How do coaches keep clients?
July 9, 2019 8:56 AM   Subscribe

How do business coaches build out a plan with clients so that they maintain the relationship?

I've worked in contracting/freelancing for a long time. I have always built coaching/consulting into bigger, more tangible projects - not for free, but just embedded in the overall project. I've never worked on retainer and I've never done 1:1 coaching. Sometimes people approach me about business coaching, but I have absolutely zero idea how you build this out so that people get something valuable from your time. I have read some "how to be a coach" books, but they are very entry-level and don't really talk about how you build things out in a pragmatic way. To me, paying $X for a project with specific deliverables has always felt very tangible and solid. However, I'm getting feedback that I have skills/experience that would help people in a coaching format and that my listening skills and problem solving skills would help. I just don't understand how you create value in 40 to 60 minutes and get $300+ an hour for it. Can anyone suggest where I could learn to build this out in a way that feels solid to me? I don't want to burn clients by doing phone sessions where they are left feeling like they wasted $300 or whatever. I am also loathe to invest in a relationship over and over that ends up with a $300 sale. Thanks.
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats to Work & Money (2 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Business coaching can take lots of forms. It's kind of like therapy. Sometimes it's very specific and project oriented. Sometimes you are working through mental or emotional blocks, or being a cheerleader or accountibili-buddy.

During intake, I try to find out where the client is at with all of this, and how the tools, techniques, and systems I use can help them the most. We create a plan together and set goals.

I work on retainer, in 10 hour blocks, as I find that this is usually the minimum timeframes to start seeing results.

Taking a life coaching course helped me a lot with the soft skills of coaching. It sounds like you have a lot of the building blocks already, so you might think about reading The Coaching Habit by Michael Stanier and designing a system based on that which incorporates your current skills and areas of expertise.
posted by ananci at 9:29 AM on July 9, 2019 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Thank you. That's a good start.
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats at 1:09 PM on July 10, 2019

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