Running a new business is like riding a roller coaster. One moment, things are looking great for your company and you are being super productive. Next thing you know, everything starts to look like it’s falling apart.
It’s not uncommon for a business owner to reach a point when they say, “I’m not sure what to do next.” Many entrepreneurs go through this roller coaster.
When your startup gets stuck in a rut, there is someone who can help you. You can improve your skills as the leader of your startup, increase revenue, and gain insights into how to run a business by hiring a business coach.
Here are some telltale signs your business needs a business coach.
What is Business Coaching?
A business coach is a seasoned business owner or entrepreneur who leverages their talent to help developing and growing startups and business owners reach their goals. According to the International Coaching Federation, 86% of businesses that utilize coaching have seen a return of investment.
A business coach doesn’t just work with the head of the business. They take a more holistic view of the entire startup, instead of just focusing on the individual.
Even though a lot of conversations revolve around what behaviours the coachee needs to work on, a business coach has a great impact on the entire company because of their role. A business coach can offer you valuable, personalised, and customised advice.
You Don’t See a Clear Path Forward
Do any of these cases apply to your business?
- The startup’s direction has changed several times over the course of a couple of months.
- Occasionally, you struggle to understand your role as a leader.
- You don’t have clear plans or sets of priorities written down.
- You are not sure what your day-to-day tasks should be.
If you are a CEO or a founder of a startup, you probably have your hands in all parts of the company. Startup CEOs are typically jacks of all trades, and they often have an urgent and hectic air about them.
This can be a hard habit to break when you need to take a step back to lead the company. If you always perform every task yourself, even the ones you can easily delegate to a lower-level employee, it’s easy to get lost.
Business coaching can help you establish your role and responsibilities as your startup’s leader. Not only can a business coach help you figure out what are your company’s strategic goals, but they can help you write out responsibilities in conjunction with those goals.
This will directly help you align your activities with the results you want to achieve. If you have the impulse to do everything in your business, a business coach can also help you let it go.
If you’re constantly wondering when’s the last time you went home on time or had a vacation, chances are that you are overwhelmed. If you are starting to feel emotionally drained and overwhelmed because you are having a hard time setting boundaries at work, you may be experiencing burnout—a problem that is especially common in the tech industry.
You need to ask yourself whether the everyday tasks you carry out are moving your startup towards its goal. Quite often, business leaders spend too much time on tasks that aren’t productive, even though they feel like they are doing the right things.
You may feel like you can’t turn to anyone else in your business for answers when you are overwhelmed. Even if you know in the back of your mind that one of your employees may have a better idea, you might start using only your own ideas.
Your business coach will take an objective look at your tasks and how you perform them. Then, they can teach you how to efficiently perform the tasks that should remain your duty, and list which tasks you should delegate to your employees.
You Need More Accountability
Perhaps you’re having a hard time meeting your goals even after you’ve written down everything you want to achieve for your business and yourself. This doesn’t mean you should write them off as being unrealistic.
Instead, ask yourself, “Am I really pushing myself to do everything I can to meet our goals?” Breaking a promise to yourself is all too easy. This may mean you lack accountability.
You can call upon a friend or family member to hold you accountable to your professional and business goals. But, they may not know how to do so. Plus, if you fail, it may put a strain on your relationship.
It’s the job of your business coach to be your accountability buddy. Unlike your friends or your spouse, your business coach knows exactly what you are going through. They will know how to stop you from making excuses which might be holding you back.
Of course, your coach won’t just hold you accountable. They will tell you where you’re losing time and effort by looking at your tasks closely and objectively.
An even bigger problem for startups is when the whole team struggles with accountability. When we are talking about teams, accountability is difficult to develop because it doesn’t just fall on one employee.
Accountability issues within a team occur when there’s a lack of trust, lack of healthy communication and feedback, and no alignment around a core vision or purpose.
If this is your first startup, you may not have enough experience with building teams where employees can thrive off of each other. There are corporate coaching packages that are designed to build accountability within teams and help every employee in the business reach their maximum potential.
You’re in a Rut
Do you have some uncertainty related to the growth of your startup? Decisions that can disrupt your operations are difficult to make, even if you have an ambitious entrepreneurial spirit.
Instead of allowing your business to fall into a rut, get a business coach that will guide you on how to successfully implement a strategic plan to grow your startup. They will help you gain the perspective and confidence you need to plan and execute strategies.
You Want to Develop New Skills
Everyone can find ways to improve themselves—both those who lack confidence in their leadership and those who have been commended for their natural ability to lead a business.
Leadership is not the only skill you should work on to improve your startup. You may need to develop skills in finance, new technology, or negotiating in order to keep your business ahead of the curve. The same goes for your team as well.
By doing your research, you can find a business coach that will help you develop the specific skill set you need. For instance, you should look for a coach you are comfortable opening up to if you want to work on soft skills, such as negotiation and leadership.
You can also hire a coach to help you, or your employees, develop a specific hard skill, such as logistics or finance. To see whether the coach can help you learn those skills, ask for testimonials from their past clients.
There’s no definite answer for when you should hire a business coach. Every startup’s progression is different, and every business owner is different. If you don’t know when is the right time for you to hire a business coach for your startup, a good benchmark for it is when you say, “I’m not sure what to do next.”