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Best Coaching Blogs Triumph Despite Historic India Power Outage

Posted by Julia Stewart

Best Coaching Blogs 2012The votes are in and the 1st Place winner of Best Coaching Blogs 2012 is Life Coach Vatsala Shukla of India, who did a brilliant job of mobilizing her voters, despite India's massive 2-day power outage, which plunged one tenth of the world's population into darkness, making it the biggest loss of electrical power in world history.

Since its first year in 2008, Best Coaching Blogs finalists have been  decided by a combination of popular votes and comments left by fans. But in the end, the contest finalists themselves, choose 1st, 2nd and 3rd Place winners via a closed ballot.

There were key changes in this year's contest, which for the first time, was formatted like a blog. Each blog entry appeared as a separate blog 'post', with a link to the blog itself, plus a comments section and social sharing buttons, like those at the top of this post. Social shares counted as votes and comments were used as tie-breakers. The  'down vote' option that coaches disliked in previous years, was removed and voters were allowed to vote as many times as they liked. This produced a competition that was both more cordial and more social.

Vatsala's Tips for a Stress Free Life Blog quickly took the lead in both popular votes (social shares) and comments and it prevailed in the finalist's closed vote. 2nd Place went to Evelyn Kalinowsky's Inner Affluence blog and 3rd to Gerard Corbett's PR Job Coach blog. Rachel Grant Coaching blog and Andrea Feinberg's More Free Time blog rounded out the Top Five Winners. Angela Goodeve's* new blog, Life Advice the Coaching Way, received an Honorable Mention.

Congratulations again to all the new winners! Below are statements from three:

1st Place: Vatsala Shukla: "My blog Vatsala’s Tips for a Stress Free Life had just completed its first year of existence. Entering the competition was my challenge to improve myself.  Friends and associates told me my posts were good. That was expected as they know Vatsala the person in all her multi-roles of finance professional, life coach, daughter, pet parent and friend. They understood the context in my writing. What about the world? Was my blog up to the mark? So I entered the competition and was accepted. I was elated. It was only after I started reading the blogs of my fellow competitors that I realised that I was competing with the best of the best. My challenge to step out of my comfort zone went a step further to hold my ground against great veteran bloggers whom I have over the last 4 weeks added to my must read list! Receiving the largest public votes and comments was confirmation that readers liked what they read. Winning from the finalist voting round validated it. I am overwhelmed, humbled and grateful for my win which means a lot more to me than I can articulate. My next challenge is to honour the voters and finalists by being my best."

Top Five: Andrea Feinberg: "Thanks for the opportunity to participate in this contest and end up a winner among the Top 5, my first time! We each have such different targets and I see that as a testament to the swift and broad expansion of professional coaching throughout personal and business sectors. Congratulations to my fellow finalists; we enjoyed the validation of our work through the strength of our supporters who both voted and commented on our behalf."

Honorable Mention: Angela Goodeve: "Yay!!!  Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you!  It was a great experience participating in the contest, and I am so flattered and proud to be given the Honorable Mention!  I love writing the blog posts in the hope that they will provide inspiration, "food for thought", tips, and guidance to improve people's life for the better...and give them an idea of what the wonderful world of Life Coaching can do for them!  I am grateful to you Julia for being a great Mentor and Teacher, and for challenging me to join the contest, and open up more possibilities for me and my business!"

As always, the Best Coaching Blogs Contest is a fun way to expand the conversation about the benefits of  business and life coaching. Plus it highlights the many varied approaches that coaches take to empower their clients and it builds awareness of the incredible growth of professional coaching, which continues to be the second fastest growing profession is the world.

Thanks to the coaching bloggers who participated. I hope you all attracted new readers and clients by taking the courageous step to enter your blog. I look forward to next year's contest and the connections that are built between coaching bloggers themsleves, as well as  with their new fans.

Congratulate the coaching winners below and visit the Best Coaching Blogs 2012 .

Become a coaching blogger yourself! Download the free "How to Blog Effectively for Your Coaching Business" eBook: Free Blogging eBook

 

Download Now.

 

 

*Full disclosure: Angela Goodeve is a life coach student at School of Coaching Mastery.

Topics: business coach, professional coach, life coach, Coaching Student, Best Coaching Blogs, blog, blogs, blogging, blogosphere, Career

Beyond Coaching Questions: The Conversations That Coaches Dread

Posted by Julia Stewart

Dreaded coaching conversationsMy colleague and friend, Deborah Brown-Volkman, and I are planning a coaching communications project that moves beyond, ‘Which coaching questions should I ask?’ and covers the trickiest and stickiest conversations that professional coaches must have, but often dread.

