Do you want to create a fulfilling & successful coaching practice?

The Coaching Blueprint

Hi Loves! I hope your holiday weekend was awesome! Today, I’m super excited to help Kate Swoboda (aka Kate Courageous) with her launch! If you’re a regular around here (Hi you! I love you!) you know I just adore her & all she stands for. Her blog & the Courageous Living Guides are full of wise, valuable & HONEST content. I find myself using them for things in my life that I need support with again & again. I am so grateful for Kate & the work she does, her truthfulness, her willingness to talk about the hard stuff & with such grace, she is a guiding light.

So, today I am sharing an interview with Kate about her new awesomeness but before we get into that, I wanted to give you a little background on The Coaching Blueprint. If you are thinking about coaching or just started or maybe you are unhappy with the way your practice is now & could use some restructuring, this is for you!

The Coaching Blueprint is an e-program for new & emerging coaches who want to create a fulfilling & successful coaching practice. It’s rooted in getting to the heart of your coaching practice while also setting you up with the detailed how-to that every coach needs, as well as insider tips from coaches & counselors who have created successful practices. Designed to be worked in smaller increments that add up to the big picture, The Coaching Blueprint is an e-program that consists of more than 200 pages of content, exercises, & tools for mapping out a blueprint for your practice, as well as 12 interviews with seasoned practitioners in the field and several breakout video seminars that expand on chapters within the Blueprint. Work it lesson by lesson, chapter by chapter, & you’ll have mapped out a complete blueprint for your practice.

Exciting, yes!? Last week I polled KOM’s Facebook fans asking them:

Here are your questions… answered! Thank you so much Kate, you rock, my friend!

To get the word out about what one does and do so effectively, there’s an intersection of having a message that resonates, creating relationships, and message carriers such as social media, that all come together. I’ve found the most effective marketing to be through video interviews. Video touches on all of these areas–it will create a relationship (both people will probably share the video), it will probably have a great message (assuming you’re asking good questions of a person who has something valuable to share), and it can be spread via multiple social media carriers.

Go deeper into the black hole–with structure. By that, I mean don’t resist the “black hole place” and instead get curious about it and what it’s trying to tell you. I generally suggest that this work is done with another coach or support person. Our resistance has important messages for us. Resistance is just fear, but the fear response is a worthy one and deserves being looked at. And, by the way–it’s often thought of as “courageous” when someone side-steps fear and just does their thing. I think it’s far more courageous to be willing to truly look at that fear and see what it’s all about, to accept it, to be with it, and then to make choices after having done the work to examine it. Welcome to your courageous life–sounds like the journey is before you and that it’s going to be a rich one.

How to build a steady stream of clients is a topic that takes awhile to answer, but I can summarize two essential points here: A steady pipeline of clients comes from two things: 1.) a message that you’re jazzed about, excited about, lit up about, and 2.) time.

The longer I’m working for myself, the more I realize that the essential work is to get clearer myself on the message that I want to put out there (sometimes it’s hard to verbalize), and then get clearer for others on what it is that I’m trying to say–and even clearer on how they can be a part of the message! I believe that the most successful coaches are those who prioritize a commitment to message because the excitement they have about spreading what they do will carry them through the leaner times. The passion for the message can carry people a long way, which is necessary because it does take time. For The Coaching Blueprint, I interviewed 10 coaches and 2 counselors. All of them said, “It takes time.” How much time? It varies from person to person. I would ballpark 18 months to see regular movement, and 3-5 years to get to a place where one never really worries about where their next client comes from.

RE: hiring out, I personally don’t hire out for anything. My experiences thus far with hiring out have generally been that it’s more work to train someone and follow up than it is to just do it myself. The one exception that I can see for that is with good website design. Hiring an ace web designer truly does make a difference:

I would define a creative coach as someone who has a background in art and creativity who helps their clients with creative leanings move past fears so that the clients can create more work. (Note: I’m not a creative coach, so other creative coaches might define this differently! Jamie Ridler at is a great resource).

How do you get started? Many people start by attending some kind of training school, though this is not a requirement.

What qualifications are needed? Life Coaching is currently an unregulated industry and there is no licensure, and certification is not required. Coaching

schools are private institutions and are not regulated by any governmental body. Thus, theoretically, anyone can start a coaching school and charge people money to “get certified.” Additionally, anyone can get started as a coach, whether they have training or not. This is both a good thing and a bad thing.

It’s a good thing because much as some scream otherwise, there are people who are naturally very good at working with others–I’ve personally done the most transformative work of my life with a coach who had no “formal” training via a school, but who was extraordinarily gifted. He’s not the only person I’ve met who has touched my life even though he had no official training. In each of these cases, I’m not in alignment with the idea that their work is any less valid just because they didn’t pursue formal training.

Of course, the flip-side is also true–it’s not good that training is not required in those circumstances where someone is not practicing good coaching. It can be downright dangerous in those situations where the coach might be working with someone who needs far more help than that coach can give, but the coach doesn’t have the ability to see those signs.

I did choose to receive training, and I feel it enormously benefited my life because it focused on developing me personally as well as my ability to “just be” with others without techniques or fix-its or how-tos–
check out to see an example of the types of things that such training covers.

And how do you know if you’re ready to get into this and start?–There are two things that a coach needs in order to have a fulfilling and successful practice. One is that she needs to be an amazing coach, one who is relentlessly committed to her big vision for the world via her practice, and who will challenge her clients to get behind their own big visions without cutting corners. The second–far less sexy, but still very needed–is a solid plan for how she’s going to run her business. When interviewing coaches for The Coaching Blueprint, one question I asked several of them was “What do you know now, that you didn’t know then?” Several of them responded by saying that what they didn’t know then was how much they’d need to learn about running a business in order to have a fluid coaching practice.

Knowing if you’re ready is an internal process. You probably won’t feel “ready” at the beginning so much as you’ll feel willing, and if you’re excited by your vision, willing is enough.

The Coaching Blueprint is now available for pre-order. It will become fully available for download on October 4, 2011. Pre-Order now & you’ll get a special pre-order bonus when the Blueprint is fully available on October 4th!

(Because I believe in transparency: I am an affiliate of Kate’s, but even if I wasn’t, I’d still share this goodness. I am only affiliate of products that I truly believe in. If you buy this e-program through the links above not only will you be supporting Kate’s ventures & family but you will also support my family & Kind Over Matter because I will be receiving a percentage back with each sale that is made through these links. Heaps of Gratitude & Love!)

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