engage you for your business vision

If you are in need for a coach or advisor, it's probably fair to say that you are a little lost in your vision. Heck isn't that the reason you are currently looking for help?  Where you are struggling to express, your business coach or advisor must be able to ignite your passion and coax from you, your business vision. If they cant, we wouldn't think that they are a match.

You trust their ability to assist you to achieve your goals and hit your success measures

A key fundamental in any successful relationship - all types - is trust. Trust builds the relationship and binds the attributes listed above. If there is no trust, is there a relationship at all? In a professional relationship like business coaching or advisory, trust is the base foundation. So it makes sense that if you don't trust them, you will not achieve the outcomes you are striving for nor receive a return on your investment in yourself and them. A little bit of fear is actually normal. That's not what we are talking about here though. Engaging a service of this kind means you need to trust their skills and ability to drive you to your success.

You are prepared to allow them to hold you accountable

Finally, yet possibly the most important attribute required when engaging a business advisor and specifically Sarah from Helix, is to be open and welcome to accountability. It is proven as the difference between good businesses and great businesses. Setting your goals, creating an action plan and investing cash in the process is all fair and well, however it will not return the investment for you if there is little or no accountability in the process. Accountability coaching as part of the coaching strategy resolves to evolve your business to the next level.

If you are struggling to decide what is the right direction for you to take, just pick up the phone and ask your potential advisor a few questions built off the attributes we've listed above. Listen to your gut as it will help you decide, and congratulations on investing in yourself and your business growth.

If you think Helix Planning ticks these boxes for you, pick up the phone or send us an email and chat with our team on how we can your business!


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