Building a Coaching Business

Building a Coaching Business

Doing Coaching Research

 Author: Jenny Rogers

Reviewers: Hannah Butler and Richard Wade

The book is aimed at anyone who is considering setting themselves up in business as a coach. I would suggest those already in business would also find it a more than useful read as well. In my opinion it is an excellent, well structured book full of very practical tips and suggestions.

My biggest takeaway came early on in the book when Jenny recommends that the single most important thing that the newly qualified coach can do as they seek to establish themselves is to “keep coaching”. Yes, there is a need to think about things like a website, to consider marketing, to ensure supervision is in place and to consider many other important elements of starting a business, but the most important thing is to keep flexing the coaching muscles and to keep growing, learning and gaining experience.

This is an excellent text to support the development of a coaching, mentoring and/or supervision (CMS) business. It aims to give an underpinning of some of the key points of setting up as a solopreneur. The book is empathetic and shows an understanding of some of the challenges faced by CMS as we explore the highs and lows of business development. My favourite parts are where Jenny Rogers encourages us to explore our business and make decisions about what we stand for and how we can use our values to make our business appealing to our target audience.

The book is very easy to read and is laid out in a logical flow, starting with the most important thing, making sure that you are the best coach you can be. It then goes on to cover a range of topics covering issues such as fees, developing your brand, marketing, selling with integrity and growing your business.

There is also a really helpful chapter which encourages the coach to think like a buyer not a seller. The statement “no one buys coaching” was really powerful for me (in effect what people buy are the specific solutions to specific problems that have resisted every other type of resolution).

I think the book has a clear structure and an easy flow. This is a book you could select any chapter and read it as a singular piece or read from cover to cover and feel like you have taken a course in business development. I feel this book is best read with pens and paper at the ready and really start to use the book as a starting point to explore and interrogate your own business through an alternative less biased lens. The book is well sourced and referenced providing us with rigor and reassurance that this is not some personal diatribe of how to run a successful CMS business. I read this book on the back of completing the EMCC UK Business development programme and found that this embedded and consolidated my knowledge and understanding of some of the tools we covered in the session.

As someone who read this at the point that I was actively thinking about starting my own coaching practice, the timing was perfect. I do think that more experienced coaches will also find it helpful though as well. As well as prompting me to reflect further I took away a list of 13 specific actions that I was going to take having read the book. Examples for me included things such as: getting supervision in place; focusing on building my coaching hours; being clear about my niche/area of expertise; considering my brand promise; how and when to establish my website.

A concise read that offers practical support for people willing to engage beyond the pages. Highly recommended for all those who are either considering establishing their own coaching business or have already done so. Full of lots of very practical advice and guidance.

I will definitely revisit some of my web content and really look for key messages and aim to be more succinct with my values.

In light of Covid and a digital world, I think there needs to be a revised version to cover digital communications and virtual working.