A Sunshine Coast mum is taking Australia’s multi-million dollar coaching industry to the net, launching one of the world’s first e-platforms for coaches in a variety of fields.
Sophie Laker started her career in accountancy, helping both private and business clients. Constantly providing advice to customers relating to all things business finance, Laker felt moving to the Business Coaching sector was a natural next step. It wasn’t long before she found a gap in the industry.
“I attended a seminar focused on becoming a coach,” Sophie tells Dynamic Business. “I realised that building a presence as a coach and engaging new clients was both costly and time consuming. It would have been great to register with one service provider that helped me market my products and services as well as book sessions with coaches and accept online payments.”
Sophie Laker, Coach Community
Sophie says she found it frustrating that one would be forced to source different coaches from different areas, depending who they are accredited by and what industry they focused on.
“It would be far better that wherever coaches received their qualifications from, you could still be found them the same place. It would help the customer find the best possible coach for their needs without the hassle of wide-spread searches.”
Coach Community was born. A multi-user platform where coaches and coachees can come together in an online environment that is mutually beneficial, Coach Community is on track to become a one-stop shop for the industry.
“The concept of Coach Community is simple: To be the first virtual meeting place for professional coaches offering their products and services and also individuals who are looking for coaching personally,” Sophie says.
“Having the ability to have your own webpage, diary for appointments and downloadable coaching materials and courses are a massive value add for the coach.”
Coaches can sign up in under two minutes, personalise their profile page with content and a logo, upload copies of their qualifications, and set their own fees. In turn, coachees can have a database of coaches from which to pick from.
Sophie says she is “fiercely proud” of the fact that the venture has been self-funded from the beginning.
“Since my initial blueprint many thousands of dollars have been invested personally to get the project to where it is today, but there is a great deal that I still have to introduce in order to truly revolutionise the coaching world! This will be funded with organic growth. As per our mission statement; ‘the online coaching community, built by you’ ”
Coach Community is on the growth path. The more coaches and coachees hit the platform, the stronger the demand for both sides becomes. It’s a win-win business, one that Sophie is determined to make global.
“In the daunting world of being a new coach, we offer people a true online presence on a high profile and professional website that is a state-of-the-art, well marketed and soon-to-become-global platform. These features are a massive bonus to any small business; allowing them to develop and grow alongside our successes,” Sophie says.
“I hope to launch Coach Community in England later on this year and in America early next year. I’m always on the look out for new technologies that will be of benefit to the coaching community, so stay tuned.”