This week I want to talk about whether or not you should have a coach, a mentor, or maybe both in business.
So the first thing that I’m going to do is talk about what I think coach is, and what I think mentor is.
So a coach to me is someone that works on a specific area of your business acumen. So say for instance public speaking is not something you’re very comfortable with, but it’s something that you’re going to have to do more and more in your roll as a business owner. Then you would go out there and you would find a coach to help you work on this area. Where as a mentor on the other hand, is someone that you have a personal relationship with, that you can discuss problems, concerns, things that are going on inside your business that you can kinda bounce a ball off of.
So, do I need a coach? Well I am definitely not perfect and there are massive gaps in my business acumen. So I always have a coach going on in my life at some point because I am always trying to improve myself. This doesn’t have to be a face-to-face relationship with your coach, there are lots of great coaching courses online, there are Skype calls, there are webinars and all sorts of other products and services out there. But yes I definitely think that you should always have a coach going on in your life if you are running a business.
It might strike some of you as a bit crazy, but up until a year ago I’d never done any marketing training. I’d done absolutely zero. I’d never read a marketing book, I didn’t do any Google Ads, infact I thought Google ad words was black magic, I just didn’t do any marketing. This was a massive area of my business acumen that lacked. I’ve now spent a lot of time working on that, and this has made a real improvement to all of my businesses and obviously my sales.
So, how about a mentor? Do we need a mentor? I personally feel that we do need a mentor, because running your own business can sometimes be very hard and it can sometimes be very lonely. By having someone that you can go to and discuss business relationships, personal relationships, work-life balance, celebrate the little wins with but also discuss the problem that you’re having, this can be really,really powerful.
There are four stages of learning (Wikipedia Page On Four Stages of Learning) the first stage is unconscious incompetence, i.e we don’t know what we are incompetent at. By having a mentor they can really highlight our unconscious incompetence, they can help us bring the things the forefront and the once we recognise them, we can hand them over to a coach to help us work on them.
So for me, in business, it is definitely worthwhile having a coach, but it is definitely worthwhile also having a mentor to help identify the ares thats you can hand over to your coach.