I would speak to coaches over the years who would give me some version of “I’m good at coaching, people I speak to give me great feedback about their conversation with me and how it has helped them, but I’m struggling to get clients” or “I’m uncomfortable with sales” or “I’m not sure why people aren’t hiring me.”
Now, I found over the years that whilst there may be some sales skills to learn, selling coaching is different than selling products like a car or a personal service such as a haircut.
Coaching typically costs more money than other personal services and isn’t a standardised commodity. Coaching from Coach A is often very different from coaching from Coach B. There isn’t as much variety in personal services, such as getting your hair cut (no matter what your hairdresser might tell you).
The good news for me was when I realised that the best way of selling coaching is to coach, and coaching is the thing that I enjoy. Coaching is the thing most coaches enjoy. So rather than learning some sales pattern or a technique, which people were telling me I needed to do to be successful in this industry, I simply needed to give people an experience of my coaching.
I did this in many ways, from having conversations with people who had some kind of challenge through doing coaching demos (which I recorded and put up on my Facebook group) or writing about a coaching breakthrough that a client might have had on social media.
The more people experienced my coaching, ideally in a conversation, the more my business grew and the more clients I had. I realised that I wasn’t selling my coaching in the way that I thought I was. Instead, I was simply presenting my services to people and allowing them to decide whether they wanted more of this.
This reduced a lot of my discomfort around selling because I had seen selling as akin to convincing someone to give me money for something they might not want or need. No surprise that when I used to think that way, I didn’t make much money as a coach.
On the topic of money, one of the books in the AJC 2023 curriculum that we’ll be reading together is Overcoming Underearning By Barbara Stanny. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to look candidly at their relationship with money. If you’re going to shift that in your life, read this book and do all the exercises in it. You’ll thank me that you did.
With love and appreciation,
Coach and Author of Sweet Sharing – Rediscovering the REAL You