21 HARD TRUTHS Your Business Coach Won’t Tell You
What Your Coach Can Do For You
We’re all familiar with the role of a coach in professional sports. They’re usually in a sharp suit on the sidelines or behind the bench, pacing back and forth, clipboard in hand, shouting out instructions.
They are there to motivate the athletes, come up with plays and game plans, and help them work to improve on any weak links.
They can tell the players what they are doing wrong with their performance, because they are able to look at it objectively in a way that the athlete cannot.
One hires a business coach to perform in a similar fashion.
They can help guide you towards your business goals, give you tools and strategies to implement to take your business to the next level, and push you to work harder and make more decisions than you might if left to your own devices.
Like watching a foul shot or a golf swing, they can objectively assess the performance of you and your business and suggest ways to fine tune it.
It isn’t enough to simply encourage your passion and enthusiasm.
Quite often what you need is a bucket of metaphorical water poured over your head and some straight truth in your ear.
I call this “tough love”.
You don’t just need a cheerleader, although this is important. You need someone who is going to accurately identify your roadblocks and give you solutions.
So on that note, here are 21 hard truths most business coaches won’t tell you unless they are high quality and have what it takes to help you succeed.
The 21 Hard Truths Your Business Coach Won’t Tell You
1- Your business will not just “eventually” succeed.
The hard-truth based on reality, is that most people don’t have what it takes to see their business grow to the successful levels that they dream of.
Belief is not enough. What it actually takes is endurance and the ongoing motivation to make a consistent effort over time.
Building a business is a great deal of work, and it requires a level of intensity, commitment, and perseverance that simply put, most do not possess.
That’s why the statistics are what they are. Half of all small businesses started will fail in the first few years, and 80 percent will fail by year five.
If hearing all of this motivates you, and there is a voice inside you saying, “That’s not me!” then there is a great chance you do have what it takes, because you are DECIDING to succeed.
There is no need to re-invent the wheel. Find the right coaches and mastermind groups that will assist your growth and show you the kind of decisions you will need to make as you move forward.
2- You should not be doing everything yourself.
To be truly successful, you will need to delegate non-revenue producing tasks so you can free up time to concentrate on the things that are going to grow your business the fastest.
It’s simple: delegate or die, or at the very least suffer slow-to-no growth in your business.
If you are trying to “do it all because you don’t want to pay someone else to do something you can do,” you are the bottleneck to growing your Dream Business.
Here’s the bottom line regarding bringing personnel into your business: You should hire slow and fire fast, but if you need to hire to keep growing — then hire!
3- Do not hold on to your money. You must invest in your business.
The bare truth is, if you want to be successful with your endeavours, you have to put your money on the line.
This can be a scary prospect for many entrepreneurs and small business owners, but the old adage rings true: you have to invest money to make money.
One of the most important ways to invest is in “speed”. You can “buy” or “invest” in speed with coaching or by joining a mastermind group.
Their guidance and advice will help you avoid pitfalls that they can observe from their position of experience.
Here is another helpful tip to remember regarding your finances: you cannot save your way out of debt; you grow your way out of debt.
4- Don’t just sit back and let it happen.
You’re not going to grow your business and take it to where you want it to be by sitting back and hoping things will “just work themselves out”.
You need to be proactive in your efforts. Constantly.
When you employ this strategy and are in proactive mode, you put a plan together for your yearly financial goals. From this position, you reverse engineer who you have to be and what you have to do to achieve those income goals.
The success of your business is going to wrest on the efforts that you actively put in.
If you don’t water a garden, it simply won’t grow.
5- It is not going to be easy… it will take (way) more than just a few hours a day.
Building a business is not going to be easy. Overnight success stories are in fact rare.
Farmers don’t just toss a few seeds over the shoulder and go back into the ranch-house for some pancakes, expecting that their crops will just pop up.
No, they continually plant seeds, nurture and cultivate them, harvest them, process them, and then enjoy the fruits of their labour.
Your business is no different, so be ready to roll up your sleeves.
6- Do not be general with your services. You will not reach more clients.
One of the marketing strategies I teach my coaching clients is the importance of niching yourself.
You want to be known for something different and unique, so you can stand out from your competition.
By niching, you are able to effectively address very specific pain-points for prospective clients, and do so in an expert capacity.
When you are too general, you spread yourself thin, and prospective clients may be left unsure as to what it is that you do best.
Niching allows you to position yourself as an authority.
7- Sitting on important decisions and moving very slowly is not the best strategy for your business.
When a decision needs to be made, you essentially have three options: “yes,” “no,” or “I’ll think about it.”
The last option leads directly to a place I call Squishyville.
