Ep 161 – The Identify Shift in Transition to Full Time Coaching

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Episode Transcript

This episode is for new coaches who are shifting into full time coaching from a full time job. That transition is a big leap mentally and emotionally.

Building a business and then sustaining it is an amazing personal journey. More and more people are deciding to be their own boss because they want to have more lifestyle freedom and to be at the cause of their own circumstances.

But if you are taking the leap from employment into entrepreneurship it’s no small thing. There are big shifts that require mindset mastery as you transition.

  • You go from being directed by a boss to supervising yourself in every way.
  • You go from a defined infrastructure and role to creating your own systems and functions from scratch.
  • You go from working collaboratively to working alone, at least at first.
  • You had a regular paycheck, which will become an irregular income you have to generate on your own.
  • Someone else administered your payroll, taxes and benefits and now you’ll manage that yourself.
  • And, you leave behind an established organizational culture and your own reputation and now you’re going to have to create a new one.

It’s an identity crisis.

The truth is that your identity is more innate than you think. Plus, all of your core values, talents and skills come with you into your business. I would even argue that you get to be more of yourself and bring more of yourself to your business.

Look, you’re a multifaceted being. Starting your coaching business is a chance at a makeover where you get to be a better you. And that is enormously satisfying, and I think totally worth the adventure.

Leverage Your Background Into Your Coaching Niche

Last year, one of my VIP clients was shifting from a career of nearly two decades, all in one industry, into her own coaching business. Her previous position had status, significant responsibilities and a salary to match.

And, understandably, she was terrified about shifting to full time self employment as a coach.

Fortunately for her she decided to leverage her work experience by choosing a related audience and niche. And this is something I highly recommend to coaches when they can.

She had instant credibility with her audience because she had been where they are now. And, it was easy to put together relevant messaging and offers because she knew the context her audience lives in.

So, leveraging your background into your target audience and coaching niche will somewhat reduce the stress of the transition because there’s common ground into the thing you’re going to be doing.

But when you’re a free agent you’ll need to think a bit differently.

Now, I come from a family of entrepreneurs. My mom owned apartment buildings while I was growing up. Later, she became a realtor and started her own private brokerage.

My oldest brother is a serial entrepreneur starting with his own graphic design company, then a gluten free bakery and now sells his own graphic art. Another on my brothers had his own company too and my third brother has been an actor, producing his own shows for decades. All of those are entrepreneurial

And I didn’t realize until well into my business that coming from a family of entrepreneurs gave me a leg up. A free agent mindset was part of the culture I grew up in. And the freedom that comes from entrepreneurship was highly valued by my people.

Now you may not have the advantage of being surrounded by entrepreneurs so you’ll have to learn it.

7 Ways to Make Your Transition to Being An Entrepreneurial Coach Easier

  1. Let your fear be your fuel.

And don’t let fear control you. Look, everyone entering new territory feels fear. It’s natural. It’s uncomfortable but it’s not life threatening. So make the feeling of it work for you by dedicating yourself to your business success and stepping fully into the CEO role.

That’s, by the way, how you will feel more comfortable over time and you won’t worry about fear even when you feel it.

2. Hire a business coach.

If you want to do things right the first time and wade into the experience rather than diving into the deep end all on your own, find a mentor who will hold your hand through the first 5 months.

3. See your mistakes as opportunities.

I know you’ve heard this before but truly this is entrepreneurship 101. You can’t survive this if you get uptight about every mistake you make because you’re going to make a lot … and that’s how you learn … and that’s how you’ll become a success.

4. Create a grounding morning routine and stick to it.

Hopefully you already have one of these but if you don’t this is time to change this. A daily walk or other exercise, meditation and a good breakfast helps you to sail through the week.

5. Think both intuitively and strategically about everything.

Whether it’s planning, who you talk to or how you spend your time, where your money goes – all of that!

6. Look for a platform that will help your star rise.

No one succeeds alone. Who or what organization can help you reach your audience and confirm your credibility for them?

I was very lucky that in my 3rd year of coaching, Coach Training Alliance asked me to be a trainer and create their certification program. That put me in front of an avid audience of coach and was perfect for me.

7. Be a good boss.

Put boundaries around your business. Create space in your calendar for you. Celebrate your wins. Look for ways to continuously improve. Give yourself a promotion by raising your fees. And review what’s going on in your business and how you’re going to do things differently.

I know you’re going to be able to weather your transition to full time coaching. Entrepreneurship is different and it’s boundless. You never know what you’ll end up learning or doing. Your business will bring you wonderful surprises and help you become a better you.