use to drive culture
a positive culture can deliver business growth
Emerging leaders are a very powerful force.
The keys to shifting culture.
The influential heart of leadership.
Easily approachable and the connection to grass roots positions.
Role models to impressionable staff.
The next line of executives and senior leaders.
Generally speaking, extremely progressive and open minded.
People with growth mindsets.
Focused on building and establishing their careers.
Often compelled to accomplish and deliver.
With a strong focus on goal setting and performance.
I often think of this phase of their career as the Saturday “moving day” at the Masters.
Trying to set themselves up for the final round on Sunday.
Some emerging leaders will advance up the leaderboard very quickly. Others collapse under the pressure and stagnate.
In reality, time and resources are a very precious commodity to them.
They are vulnerable to the pressures of their roles.
They seek support from each other and senior leaders to buffer them against feeling overwhelmed and alone.
As executives, you don’t want to lose your best emerging leaders.
People you have heavily invested in.
Nothing is more powerful to a business than having its emerging leaders in alignment with the executive and board.
Nothing is more damaging to culture than a disaffected group of emerging leaders.
They are the true swing vote.
I often get asked by emerging leaders – where do we start?
I found that the easiest place to start was building totems.
Introducing new initiatives that represent key aspects of the culture.
Photos, posters, notice boards, honour boards, launches, awards.
Highlighting the ‘values’ of the business all over the office space.
Starting new team building activities.
Introducing new traditions (weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual).
Engaging with staff in more collaborative and vulnerable ways. Opening the lines of communication.
Making the internal imagery and culture all about the people. More so than traditional external marketing images.
Why you ask?
So many people prefer tactile learning.
A learning style which is based on physical and hands-on activities, rather than listening to a lecture or watching demonstrations.
Emerging leaders often hold the key to unlocking the mindset that supports this approach.
Staff can often be a bit nervous to get into play mode.
To support a new initiative.
To be the first ones to put up their hand.
To expose the depth of their authentic self.
To face the risk of making a mistake and looking like a fool.
Perfectionistic cultures don’t do anyone any favours.
Staff can be cynical about the changes being skin deep.
Nonetheless, they can’t help recognising the new energy.
The visual cues representing change.
A new commitment.
Emerging leaders are perfectly positioned to exploit this nervousness and lead from the front.
To be the first ones into the fray.
The bravest souls.
The most likely to lead tactile learning exercises.
The most authentic personality sets. Ambitious but less ego.
Culture is the result of deliberate and carefully crafted initiatives.
The ones your leaders reinforce are the ones that get perpetuated.
What leverage do emerging leaders have?
In organisations that aspire to great culture emerging leaders have massive leverage!
I have 3 major tips:
- Help drive the introduction of new totems around the office that represent key aspects of the culture.
- Promote new traditions in the workplace and different ways to communicate with staff in more collaborative and vulnerable ways.
- Strongly champion tactile learning initiatives. Make sure it is hands-on and physical in nature.
Learn more about why a personal business coach can be the best decision you can make to grow your business.
30 real life examples of incredible business transformations created from energetic and powerful business coaching.
As a trained mediator I have dealt with some very ugly scenarios involving workplace tension. After all we are human but there are techniques to manage it.
Business coaching is designed to give space to business owners and breed accountability. It helps hit the pause button, reassess, make decisions, commit to new action and move forward with clarity to navigate uncertainty and ambiguity.
Business coaches should be skilled and qualified with a diverse and successful background in small business-related issues. They know how to grow businesses!
They provide personalized advice to steer you through any obstacles you face running a business.
A business coach will help you:
- Stabilise your cash flow
- Project your future cash flow
- Identify your ideal customer
- Refine your business niche
- Tighten your value proposition
- Properly research your competitors
- Improve your website
- Create new digital marketing campaigns
- Network with purpose
- Introduce elite talent management and hiring practices
- Negotiate the best possible supply chain terms and conditions
- Create a 3-year strategy
- Focus on implementing targets in your operations plan
- Address any staffing issues
Find new people to collaborate with and new investors
The best business coaches treat their client as if they are the most essential thing on their mind. Their service is flexible, personalised and hands on.
It should be a completely different experience from off-the-shelf training, the general advice of a mentor, articles on google or listening to podcasts. All of which have merit but don’t allow for your personal circumstances and preferred way of attacking problems.
