August 02, 2021 by Brittany Salsman
Becoming a life coach is an exciting and challenging journey. Not only do you become a professional life coach, but you also grow personally along the way. As with any growth experience, new life coaches face challenges as they develop their skills and build their confidence. Three of the most common challenges new life coaches face are finding their first clients, trusting the coaching process, deepening their listening and trusting the coaching process.
From a practical standpoint, enrolling your first five clients is greatest challenge. It’s not just because you’re just getting started, but for new coaches it requires you to do many things for the first time all at once: share about the coaching industry, share about your approach, discuss pricing and program structure, answer their questions, make an ask. Managing all these firsts at the same time can feel overwhelming and deplete your confidence as a new life coach. This is why enrolling your first five clients presents a challenge. The key, though, is not to put all this pressure on a single conversation. On average, it takes seven touchpoints for a person to decide they want to make a purchase. This relieves the pressure of cramming all the information into a single conversation. Knowing that you will likely have several touchpoints with a potential client before they choose to enroll is your opportunity to consider how you can strategically stay in contact while also “dripping” the information to potential clients in a way that gives them new information and keeps them coming back for more. A key part of this process is leveraging your skills as a coach. In every step of the enrollment journey, you have an opportunity to weave the experience of coaching into the conversations. This starts with deeply listening with your potential client. This is where the second challenge for new coaches.
For years we’ve learned to listen in order to connect with the other person or to respond to what they’re asking. We are listening for opportunities to share our own stories, our own expertise, our own experiences. As a life coach, though, you listen in a way that removes yourself from this equation. Instead of imagining what it’s like for you to be in your client’s shoes, you are listening from the perspective of your client. What’s it like for them to be in their own shoes? Going back to the challenge of enrolling your first clients, from this deep level of listening, you aren’t concerned about enrolling them. You aren’t concerned with giving them all the information. Instead, you are deeply listening from their perspective to fill in gaps of misunderstanding and serve as a resource in empowering them to make the best decision for themselves. In this way, you’re giving them a taste of what it’ll be like to work with you without them even knowing it. From this standpoint, new coaches are able to trust the process that much more easily.
Oftentimes, new coaches are eager to enroll new clients in a very precise fashion. You create a system or a funnel through which potential clients adventure through the enrollment journey. While this is necessary, just as with coaching exercises and tools, new coaches want to be weary of holding to that system too tightly that you miss the opportunity to enroll a client because you’re more concerned with following the system than following your client. When you create the system, it provides a container for your conversation – a framework that allows you, as the coach, to trust the process. But it doesn’t stop here, once new coaches are able to enroll their first five clients, listen at a deep level, and trust the process of the system they’ve created, this continues into the coach-client relationship after enrollment as well. This creates momentum as a new coach, which ultimately provides space to ask for referrals and the process begins again. Now that you know what challenges you might face and how to manage them, you can start your life coaching journey with a bit more ease. Learn more about CTEDU’s training programs and start today.
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