Business Coaching: The Secret Weapon For Small Business Success
by Dominic Basulto, contributing writer
Business coaches can play many different roles in helping a business get off the ground and succeed. Most importantly, they can play the role of mentor and advisor, giving you insights into how to proceed next based on their own proven track record of success. For any new business, coaching can provide an important source of competitive advantage.
Pivot to new business models
The startup founders of Silicon Valley helped to popularize the term “pivot,” which essentially refers to shifting strategy on the fly when your current business model isn’t working. A consumer-focused startup, for example, might “pivot” in order to become an enterprise-focused startup. Or it might decide to overhaul its product mix entirely, becoming a new type of company (complete with a new re-branding) seemingly overnight.
This is where business coaches can play an important role. They are essentially there to help you develop Plan B when Plan A is not working out as originally envisioned. They can help you to take a step back, reassess the goals and purpose of your new company, and then come up with a revamped business strategy that makes sense for current marketplace conditions. Silicon Valley companies do it all the time and so can you.
Accelerate your speed to market
In the business world, speed matters. The faster you can get a product from the prototype stage to the finished product stage, the better. The faster you can capitalize on new trends in the marketplace, the better. Moreover, the faster that you can react to problems and bottlenecks, the more prepared you will be to prevent slowdowns and other issues.
And here, too, business coaching can play an important role. For example, another Silicon Valley concept is the MVP, or Minimum Viable Product. What entrepreneurs have discovered is that being first to market matters more than ever before, and that customers are actually open to the idea of products delivered in “beta.” In other words, you don’t have to have a 100% perfect product before you ship – all you need is an MVP that you can work on with customers and partners to make even better. So if you are spending far too long on testing, developing and prototyping products, it could be the case that you need a business coach to help streamline the process.
Find the right members of your management team
A business coach can also help you find the right members of your management team. At some point, you will need to hire a chief marketing officer (CMO), a chief technology officer (CTO), or another member of your C-suite executive team. You might be able to find this talent on your own, based on your own industry connections and professional network. But a business coach can simplify this process for you, helping you hire the individuals that are best suited to your company, industry or sector. Getting the hiring right at the outset is key for any small startup. A large corporation might be able to overcome a single bad hire, but a lean startup cannot.
So if you’re looking for a “secret weapon” for future business success, why not consider a business coach? It could be the key to pivoting to a new business model, accelerating your speed to market, and making the right hires for your startup management team.