Coaching Business Opportunities – When It Pays to Say ‘No’

Is every coaching client you have a pure joy to work with?
Do you consistently find the time to market your coaching business and create new programs?
Are you making a great income from your coaching business?

If you answer ‘no’ to any of these questions, you’re not alone. Most coaches grapple with these issues.

Years ago, that was me. I was working very hard, and getting by, but not having the experience I hoped for.

And here’s why… I’d take on nearly any client, any speaking opportunity, say ‘yes’ to every proposal. I’d leap at all the bright shiny objects, never realizing how they wasted my time and energy. I figured, any client at any price is better than none, and any opportunity available now shouldn’t be passed up.

The bottom line: I was operating from a scarcity mindset. I didn’t value my own time highly enough to be choosy about the opportunities I pursued. I didn’t believe in my ability to attract enough ideal clients and opportunities.

Eventually, I came to see that I was trapped in a Catch-22 — I couldn’t find time to make more money. My least ideal clients took the most time and made the slowest progress. Most of those so-called opportunities that dropped into my lap took tremendous energy but brought poor returns on my investment.

80% of my energy was tied up in activities that paid only 20% of my income.

What finally changed? I did. I gave my business habits a complete makeover. I resolved to:

  1. Make decisions as if my coaching practice is full all the time.
  2. Highly value every hour of my time and charge rates that show that.
  3. Hold high standards for the kind of clients I bring into my practice.
  4. Run all opportunities through success criteria and only accept the right ones.

I’ll have more to say about success criteria in a future post. For now, let’s just recognize that saying ‘no’ to some of the opportunities that come your way is what successful business owners do.

When you have a successful coaching business, you become picky about who you coach, where you speak publicly, where you network, and how you market. You treat every hour of your time as if it were worth a large sum of money, and make sure that for every effort you’re getting a high return on your investment.

Why not start those good habits now and see what happens?

When I made those shifts in my habits:

  • My satisfaction with my coaching practice soared, because all my clients were ideal.
  • My clients stayed longer, made more progress, and referred more clients.
  • The marketing opportunities I said ‘yes’ to put me in front of more ideal prospects, generating more qualified leads and boosting my revenue.

My income doubled while I worked fewer hours, leaving me time for more clients and high payoff opportunities.

Of course, this is not about giving yourself an excuse to do less and stay small in your business. It is about saying ‘no’ to time-wasters and low payoff opportunities, in order to invest the energy you save into the highest payoff actions you can take to build your business.

You know what the high payoff actions are. They are the ones that take you out of your comfort zone and into new territory. That’s where the coaching business you envision can come to life.