Nothing happens in Squishyville. This is a place of slow-to-no growth.
It is my strong belief that deciding “yes” or “no” moves your business forward at a much faster rate of speed than postponing the decision.
As an entrepreneur, your ability to get more comfortable accepting and managing risk and making faster decisions will help you grow a more profitable and successful business in less time.
Indecision leads to paralysis. Indecision leads right to Squishyville.
Good opportunities, when placed on the “I’ll think about it back burner” rarely come around a second time.
You’ve got to get confident in pulling the trigger and learning to live with the consequences.
8- The name of your business is terrible.
Well, if I am your coach, and I think your name is indeed hurting your business, I’ll be likely to tell you.
I’ll ask you if you are up for a no-nonsense and hard hitting approach, and if so, you can count on me to be candid and blunt with my suggestions and recommendations.
Sometimes, a simple name change can do wonders for you business, as it better suggests the niche market that you are aiming to work within.
9- Do not cultivate a double persona on social media.
Actually, you should always operate your business in the same way you conduct your life: with honour and full integrity.
By being authentic, you’ll attract those people with whom you are best suited to work, and repel some who would be a poor fit for your business and success.
It is best to be your authentic self — all the time. There should not be a personal brand and a separate “small business owner” brand.
So, what do I mean by being authentic? The dictionary describes authentic as “not false or an imitation, true to one’s own personality, spirit, or character.”
The key is authenticity all the time and in every place, and without a doubt, honesty is always the best policy!
10- I will NOT guarantee that you will make money at this business
While there certainly are time-tested and true methods to effectively grow a business, there are no actual guarantees in the entrepreneurial and business world.
Many businesses fail for many different reasons.
It is true, however, that there are some coaches that may attempt to drum up business with a kind of hype talk about how much money you will earn with their services.
If your coach is telling you will unquestionably make x amount of dollars guaranteed, you might want to start thinking about getting a different coach.
Any coach worth their salt would never guarantee an actual dollar amount. They will tell you what is possible, and what has to be done to do so.
11- Do not stay in your comfort zone.
Oftentimes, in order to be successful you’re going to have to get uncomfortable and push yourself out of your comfort zone.
Whether you are cold-calling, making swift decisions, networking, being interviewed or engaging in public speaking, you are going to have to push your limits and test yourself in new ways.
Different people will react to different stimuli or being pushed to get outside of their comfort zones.
I remember a coaching client a few years ago whose business model required him to make cold calls, until he built up momentum.
He eventually overcame his FEAR and built his business into a tremendous success.
When dealing with FEAR, remember these acronyms to help you get over it.
- False Expectations Appearing Real
- Forget Everything and Run
- Finding Excuses and Reasons
- Failure Expected and Received
12- Do not be sensitive of other people’s feelings.
If you meet, talk to, and interact with enough highly successful entrepreneurs, you’ll learn one thing. They are not afraid to make the tough decisions necessary to move their businesses forward, and they are not concerned with hurting people’s feelings.
None of them are rude or intend to hurt feelings; instead what they are is driven.
They are driven to success with a level of desire and intensity that few people have. That’s why the top one to two percent exists.
It’s because we are all wired differently, and you have to decide if you truly have what it takes to DECIDE that slow-to-no growth is no longer an acceptable option.
13- Do not pay attention to your critics and gauge your success on their level of approval.
The fact of the matter is, most of the other criticism you will hear does nothing for your business.
So, you must DECIDE to become immune to criticism.
If you want to succeed, you’re going to have to grow a thick skin. You simply cannot need the approval from others about how you operate your business.
Very simply, the only folks you need to please are your paying customers, and what they have to say is really the only thing you should be listening to in the first place.
I believe some entrepreneurs let criticism cloud their judgments, and worse, alter the way they do business. They’re afraid of what others think of them and are also afraid of failure.
To be successful, you cannot continually be in the company of nay-sayers. Surround yourself with like-minded, positive people.
Use a two-step filter when you hear criticism. First, ask yourself if the critic is an expert about which he or she is opining. Then ask yourself if her opinion really matters to you.
If either answer is “no,” be immune to the criticism.
This immunity will be an integral factor in your success.
14- You will not have steady growth from here on out.
As an entrepreneur, you’ll go through plenty of seasons with your business. Depending on your product or service, you may have cyclical busy and slow seasons.
Regardless, every business owner goes through seasons of growth and perhaps a season of want or struggle.
If you are facing either of the latter two, it’s tough. I know it’s tough because I’ve been there.
You can survive by making up your mind to do so. Your mindset will dictate your survival.
When it seems like you are in a season of famine, keep planting seeds for growth, so you can ultimately experience a bumper crop.
