From time to time you’re likely to encounter some challenge or obstacle in your business that you can’t overcome on your own. That’s when a business coach can be a game changer. They can provide insights, expertise, experience and guidance to get you and your business moving forward again. Here are the hurdles you will encounter when you look to hire an interior design business coach.
When to Hire an Interior Design Business Coach
Common problems a business coach can help with include:
- Feeling stuck and unable to get unstuck
- Low or no business growth
- Loss of revenue
- Poor profitability
On the other hand, if you have a highly successful business, a business coach may be just what you need to take it to the next level. They will help you enter new markets, develop new sources of revenue, or create a long-range plan that looks forward to retirement and/or leaving a legacy.
You’re probably used to solving business problems all the time, so you may be wondering would working with a business coach really make that much difference, would it be worth the cost? According to one study, 90% of business leaders will see an improvement from working with a business coach. Satisfied clients reported a 22% increase in profitability and a 53% increase in productivity.
What to Look for in a Business Coach
When you look to hire an interior design business coach, there are more than a few questions you should be asking anyone that you interview.
The first thing to know is that there are different kinds of business coaches, beginning with their level of experience and expertise. Some are generalists, while others specialize in financial issues, leadership and team development issues, or visioning, setting goals and planning. In addition, some coaches have a directorial style, some are more collaborative, and some prefer to provide guidance and encouragement. You need to be clear in your own mind about what you need help with. if you do, you’re more likely to select the right type and right style of coach for you.
As you would with any other hire, you want to do a thorough search of the type of business coach you’re looking for. Inquire in your network for recommendations then interview several who appear to be a good fit. Be sure to check out references of previous clients. During the interview ask about how long they have been coaching, what they did before they became a coach, how many and what types of clients they have, how they prefer to work with clients, what type of time commitment will be involved, and their fee structure. Also inquire about what kind of support they provide. How often do they check in with clients to see how they’re doing, how accessible are they, do they have a community of clients or peer groups they can connect you to, do they hold events (live or virtual) on business or leadership topics from time to time?
You also want to make sure that you have a good rapport with the individual and that their answers are clear, open and frank. Pay attention to little details, such as whether they are communicative and responsive when setting up the initial interview. Do they seem to be well organized, do they keep the appointment and show up on time? Listen to your gut feelings.
What a Business Coach Will Look for From You
Coaching is a two-way street. Any interior design business coach you hire will want to make sure that you’re ready to make the commitment to devote the time, be receptive to coaching, and do the work necessary to get the results you want.
Be prepared for the coach to ask you a number of questions about your business. Get ready to answer questions such as how many members are on your team and how well your team is working. What are your revenues and profit margin, what are your goals, what issues do you want to work on? What do you see as your business’s current biggest challenges and opportunities? They also are likely to ask if you’ve ever worked with a business coach before and, if so, what was your experience and why did you stop working with them.
You have to be willing to discuss the hard questions, disclose information about your business operations, and be frank about how your business is doing. You need to accept that you will be challenged, that you may get some advice that you’re uncomfortable with. More personally, you will be asked to spend time examining your own leadership style and possibly personal issues that may be affecting your business or your interaction with your team.
How Much Will a Business Coach Cost?
Costs vary depending on the type of coach, their level of experience and reputation, and the time needed to address the issues you want to work on. Some coaches charge by the hour, typically between $150 to $350 per hour. Some offer programs to focus on developing particular business or leadership skills and charge a set fee for the program. Others offer packages of various kinds that might include a certain number of hours or achieving certain objectives to goals. Our firm, which offers full-service business coaching exclusively for interior design business owners and is looking to establish long-term relationships with clients, advises prospective clients to think of engaging us as hiring another employee.
Admittedly, some prospective clients experience sticker shock when they first inquire about hiring a business coach. However, as the figures cited above show, they come to find that this investment in their business pays for itself many times over in increased revenues, higher profits, business growth, and greater productivity. Ultimately, when you hire an interior design business coach, you’re investing in your company’s future.