When you work with a business coach you should expect to be held accountable to your business targets. You should be prepared for:
- A routine and rhythm of meeting regularly
- Openly sharing your cash flow and all relevant business analytics
- Providing regular progress updates
- Ripping into immediate business issues (low hanging fruit)
- To maximise ROI by addressing your strategy, systems and long-term future
If only ½ half of startups survive more than 5 years and only ⅓ make it to 10 years, what’s the huge game changing move to grow your business as well as setting it up to be sustainable?
Get your hands on an elite business coach! They could be worth millions to you. First things first, a business coach will quickly help you identify your gaps which could include:
- No real business plan or generally poor planning.
- A need to stabilise your cash flow
- Reliant on a small number of clients for more than half of your income
- Exploring ways to increase and close more sales
- To restructure your business for growth
- Finding your business niche
- Too operationally focused and unwilling to delegate
- Poorly planned marketing campaigns
- Shortage of adequate marketing and publicity
- Inexperience managing a business
- Running out of funds
- Ratio of costs to revenue being unbalanced
- A need to obtain finance to bring a new product to market
- An issue with target audience reach and sales conversion ratios
- Strategies to deal with market volatility
- A need to hire new staff
- Staffing issues
- No positions descriptions or performance reviews
- Supply chain issues
- Growing problems in the partnership
- Projected cash flow
- Competitor analysis
In small businesses it’s easy to be complacent. A business coach ensures you get more out of yourself and the business. They make you look for every angle. Ways to be more efficient, with processes and strategy and ways to make more $.
A business coach will help you in the art of negotiation and navigating tough business decisions. They will push your performance to new levels which will become your new A grade standard. Every single business owner needs an accountability coach.
A business coach will dive into every session with a clear agenda. A chance to discuss immediate issues surrounding the business. To explore cash flow projections for the next 12 months. To help strategize and put ideas forward for emerging opportunities and issues. They are available via phone and e-mail and are a truly brilliant feature of the best small business teams. Much, much cheaper than a junior full-time employee. In fact, a small fraction of a cost but someone with the calibre of a CEO and Executive.
I wake up every morning, with the words of the Young Entrepreneur Council front of mind.
In an article written in 2015, they described how a business coach can make you work harder and progress faster than you would on your own. From providing a much-needed ego check to helping expand your network, a business coach can give you both the tools and perspective you need to go from point A to point B.
Based on their own experiences, 10 successful founders from Young Entrepreneur Council discuss some of the benefits to hiring a business coach.
- You’ll go outside your comfort zone
- You’ll get personal attention from someone who knows your business inside and out
- You’ll finally have someone who isn’t afraid of correcting you
- You’ll learn how to make your ideas a reality
- You’ll gain a needed confidante
- Your networking opportunities will skyrocket
- You’ll make more money
- You’ll develop self-confidence
- You’ll be held accountable for what really matters
- You’ll hear unbiased opinions
After conducting more than 273,175 interviews on the topic, the Gallup Wellbeing Index demonstrated that 45% of entrepreneurs report being stressed. Entrepreneurs also were reported to having “worried a lot” — 34%.
Almost all small business owners desperately need advice on how to grow their business but end up running the same weekly process, rhythm and routines. Metaphorically, hitting your head against the wall until they become a statistic! Sounds a bit grim, but let’s look at some figures.
UTS Sydney, produced a report called ‘Start Me Up’ in which they estimated that 1 in 3 new small businesses in Australia fail in their first year of operation, 2 out of 4 by the end of the second year, and 3 out of 4 by the fifth year.
Small business owners often become overwhelmed by all the information and advice available. Thousands of articles, videos and podcasts online on ways to grow a business. In the context of a small business owner it can feel generic and not specific to your unique business.
Yet they usually pivot away from business coaching on the basis that they see it as expensive. But when you consider it in context of business failure rates and staffing costs, it is so much less expensive than the alternative — making poor business decisions.
Business coaching is best delivered as a hands on, targeted and customised process. All about return on investment, winning and getting things done!
No matter how solid things are going, the best business coaches will take you to the next step.
As soon as I’ve built trust with a new small business client, we revert to a monthly retainer. In this situation, my clients pay me a flat fee each month for access to my services.