DECIDE to survive.
Even when things seem bleak, keep planting and nurturing seeds of growth for your business. Like the farmer, you have to continue to prepare for the harvest.
15- If it’s not perfect, do not start again and do it over.
The truth is, the pursuit of perfection is going to lead you to analysis paralysis, where you are too worried about making a mistake, and nothing gets done.
Perfection stunts or completely stalls business growth.
I advise you to adopt a “good is good enough” approach instead.
To me, “good is good enough” means that you always do your best work — create great content, write great books, shoot great videos, etc. and then you pull the trigger and implement and/or launch your work.
Accept that there will be a mistake or two. Fix it when you find it and move on.
Again, I am not suggesting you do substandard work. To the contrary: do your best work and then pull the trigger and makes corrections and edits as you move forward — making money!
16- The quality of your mindset is the most important factor of your success.
Without a doubt, your results are actually the product of your thoughts, and your thoughts drive your action or, in some cases, your inaction.
Remember: Your skill, talent, and work ethic will only take you so far. There are plenty of failed entrepreneurs who had those three components but failed in the mindset department.
So, what is mindset?
Your mindset as a combination of the thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes that you hold about your life, your business, and how much success you can create.
You must work to cultivate an iron-clad mindset that is firmly pointed in the direction of positivity and success.
Your skill, talent, and work ethic are the machine; your mindset is the fuel that runs it.
I highly recommend working with a mindset coach to help get you calibrated just right.
17- Profit is not a four-letter word.
Never think of profit as a dirty word. Every business and even not-for-profit organizations must take in more money than they spend to continue their operations.
The foundation of a successful business is the ability to turn a profit by solving problems and curing pains.
Without doing anything illegal or unethical, you have every right to charge what the market will bear for your service.
18- When it comes to your business, do not play it safe.
One of my favorite sayings is “wealth rewards risk, and wealth rewards speed.”
Remember Squishyville? That place where nothing happens, and the modus-operandi is slow-to-no growth. Well, it is full of entrepreneurs who are risk adverse and slow to take action.
There’s no wealth there, and there never will be. Your risk tolerance and entrepreneurial speed will dictate your ability to create wealth for yourself through your Dream Business.
In general, in life and business, the greater the risk, the greater the potential reward.
I firmly believe that.
So when entrepreneurs want to play it safe, and not risk being bold or investing in their future business (buying speed) — they also cannot expect to have the same size reward as someone who is willing to risk more.
19- You must be courageous.
This kind of belief will plant you squarely in the way of your own success.
What is actually needed is that you muster your courage, face your fears and get started now! It will never get easier; if you’re waiting for it to get easier, you are going to wait forever.
“Man up” and do what’s needed to become a success.
Unfortunately, many people are paralyzed by fear, and hesitant to take the necessary actions their business demands of them.
I once heard best-selling author Guy Kawasaki say, “Being an entrepreneur is hard and that you have to ‘suck it up!’ If it was easy everyone would be successful and rich — it ain’t easy!”
20- Learn everything you can.
The reality is, you can never really know enough.
Here’s the secret: Seeking wisdom, knowledge, and guidance is prudent. The most successful entrepreneurs have an insatiable appetite for knowledge and information.
Now, today’s world is oversaturated with content and information, so it is highly advisable to be very selective.
Your coach or mastermind group will be able to make quality suggestions to you, so you can concentrate on the top-level input.
21- Negative self-talk will kill you.
When our brains are running in those negative programs, they are, on some level, sending out negative thought patterns that we’re going to start acting from.
Those negative thought patterns are almost always destructive.
The remedy is the same as if your kitchen trash can were overflowing with garbage and “smelling up the joint.”
Easy, take out the trash!
Stop polluting your energy by having negative thoughts and junk in your head that you’re sorting through all the time.
I believe in re-framing our thought patterns to reflect the process of becoming that which we want to become.
For example, ‘I’m in the process of becoming disciplined and consistent to grow my business and move it forward.’ Or ‘I’m in the process of building my savings account to buy a boat or invest in a vacation.’
You must get a handle on your self-talk or you run the risk of self-sabotage.
I truly love helping other entrepreneurs achieve higher levels of success, and I get genuinely excited when I help other entrepreneurs with an idea or tip that helps them get their business going and growing.
When this happens, I honestly feel like a kid in a candy store.
So, I hope these insights will assist you in the growth of your DREAM BUSINESS.
To your success!
Originally aired at Get Jim Palmer.
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I’m a Dream Business Coach and marketing expert, founder of the Dream Business Academy and Dream Business Coaching Program. Find out more at Get Jim Palmer.