Why investing in a business coach is essential if you want to perform your best

HomeWork’s interview with Simon Lane

Working for yourself can be lonely. Finding the right people to collaborate with and support you is essential, which is why we launched the HomeWork Business Club, enabling you to grow professionally with our community. We connect you with a business coach, marketing, sales and HR experts and provide access to networking and masterclass events to help you meet our members.

We spoke to Simon Lane, a Growth Specialist at ActionCoach and one of our Business Club facilitators, to discuss some of the challenges facing businesses today and why investing in yourself is critical to business success.

What are the challenges facing businesses today?

Two of the biggest concerns are future uncertainty and skills shortage. The answer to both is to deliver great marketing. 

Let’s take the first concern. The Bank of England has increased its prediction for a “prolonged recession” from just over a year to two years. Economic uncertainty usually causes a lower growth rate until the uncertainty resolves.

Despite these uncertain times, now is the time to press harder on the marketing accelerator. If many competitor companies reduce their marketing activity – think of that as cutting the noise – it becomes easier for you to stand out. 

Revenue growth depends on a solid marketing strategy, even during a recession. If the ‘pie’ is shrinking and you want to maintain your income, you need to grow your slice. There is also a longer-term opportunity because, when things pick up, you will end up with a larger piece of the overall pie. 

Revenue growth depends on a solid marketing strategy, even during a recession. If the ‘pie’ is shrinking and you want to maintain your income, you need to grow your slice – Simon Lane. 

Now the second concern is the skills shortage in the labor market.

We usually think about marketing to prospective customers when we go to market. We rarely think about marketing to prospective employees, and there is a need for more employees in today’s job market. 

People choose not to work with you for two reasons. Either they don’t know about you, or they know about you and don’t want to work with you.

Marketing to prospective employees will be more critical than ever in 2023. You must give them a reason to join your firm beyond a decent salary. Could you show a prospect an exciting vision and that your values align with theirs, so they feel the company will be an excellent cultural fit for them?

What would you say to someone starting in business?

Starting in business can be overwhelming. Realise that you do not have to work everything out for yourself. Millions of people have started businesses before you, and they most likely have faced the same problems that you will.

Having a good network of supportive people around you is essential. The HomeWork Business Club is ideal for those starting or looking to grow, and I am excited to be involved in showing people how to unlock their potential!

Two of the most dangerous words in the English language regarding business are ‘I know’. People often ask, “What can you tell me about my business?” Whilst I might not be an expert in your field, I can help you work fewer hours and earn more money if you are prepared to work with me. 

With sound systems in place, you will work fewer hours, scale the business faster and hit your goals sooner than you otherwise would. It’s far easier to have someone show you than try and work it out for yourself. So, take the easier route and surround yourself with good peers, mentors, teachers and coaches.

Why is it essential for small businesses to set goals?

Setting goals are critical to success. Goals help us to focus on where we are going, but it is equally important to ask: “Why is this important to me?” Knowing why a goal is essential to you is critical. It means you are more likely to pursue your goal with intention rather than ponder it on a whim.  

I help my clients to set goals, understand their significance and then pursue them. The day-to-day running of your business soon takes over, so sticking to a five-year plan is tough; it is best to break it down into actionable steps. 

I encourage our clients to start with a three-year goal and break this down into 90-day planning cycles. A lot changes in a year, so take one day each quarter to step outside your business, review the past quarter and plan for the next 90 days. Ninety-day planning works because it is a period long enough to get things done but short enough to stay focused. 

Why is investing in yourself essential?

Investing in yourself is vital to diversify your knowledge, improving decision-making, and build confidence. Ultimately, you will be more prepared financially and maximise your career or business choices. Why should others invest in you if you do not invest in yourself?

Why should you invest in a Business Coach?

Business owners rarely have an opportunity to speak to someone about their business and to have someone to challenge them and their beliefs. A Business Coach will always have your best interests at heart. Our role is to limit interference so you can perform your best and reach your optimal potential.

Players are often taught the following in tennis:

Your performance = Your potential – Your interference.  

In other words, good players sometimes perform poorly in a game because they get frustrated and begin to think negatively. Head-trash can be a reason we need to reach our potential in business too. As well as a source of great ideas, coaches work to identify and eliminate unhelpful beliefs. 

Remember, the people around us influence us. Whilst our family and friends may have our best interests at heart, they might not be the best place to help grow your business.  

Deciding whether to invest in a business coach is a matter of deciding whether to invest in yourself. A business coach should always have your best interests at heart, working with you to limit interference to enable you to perform your best and reach your full potential.

Who would benefit from a Business Coach? What’s involved?

You could say ‘everyone’, but those that benefit most from business coaching are often open-minded and have a growth mindset. 

Imagine you want to do a marathon. If you are happy to get to the finish line and don’t care about the time, then you don’t need a coach. You can do a bit of training, jogging slowly around the park. If you want to perform to your full potential, get a coach to push you to perform in each training session. So, the question is, how important is it for you to be at your best?  

In terms of what’s involved, people need to commit long-term. You cannot have coaching for a couple of weeks and expect magic to happen. Business is not static, you will go through different stages, so it should be a long-term commitment, building a trusted relationship with your coach over the years.

Business club

Why are you an advocate of flexible workspaces?

We must be mindful of whom influences us. We should surround ourselves with peers who understand what we are going through, especially when starting a business. A flexible workspace like HomeWork is perfect for this!

You can walk straight into HomeWork and instantly become part of the local business community. The space is a great way to escape the work-from-home blues and a fantastic opportunity to expand your network and grow your business.

How are you helping our Business Club members?

HomeWork Business Club is about helping people, and giving them the tools to succeed, so I am excited to be part of it. I am offering members a 30-minute free business coaching session to show people how to unlock their potential.

Have you just started a business, or are you ready to start your growth journey? Then, join our Club!

At HomeWork, we’ve partnered with experts in our workspace to give you the tools and insights you need to support your business growth.HomeWork Business Club membership is included in our fixed desk membership. If you’re a flexible user, you can add this for an annual or monthly fee. If you would like to find out more, you can visit our website.