When you are running a business, there are many moving parts, and often, you forget to focus on what is important because you try to put out fires. A good business coach can be beneficial for deciding priorities, planning, and accountability.
However, there are a lot of scammers in this industry, and you should vet your coaches carefully. Here is what I learned while vetting a business coach.
If they push you for a close on a discovery call, run!
Pushing can also manifest as guilting you when you are reluctant to accept working with them: "I get it, you are not ready to commit to business success" or "I work only with decisive people." This behavior is a major red flag, and you should stop talking to this coach.
Here are 3 more steps to verify a coach after the initial discussion:
1. Get more than one call with previous clients.
If you can't get a call with any of his previous clients, chances are the reviews are fake, and the coach is a scammer.
Also, if clients don't say anything wrong about them, beware. Ask, "That is great! Was there anything you didn't like about John?" and they say no, this could be a warning sign. At least get another previous client on a call. Usually, paid fake clients won't have anything bad to say
2. Check their business credentials.
Check their previous activity in the business sector. What businesses did the coach start? Was he successful? Is he still active in the industry? Also, check the validity of the data they have shown on their website. Beware of fake sites, as this is a common practice.
There are a lot of good examples of successful businesspeople that loved coaching/consulting and switched to doing it full-time.
3. They should have consistent online activity.
A great way to figure out if the coach is solid is by checking their online activity over time. Consistency is key. In the discovery call, ask them what social platforms are the most active and check that platform for activity.Don't give up just because they are not active on your platforms of choice. I've worked with a coach with very low activity on Twitter/Linkedin but was very active on the FastlaneForum. Consistency is essential, not the platform.
If the coach passed all these steps, you found yourself a great coach, and I encourage you to work with them. I wish you well in your ventures, and let's connect on Twitter!