In terms of added value, the monthly retainer package includes:
- Face to face coaching – 2 sessions x 1.5 hours each
- Phone support – 1 session x 30 min phone
- Email support – Email support between sessions
- Reports – Detailed summary after each session with a focus on homework and next steps
When you are weighing up the cost of a business coach, compare it to the real cost of labour. Don’t forget the hidden cost of employees:
- Annual leave
- Sick leave
- Public holidays
- Workers compensation
- Payroll tax
- Cost of recruiting new staff
- Equipment i.e. computers, mobile phones, desk space
So, a typical minimum wage employee costs you $740.80 per week (approx. $39K per year plus on costs) and a business coach costs you $12K per year.
Then evaluate the ROI on a business coach which relates to your business plan, stabilised cash flow, new revenue, a refined business niche, improved marketing campaigns, better approach to hiring, ability to handle staffing issues, an enhanced supply chain, superior competitor analysis and the list goes on.
The best business coaches have some clear features:
- The best business coaches are professionally trained by a reputable and top line coaching school like the Institute of Executive Coaching and Leadership (IECL)
- They are backed by a range of Qualifications. Professional qualifications are a way of establishing that your business coach is a well-rounded and educated professional who has extensive knowledge.
- They have gained front line experience across a range of industries and in a variety of roles. Offering you a deep playbook and a range of tools. Able to share unlimited case studies and lessons learnt.
- They have a rich network of contacts in every facet of business building. They give you unfettered access to those contacts and constantly help you build your own network.
- They are not guided by dogma or rhetoric. They are not empty motivators.
- They hold you accountable. It’s way too easy to over think and procrastinate if you’re not held accountable. They will call you out on your excuses. They will push your limits. They will help you drive your operations plan. Focus on implementing your targets.
- They kick your ass but also believe deeply in your personal potential and business. They have the courage to help you develop that potential. “If we want people to fully show up, to bring their whole selves including their unarmored, whole hearts—so that we can innovate, solve problems, and serve people—we have to be vigilant about creating a culture in which people feel safe, seen, heard, and respected.”
- They have leading skills when it comes to strategy, marketing, cash flow, people management and systems.
After every single session, David sends me a comprehensive summary report.
He includes summaries of all previous sessions. A complete record of every encounter. Every outcome. Like an index of every key issue and decision for 2 years. He includes next steps for the following session. Accountability is the theme.
These reports are not standard for any business coach. They are so in depth and it’s like David writes every word said in the session. It is his true genius. You don’t notice him taking notes. But they are comprehensive and accurate. He lists the goals that need to be met before the next week. These reports drive exceptional performance. You wouldn’t be doing these things otherwise. I swear by his reports as the greatest level of value I had ever seen.
The proof is in the pudding. This expression means that the best way to find out if something is good or successful is to test it yourself.
When I think of a reason to use me as a business coach I think of a well-known speech by Carlos Ghosn, Nissan’s president and CEO and the engineer of the company’s dramatic turnaround: ‘Don’t judge me on a good speech. Judge me on my results. Be very cynical. Be very cold. Look at the profits, the debt, the market share, the appeal of the cars. Then judge me.’
In my own case, I ask you to review the following case studies from my clients:
- David has been integral to seeing our business grow in revenue above $1.1 million dollars over the last 18 months.
- Since acquiring David’s services, we increased our average monthly yield by $20,000.
- David helped the business grow in sales by $250,000 over a 12-month period through identifying, planning and assisting the growth of our sales into overseas markets.
- David was instrumental in helping me nail huge international business opportunities in the USA and UK.
- It was with his support that we struck a $35K deal taking a failing campaign to our highest ever customer engagement score and speed of sales.
- I immediately made $22K net profit and began implementing new sales strategies after bringing David on as my business coach.
- After working with David for 2-3 sessions he suggested that I collaborate with other small businesses for cross promotional competitions and prize giving. I gained 2K in new database followers from my first 2 competitions. It is now part of my social media strategy.
- When we began our apparel business based in Melbourne, we immediately turned toward China for our supplier arrangements, due to the availability of low-cost manufacturing. After a time, it was clear that our terms of business were no longer favourable. After engaging David we ended up saving $10K per batch order for certain products. It was a life changer for our business’s bottom line.
- David helped me renegotiate my existing partnership agreement. What would’ve been a shockingly awkward and confrontational conversation turned out to be anything but.
- David has recently been instrumental in finding a way to navigate through COVID19 and see our business increase its revenue for April by 50%. In fact, April is on target to be one of our strongest of all time. He suggested that we completely adapt our messaging. Change our approach to marketing. Still in line with our core brand but a genuinely brilliant manoeuvre.
- I engaged David to assist me when my business model wasn’t working. I had spent a huge amount of money setting up an online business. Over $100K of my own money.
