One of the great myths in business is that entrepreneurs succeed alone. The truth is that people need people. People teach us. They inspire us. They challenge us to do things differently. And, sometimes, they make us tear out our hair in frustration. Still – cultivating the right people is essential for growing your business and your skills as a business owner.
Because behind every Steve Jobs, there’s a Steve Wozniak, and behind every Mark Zuckerberg there’s an Eduardo Saverin. And it’s not just business owners. Arguably the greatest basketball player of all time, Michael Jordan, was first taught to play by his older brother Larry Jordan.
So, if your business isn’t growing or if you’re struggling to take your business to the next level, look at the people around you. You don’t need a Silicon Valley mentor or professional athletics teacher to inspire you, but if you’re lacking guidance, it may be worth seeking a business professional.
Here’s four instances when you should consider contacting a business coach.
- When you can’t see the big picture
Businesses are moving faster than ever; it’s part of thriving in the new millennium. The downside of this is that many businesses rush through their formative stages, and in the process miss getting the basics right. And, this can cause big problems later on.
Signs that your business’s fundamentals are not properly in place include the following. One, you’re spending more time on the minutiae of everyday operations than on big picture planning. Two, your schedule is filled with admin and non-essential tasks. Three, you can’t take time off for fear that your business will grind to a halt without you.
These things can lead to unnecessary stresses, missed opportunities, and breakdowns in communication, all of which can impede growth and your overall satisfaction as a business owner. If any of this sounds familiar, then it may be time to seek outside help in order to get the foundation of your business right.
- When you’re not thinking differently
In 1997, Steve Jobs challenged Apple and the computer industry as a whole, to ‘think different’. It was more than a marketing slogan. It was a mission statement for a company that was desperately in need of change. And this shift in company mentality has since gone down as a pivotal moment in Apple’s history.
Your changes don’t have to be as radical, but they do have to enhance your business.
Competition in Australia has never been fiercer, and increasingly it’s the businesses which innovate that thrive. Therefore, if you’re not thinking and rethinking, engaging fresh perspectives, and constantly looking to improve your service offering, you could find yourself behind your competitors, fast.
A business coach can help you to gain a new perspective on your business. They can show you how to gain valuable insights from customers and employees. And they can show you how to rid yourself of the thinking that holds you and your business back.
By providing an unbiased outlook, a business coach can give you the confidence you need in order to change and grow your business.
- When you don’t have a clear plan for growth
What is your business plan for the next 12 months? What are your milestones and growth goals? What are you going to do, today, in order to meet those targets?
If you found it difficult to answer any of the above questions, chances are your business doesn’t have a clear plan for growth. And that’s a problem. Because a roadmap is vital for driving your business forward.
Your plan doesn’t have to be comprehensive but it does have to analyse and benchmark your business’s current standing. It has to identify clear targets for growth and, most importantly, it has to outline what you can do every day to work toward those targets.
A solid business plan should keep you focused. It should ensure accountability in meeting milestones. It should also be flexible enough to adapt to unexpected challenges while remaining true to your overall objectives. A business coach can help you to craft this kind of plan.
- When you don’t know where to go next
It’s a common misconception that people only turn to business coaches when things are going badly or when they’re just starting out. This isn’t true. Many business owners approach a business coach when they’re succeeding but unsure of where to take their business next.
Building a business from nothing to success can be hard. Transitioning a business from good to great can be ever harder. It’s not uncommon for business owners to reach a level of success, before thinking simply, now what? Where do I go from here?
A good business coach won’t answer these questions for you, but they will give you the tools you need to find the answers yourself.
Finally, a business coach can be a confidential and impartial third party for you to bounce ideas off of. They can provide you with feedback based on real industry experience. And they can help you to create a vision, which takes you and your business to the next level.
About the author
This article was supplied by Stefan Kazakis, founding Principal of Business Benchmark Group. Stefan has over 25 years experience as a business owner. He is also the author of, From Deadwood To Diamonds: How Small Business Owners Can Come Back From the Brink and Achieve Big Business Success.