 

 

You know the coaching conversations that give you sweaty palms:
  • How do you handle the client who doesn’t pay you on time?
  • How do you tell your client that you really can’t give them an extra 20-30 minutes every week?
  • How do you tell your client that s/he needs therapy instead of coaching?
  • What do you say to the client who ‘can’t afford’ you?
  • How do you raise your fees without losing your clients?
  • [insert your dreaded client conversation question here]

My students and mentees ask me these questions everyday, but Deborah and I are creating a new resource to give you answers and ideas that are right at your fingertips.


The truth is, as a coach, you need advanced communication skills. And if you don’t have them, your peace of mind will suffer and so will your coaching.

“Success in life is directly proportional to the number of awkward conversations you’re willing to have.” - Anonymous

Do you worry about how to handle touchy conversations with your coaching clients? Then please share which conversations keep you up at night in our comments section, below.

Tell us some of the hardest or most difficult conversations you've had or don't want to have. Your questions about communication best practices for coaches will help shape this project greatly - and will help us to better help you.

Please share your questions below. We’ll be happy to offer answers or methods for finding your own best answers, so you never have to dread having another uncomfortable conversation again. And if you have a great story about how you handled a tough conversation, we’d love to hear it - and you might just help a fellow coach get a good night’s sleep tonight!

[UPDATE: Deborah and I are hosting 4 low-cost live, interactive tele-webinars on how to have the toughest coaching conversations of your career. Click below for more info...]

Click me

Ask your questions about dreaded coaching conversations, below...

Topics: Career, Coaches, coaching clients, Deborah Brown-Volkman, coaching questions, communication

Confused About Becoming a Business or Life Coach?

Posted by Julia Stewart

Confused Business or Life Coach

 

Confusion about your business or life coach career could be destroying your chances.

Why? Confused people don’t act.

The longer you tolerate your confusion and/or your inaction the more you destroy what could be.

Here’s the funny part. If you’re not taking action, it’s probably because you’re waiting until you’re sure what to do. That’s backwards.

Having clarity before you act is a comforting ideal, but sometimes you can’t get clarity until you act. As the preacher said, God can’t steer a parked car...

How can you step out of your confusion and into inspired action that leads you to your goals? Ask yourself some questions.

And as soon as you have the answers, take massive action immediately!

You probably won’t have enough clarity to be certain until you start acting. It’s as simple as that.

I wrote seven questions to help folks like you get clarity about their next steps toward becoming business or life coaches.

Those seven questions are on a page that offers the Ultimate Coach Training Membership Program at a special price. There is a time limit on the special price and only six spots are left.

But I’d rather you asked yourself those questions and decided to do something else than join our ultimate training, than stand around like the guy above, scratching your head and wasting your life. Because if you really are meant to be a master coach, millions of people could use your coaching.

Go here to gBecome a Business or Life Coachet 7 questions to banish your confusion about becoming a business or life coach.

And if you’re serious about business or life coaching, take massive action. Join us while you can save!

Topics: Career, become a life coach, become a coach, become a business coach, master coach, clarifying, coach training program, how to become a coach

Coach Julia Stewart Interviewed by Coach Des Walsh on BlogTalkRadio

Posted by Julia Stewart

Yesterday, Coach Des Walsh interviewed me about careers in coaching, certification, Thomas Leonard, where next for Boomers and where 80% of people are wasting their energy:

 

Topics: Coaching, Career, Coaches, coach, Thomas Leonard

8 Reasons Some Coaches Don't Have Enough Coaching Clients

Posted by Julia Stewart

Coach chasing client

Is It Really So Hard to Get Coaching Clients?

A few weeks ago, a colleague said something to me about 'coaches who can't get clients' and a nerve broke for me. I'm fed up with the image of the coach who's always chasing clients, but never catches them. Chasing doesn't work. But getting clients is simple.

I've heard this whine for years. And it usually comes from people who, themselves, are having a tough time of it. And often they are hanging out with people who are also struggling. Therefore, they reason, it must be hard for everyone.

 Well I'm here to debunk this myth: Coaches DO get clients. Plenty of them.

How do I know that coaches get plenty of clients? Because I mentor them and teach them. It's just as common to for me to hear from coaches who have too many clients and want to redesign their businesses as it is to hear from coaches who don't have enough clients.

Even in 2009, the worst year for the economy that most of us have ever seen, my students were building their businesses with new paying clients. Some of them were supporting their entire families with their new coaching businesses and commanding fees that impressed even me. And veteran coaches reported that they were doing fine. Some were doing better then ever.

Does that mean that coaches didn't notice the recession? Sure we did, but less than you'd think. I noticed a decline in the number of new coaching students, for instance, but the number of coaching clients that I have has stayed steady. 

In every business, some people don't succeed. But if it's a growing business like coaching, you can bet more people are succeeding than failing.

