The secret is to enrolling more coaching clients is surprising. Don’t coach them in the discovery session.
Many coaches find their prospective clients walk away from a sample coaching session feeling “done”. It may be because a sample session is oriented around selling coaching rather than attracting the individual to what they already know they want — the vision of their ideal future.
If you want to transform your ability to enroll new clients, engage them in their own story and vision. Help them feel the gap between where they are now and where they want to be. Then tell them how you can help them close that gap.
It’s true. The make or break factors in coaching business success are rarely about education, specific business skills, or experience. Instead, it all comes down to how you manage your mind.
Nearly all my clients have struggled with believing in themselves at one moment or another. I’ve struggled with it on and off myself. What’s pulled me forward again and again is a BIG WHY. With all my heart I want to serve and earn with the freedom to do it my way. Over the years I’ve learned to use obstacles as my prosperous path.
Change Your Mind
When you break through, it’s a shift in perspective that does it. You simply change your mind. Suddenly, what seemed like a steel wall in your way becomes a wisp of cloud. If the steel wall persists, it’s not because it’s real. It’s just waiting for you to see the wall come down. You have the power.
There’s a simple tool you can deploy whenever you feel that knife edge of wanting to give up: Turn what feels like a big deal into no-big-deal. Release your fixation on whatever you think is lacking and put their focus back on serving.
Move forward like a toddler reaching for a toy – with joy and determination.
It’s a good question.
Once I would have said “no”. Fresh out of coaching school in 1997, I was a purist and believed a coach has to be in real time connection with their client for coaching to be effective.
Now, 15 years into coaching, I’d say “yes” as one of several ways you effect change with clients. Sometimes small incremental shifts have a huge impact. Those kinds of shifts are absolutely possible through online coaching.
Think of it this way, have you ever read a passage in a book that transformed your thinking? Then you know that a powerful question or message can do the same thing online.
There is one caveat…
As a coach, have you ever thought “Who am I to…?” Fears like this show up when you take the smart step of focusing on one unique tribe of people — a niche market — and begin to put the word out that you can help them get where they want to go. The underlying thought is: “How can I charge for this if I haven’t accomplished for myself the things my clients want to accomplish!” And then you fall into a spiral of doubt and start back pedaling.
I hear you. But keep moving forward by embracing your beginner’s mind.
In any new job, career or business direction there is the absolute necessity to be new, untried and unproven at first. You are required to be a beginner and learn from doing. There’s no shame in it.
In fact, a fresh perspective is THE POINT of coaching.
Many years ago, Thomas Leonard, founder of the first coach training school and the “father of life coaching,” said:
Never want more for your clients than they want for themselves.
That woke me up! I began to examine my motivations and set healthier boundaries for myself with clients.
Have you ever sensed that you might want too much for your clients?
Most coaches fall into this trap on some level, until they let go of their desire to effect change on their clients, and replace it with an understanding that what is best for the client is only what the client is ready to commit to change within themselves right now.
As a coach you have it made in the shade! But sometimes you don’t realize it. The skills you use to coach — listening, asking powerful questions, intuiting, using perspective, messaging, reframing — are aces for enrolling too.
But sometimes when you’re enrolling new clients, fear sneaks in on little cat’s feet and you forget all that you have going for you. Here’s how it happens:
Things are going along swimmingly in a sample session, enrolling consult or preview teleseminar. You are connecting with potential clients, enjoying them, engaging with curiosity. Then, when it comes time to invite them to take a next step with you, you shift… in dramatic ways like when Dr. Jekyl turns into Mr Hyde:
Suddenly you’re performing when you were connecting.
Suddenly you are attached to outcome when before you were detached.
Suddenly it’s all about you when before it was all about them.
But in fact, nothing had to change.