“Roll up! Roll up! Come and get your amazing coaching here!” bellowed the coach.
The shorter the queue, the louder they yelled.
Dwindling, hoarse. Eventually, they ran out of puff and trudged home, exhausted.
Harsh reality. Nobody needs coaching.
People are only interested in what coaching can do for them.
The problem is most coaches focus on selling coaching, rather than building relationships.
Crucially misunderstanding what clients really want.
Understand this and your coaching practice will transform.
Apply this and creating clients will never be the same again.
I’ll tell you what I want, what I really, really want
Ask people what they really want and they’ll tell you.
They want better jobs, better relationships, better health.
They want less suffering, less anxiety, less stress.
They want more income, more freedom, more time.
They want greater adventure, greater experiences, greater opportunities.
They want problems solved, obstacles overcome and fears banished.
They don’t want coaching.
Trust me. Nobody gets up in the morning thinking, “I’m off to the coaching supermarket to pick up some fresh coaching, back in a mo.”
Focus on outcomes
Your clients are only interested in what you can do for them. Not coaching itself.
They’re attracted to the outcomes of coaching. The potential benefits on offer.
In other words, “What’s in it for me.”
They’re focused on the results they want to achieve rather than coaching per se.
Coaching is simply a process to get there.
If you can meet them where their hopes and aspirations are you’ll be in pole position to support them.
Your role is to identify problems. Create inviting space for creativity, shifts in perspective, and action.
There’s two things your clients are most concerned with.
- “Can you help me?”
- “Do you get me?”
Knowing me, knowing you
Knowing this changes everything.
Knowing nobody needs coaching, liberates you from trying to sell coaching. And selling yourself.
You can stop blowing your own trumpet and trying to convert people to coaching.
You can let go of slimy sales tactics and questionable closing techniques. And be present to what is.
The land of possibility
Next time you’re faced with a potential client, remember this.
Stop bigging up coaching and listen to what your client wants most.
If you hear suffering and pain, talk about the impact and release of energy.
If you sense fear and anxiety, lean into what overcoming those emotions might change.
If you see opportunities and challenges, explore the significance of making a difference.
- What are you ready for?
- What’s possible if we worked together?
- How would it be worth it to you?
- Why is it not in your life right now?
Stop making promises
Promising results, outcomes or breakthroughs is the best way to lose trust. All you’re doing is creating a burden of expectation heaped on your shoulders.
Instead, let your potential client experience the power of your service.
Let them get a feel for what might be different if you worked together.
Create an environment for them to see possibilities and feel potential outcomes.
I have never worked with a client without first inviting them to know and feel what a coaching session is like.
I have never made a proposal without understanding what my client really wants.
This is particularly valuable as my coaching is specifically designed around client outcomes.
All clients are created in conversation. One conversation at a time.
Understand it’s not about closing a sale, its about creating a relationship.
- What is the perceived value of working together?
- What possibilities can I see for myself?
- What outcomes do I want to achieve?
- Can you help me with that?
That’s what clients are investing in.
They’ll want what you do, when you’ve given them an experience of creating magic together.
Focus on possibility, not reality.
That’s what they want, not what they need.