Years before I needed or could afford a business coach, I watched this TED talk by Cameron Herold. I was inspired to do what he’s done, and saw him as a role model. I started reading and listening to everything he published, and knew that someday he would be the coach I wanted to hire.
Many entrepreneurs are highly independent and feel the need to take on tasks and figure things for themselves. It makes sense. As you built your business, you may have started out handling every aspect by yourself. Then, by the time your business begins to grow, it seems as though things are going well, so you may not feel the need to look for advice. However, even when you’re succeeding, that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to improve both your business and your life.
That’s why I believe in the power of executive coaching. In fact, investing in coaches was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. It’s not easy—for anyone, even people who are not entrepreneurs—to admit you don’t have all the answers and that you need help and advice from someone, whether that’s in business, life, or even fitness. But having an outside perspective from someone knowledgeable and dedicated to helping you can skyrocket your success.
An executive coach can help you develop healthy mindsets around your business, create strong habits and sustainable routines, become a better leader and improve your emotional intelligence, and help you become more productive and creative to leverage your time better. If there are specific troubles you’re having, you can turn to your executive coach to help you work through them.
However, if you want to benefit from coaching, you have to be open to it. It requires you to be vulnerable and humble, so you can truly listen and be willing to enact change. You need to have the desire to improve. To benefit from coaching, you will need to self-reflect and take action to change your habits and your mindset.
Here are a few ways an executive coach can help you and your business grow:
An executive coach can help you learn tools to improve your productivity so you can better leverage your time and spend more time doing things that are important to you, such as creative pursuits, being with family, and resting to reenergize. Your executive coach has the perspective so see where you’re running into inefficiencies and why, as well as helping you mitigate those, whether that’s taking on tasks that could be accomplished by someone else or outside factors such as lack of respite that interfere with your cognitive abilities and reduce your productivity.
There are many productivity tools out there that can help you with efficiency, but they can only help so much as they don’t take your specific situation and needs into account. An executive coach can help you develop a plan that’s tailored to you and adjust as needed as your business grows, your role changes, and you face new challenges in work and in life.
Develop a healthy mindset
It’s a popular thought among entrepreneurs that mindset can make a major difference in creating successful outcomes in anything you want to achieve. Plenty of books address this very topic. Your mindset is about your worldview, the approach you take to business, the way you handle challenges, your mental health, and much more. It’s important to have a healthy mindset in order to maintain motivation, achieve your goals, develop strong relationships, solve problems, and create healthy habits. This is one of the most important skills your executive coach can help you develop.
Because it is such a complex topic, it is truly beneficial to have someone to help you untangle your thoughts, point out negative thinking patterns, and give you cognitive tools to help you create and maintain a healthy mindset for business and for life.
Become a stronger leader
Your executive coach can help you develop stronger leadership skills by increasing your emotional intelligence and evaluating your strengths and weaknesses. Leadership is one area where it’s often difficult to know where you need to improve and how to do so, and a coach is a great resource to build your leadership knowledge and skills. A coach can give you specific tools and exercises based on your needs or help you strategize when change is necessary. If you know your weaknesses, you can work together to improve your skills in those areas or find ways to work around them. Perhaps that means delegating some leadership tasks to someone who does have the right skills while you focus on what you’re best at and care about most. Often the hardest step to take in leadership is stepping back to gain more value in your life, but it’s what will give you the most freedom. When you’ve set your team up for success, taking a step back can allow your business to grow while you have time to work on the more creative site or pursue other endeavors.
Strategically build your business
The ideal executive coach for you has experience in business and preferable in fields related to your own. This may be someone who has been in your industry for a long time or has experience as a CEO. That experience can be an invaluable resource when making business decisions or developing creative strategies. If you have a specific goal in mind, you coach can help you develop a plan to get there, and their experience may help you identify obstacles or opportunities you may not have recognized otherwise. If you encounter a challenge, you can rely on your coach for advice.
One of the least expected benefits of an executive coach is the networking opportunities they may provide. After all, they’re likely working with people at your level, in related fields to yours. My executive coach helped me connect with many professionals who have been beneficial to me and my business. Through this network, I’ve created friendships and branched out to create a larger network of my own with other CEOs who encourage and support one another.
While many CEOs dismiss the idea of an executive coach because it seems like an unnecessary use of both time and money, I believe that a good coach is a powerful and underutilized tool. If costs are too high, you can always look into coaching groups, which can also help build your network. I’m incredibly glad that I found an experienced coach who is able to help me as I grow my business and work smarter rather than harder. My coach understands my values, my goals, and what’s important to me so I continue to keep these things in sight as I strategically build my business. I think that every CEO, no matter how experienced they are, can benefit from coaching. It pays to be a life-long learner, and coaching is a great way to invest in yourself and your business.