- David helped me create a simple strategy that suited our business model. He introduced the concepts of a 3-year strategic plan and 1-year operation plan. He always helps tie our short-term focus, on the here and now, into our long-term goals.
- It only took 2 sessions working with David to create a business strategy. He called it a strategy on a page. Something we now have put up on the wall of our office. He then taught me that our yearly operations plan needs to set out how we are going to complete our strategic objectives. He got us to work off SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable & Realistic, Timely)
- After every single session, David sends a comprehensive summary report. He includes summaries of all previous sessions. A complete record of every encounter. Every outcome. Like an index of every key issue and decision for 2 years. He includes next steps for the following session.
- David helped us put together a performance review document and process catered for my business. He explained and taught us how to use it. So easy and efficient. We never saw the point with HR documents previously but that changed after experiencing massive problems with 2 key staff members. I’m glad to say that we quickly saw changes in the way our employees behaved and performed after implementing it.
- David was extremely patient and talked us through contemporary wage management processes in accordance with current industrial laws. He helped us put together a clear set of guidelines.
- Unfortunately, there have been 2 occasions where we had to administer staff redundancies because the work wasn’t there. A topic we knew nothing about and had budgeted for expensive legal advice. David stepped in as our business coach and helped guide us through the process.
- I recently put out a new product that completely failed. I stood to lose $75K on the campaign. I didn’t see it coming. David quickly helped me with a pivot strategy. He remembered a discussion we had recently had with a third-party beer manufacturer that was looking for products it could use as part of a promotion. They thought the product looked great and were happy to buy them off me. Whilst I didn’t make all the funds back David’s pivot strategy saved my over $50K.
- When I first met him, I was about to embark on a $30k endeavour and Dave helped me see it was totally unnecessary, and showed me that I already had everything I needed to diversify my business into areas that came naturally to me. Almost overnight I built serious momentum and cash flow in running specialised workshops on parenting at schools and in small group sessions.
- I was really concerned after struggling to hold onto my previous 2IC and had also lost 2 junior staff over a 3-month span. I felt the office mood flattening and how their loss had affected morale. Together with David, we worked on our vision, role, mission, guiding behaviours, values and customer service standards. It was an awesome series of workshops. David has been on my back to make sure all of that work is integrated into everything we do. It’s early days but I haven’t had any staff turnover for 5 months now.
- After 17 years directing a small business, I was looking for what next. Problem was I wasn’t sure what that looked like and how to leave one identity behind to embrace the next. David guided me through these hurdles, from a financial perspective and my emotional resistance. I cried, laughed and let off steam as he supported me venturing into the treacherous landscape of changing my business model.
- In 4 weeks, I sourced $14K in new work after David intervened on my piss poor efforts to network. I have to be honest. Being a business owner can be a lonely journey but I originally hated networking.
- In our first 3 sessions David helped me work on my brand. He dug into my VIA strengths and Myers Briggs and quickly got a feel for my personal strengths and weaknesses. It wasn’t the most comfortable process but I kept walking away more and more confident in myself. I felt like a better leader. That I had taken off a mask. It was less about being liked and more about being respected.
- He has the attention to detail of a lawyer and the creativity of a world class marketer. David totally reshaped our business proposals and drove better quality results. In turn with David’s changes, my business was able to lock away hundreds of thousands of dollars of extra revenue. All because of his changes.
- David was able to guide me through incredibly stressful small business legal challenges. David has previous experience as a commercial litigation solicitor (just another string to his bow) and he helped me put together a strategy which included briefing a solicitor and then a barrister.
- David was also instrumental in navigating the world of intellectual property. Registering our business name, logos, products both in Australia and overseas. Again, he helped me engage a solicitor with expertise in that space. He helped me understand the steps involved. Helping me ask the right questions. Keep on top of things. To negotiate and then minimise the legal fees, we spent.
- When COVID19 hit I feared that my business was over. I tried to march on as if nothing happened and I was punished in sales big time. My lowest March revenue in history. By a mile. I was totally shattered. I was bleeding money on every front and could only keep running until June until the money ran out. I reached out to David seeing if he could suggest anything to breathe life back into the company. He suggested that it started with our customers. We needed to completely change the way we marketed our products. David inundated me with 50-60 potential captions we could use. We have a long way to go until we are in clear waters, but our April sales were much stronger than we thought possible. Not earth shattering but a healthy daily cash flow. Engagement levels on social media also began to pick up.