There are 8 reasons why some coaches don't have enough coaching clients:

  1. They're new and they haven't given it enough time, yet.
  2. They still need training.
  3. They haven't defined what 'enough' is.
  4. Their environment isn't supporting them.
  5. They aren't doing enough to succeed.
  6. They're doing the wrong stuff.
  7. They've got shadow issues holding them back.
  8. They're in the wrong business.
All of these eight 'problems' are simple to solve: Get more experience. Get the training you need. Set realistic goals on how many clients (and how much money) you want. Redesign your environment so it supports your business. Work harder and more consistently. Get a better strategy. Work with a coach to get over your garbage. Face the music, if necessary, and change careers.
 
Getting enough coaching clients is simple, but not always easy. But if you really love your work, you'll overcome every challenge, because it's so darn fun.
 
Several years ago, I hit a dry spell in my own coaching business. I had changed my business model and clients weren't coming to me as easily as they had previously. To make matters worse, I was shopping for a home, so it was no time for a reduction in income! Then I remembered my own business-building program, Coach 100, and I decided to take my own medicine.
 
Did I get plenty of clients? Yes. Was it a lot of work? Yes. Was it worth it? Well I love to coach, so yes absolutely! I bought that home, too. And this was before I started the school, so my only income was from my coaching clients.
 
This year, I've had it (Had it!!) with the old lament that coaches have trouble getting clients. That's garbage! So I've launched a new Coach 100 Mentor Program to prove it. It's for coaches who are ready (Really Ready) to get out of the garbage that's been holding them back and step into their true Greatness, thriving business and all.

Don't join us unless you're willing to abandon ALL your old excuses and are willing to do what works in your own unique way and fill your coaching practice once and for all.

There are some sweet deals for the coaches who join the Coach 100 Mentor Group early. If you're tired of making excuses, check it out.

Do you agree or disagree that getting coaching clients is simple? Please share your thoughts in the comments section, below.

Join here.

 

 Check out the Coach 100 Mentor Group here.

 

Topics: coaching business, Coaching, Career, group coaching, money, mentor coach, Coach 100, coaching clients, coach, economy

Career Coaching Spikes Says CNN Money

Posted by Julia Stewart

CNN Money LogoOn September 29th, CNNMoney wrote, "Should You Hire a Career Coach?"

In it, Christopher Metzler, associate dean for human resources studies at Georgetown University, says, "Any time there's an economic downturn, career coaching spikes,"

With job searches now averaging 25 weeks, it's no surprise that the out-of-work are looking for every competitive advantage they can find. And while career coaching is not cheap,  one session averages $161, it more than pays for itself, if you land a great job a few months earlier than you would have otherwise.

There are pitfalls, however. As the article points out, not everyone who calls him/herself a career coach is skilled or qualified to help you reach your goals. And the quality of coach certifications varies widely. Some coach certification training programs take only a weekend to complete, with every participant guaranteed a certificate just for showing up. (I recently spoke to a coach who completed one such program. She confirmed that it was "pretty much a joke.")

Two places you can find career coaches who have pledged their professionalism, are the coaching trade organizations, IAC and ICF. Each has a Find-a-Coach feature. You can also find career coaches at Mastery Coach Exchange, where you can easily connect with and find out about your coach, before trying them out.

Other coaching specialties that do especially well in economic downturns are business and corporate coaching, executive coaching, and money coaching, but even fields like life coaching do surprisingly well, especially now that there are lower-cost options.

Here's the full CNNMoney article on career coaching. Check out their sidebar for more interesting information about it.

Read the Coaching Commons article on the same subject here.

Topics: business coach, corporate coaching, executive coaching, Career, ICF, Coach Certification, Mastery Coach Exchange, Life Coaching, IAC, certified coach, economic downturn, FIND A COACH

Coaching for Non-Coaches: Career Czar Podcast

Posted by Julia Stewart

Career CzarIf you are interested in coaching, but don't want to become a "coachpreneur", the world has caught up with you.

You don't have to call yourself a coach in order to get paid to have transformative conversations, anymore. People in all kinds of professions and industries, from education, to healthcare, to the travel industry, are bringing coaching skills to work with them.

Can you imagine a world where everyone gets coached everyday, at work or at school? I can and I'm liking it!

This is one way you can increase your employ-ability and your promot-ability and love your job more. 

I had a chance to talk with Paul Bruno, the Career Czar(R), about coaching for non-coaches in his weekly alltalkradio.net show.  This short show will give you a few things to think about, as far as becoming a "a coach who doesn't call yourself a coach".

And if you think now is a good time to beef up your coaching skills and your resume, check out our Coach Launch program. It's designed for non-coaches who want to coach. 


Topics: Coaching, Career, coaching skills, coachpreneur, transformative conversations

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