Today I’m chatting with my friend Bess Blanco. She’s building a thriving health coaching business by nurturing relationships with her clients and helping them to be the best they can be. I’ve asked her to answer some questions for you, to help you decide if a coaching business may be for you as well.
What are the basic start-up costs? and What ongoing costs can I expect?
When I first started my health coach biz in early 2011, I only invested the hosting money for a website (like $10 a month?) and bought a few supplies, like “how-to coach” books and ink and paper! Literally, that was IT! Hee hee – oh how times have changed 😉 Later, I added the expenses of hiring business coaches, joining masterminds, and other “overhead” type costs, but I TRULY feel that those are NOT absolutely necessary to find success, and although I do credit those expenses with adding to my success, they often proved to be a distraction, or creative procrastination! Success is achievable without them!
What skills are required?
The beauty of coaching is that the skills that are required are often skill sets you already have or are already operating in. In fact, that is what drew me in to this opportunity in the first place! The confidence that I was already informally “coaching” others in my life and now I could actually turn those skills into a career excited me! Another thing I figured out was that although I most certainly need to develop my skills daily, they are not why my clients coach with me. People want to know you care before they trust you with their private lives and heart issues, so I have made listening to them and genuinely caring about them my number one skill!
Tell me about the learning curve
I have truly enjoyed the challenges I have faced as I build my coaching business (though not always while in the midst of them!) I’ve learned more about the techie world, online etiquette and language, and communication aspect of interpersonal relationships than I ever thought I might! I feel like I’ve received a college education-worth amount of learning in the past 3 years on these topics and more! (Now if only there was a piece of paper for that!)
I feel there is tremendous potential for income in this business, but I am finding that it is NOT overnight success! Its lots and lots of freely given hours as I build this influence and presence on the internet and in my community. Its hard work with little pay initially, and then it begins to turn around. I always tell my mentoring students to make sure that they are NOT desperate for income from this biz initially (make sure bills are paid some other way for a while) so that the $$$ don’t blind them out of desperation – money-motivated decisions in a “care business” like this is not only unhealthy, but will bring irreparable damage.
What are the time requirements?
My second love and reason for remaining in this biz (after the changing lives part!) is the flexibility! I am married and have 4 young kids (age 5 to 15) so I need the flexibility to fit it around my life! Time management has been one of the TOP skills I’ve learned over the last 3 years, and it’s VITAL to the success of the biz in my life balance!
Can you give us a picture of a “typical week”?
A typical Week for me looks like this:
Mondays are BIG “work days” – client calls, webinars, appearances, social media relationship-building etc.
Tuesdays are just as big, but with more “behind the scenes” work like staff meetings for my organization, writing and blog posting, FB group admin work, etc. Wednesdays are filled with writing , client calls, FB chats, etc.
Thursdays & Fridays are more offline meetings and work, with FRESH Start groups and functions, as well as more family stuff like doctor appointments, errands and fun time.
So in a nutshell, Mon thru Wed are my big “coaching” days!
I absolutely love what I do, and recommend this career to many, as it is more needed by people in our society than ever before. Coaches are like affordable therapists, but better, because we are part of our client’s team! We’re their equal, and top cheerleader. We may be the only person in their life who truly listens to them, hearing more than what they are saying. I’ll be a health coach and mentor to health coaches til God tells me to stop – I love it!
As a Family Health Coach, Author & Speaker, Bess assists others in establishing healthy lifestyle changes using small steps to create lasting change. The results are healthy weight loss, disease prevention, breaking the hold of addictions and habits, and finding ongoing wholeness in body and spirit! Her contagious spirit and grace-filled “health evangelism” touches and equips audiences all over the country. She has a special heart to minister to women, who are often the keepers of the home and the family pantry! You can find recipes, resources, and more about Coach Bess at www.theintentionallifestyle.com and join her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/coachbess for lively conversations and helpful tips and posts!