There is no better time to be a business development coach than at the present time.
While everybody in the world is grappling with the after-effects of Covid-19 pandemic, you may be wondering if there is a market for your coaching practice.
Will clients be willing to hire you? Many small and medium businesses may go down as a result of the economic crisis. Who then will be looking for a business development coach?
There is no denying that many businesses have been impacted. But there is one thing that the human race has plenty of. Do you know what?
What Does A Business Development Coach Do?
According to Wikipedia business development entails tasks and processes to develop and implement growth opportunities within and between organizations.
Business development is the creation of long-term value for an organization from customers, markets, and relationships Business development can be taken to mean any activity by either a small or large organization, non-profit or for-profit enterprise which serves the purpose of ‘developing’ the business in some way. In addition, business development activities can be done internally or externally by a business development consultant. External business development can be facilitated through Planning Systems, which are put in place by governments to help small businesses. In addition, reputation building has also proven to help facilitate business development.
Now that the parameters are largely set, it is easier to understand what a business development coach does.
According to Wikipedia, coaching is a form of development in which an experienced person, called a coach, supports a learner or client in achieving a specific personal or professional goal by providing training and guidance.
A business development coach has three main responsibilities:
1. Help owners/CEOs create a realistic roadmap for progress
2. Plan and prioritize goals and strategies to help owners reach goals
3. Create a sense of accountability
Who is Hiring A Business Development Coach?
Who are the people that a business development coach can help? Are large organizations hiring business development coaches? If so, who exactly is hiring?
A business development coach is in demand with large and small business owners alike. A business development coach oversees a company’s growth trajectory, assists owners to understand the implications of decisions and helps them with strategy to grow the business.
Playing a critical role like this means that a business development coach will never be out of work.
The question then is how to find a client.
Is this a tough market to find clients?
I am sure you have many questions running through your mind right now.
Irrespective of which stage of your career you are at, I have found that some concerns remain the same for all coaches. It does not matter whether you are an executive, spiritual or success coach. Everyone has one big concern: will I be successful?
1. How will I get clients?
2. How can I get noticed in a crowded market?
3. How will I advertise my services?
4. Will I earn enough money?
Can you relate to these concerns? If these are some of the questions you have asked yourself, then don’t worry.
Throughout this blog, I will answer all your queries.
Target Audience of a Business Development Coach
Either way, it is natural for you to be worried about your business right now. Times are tough. Economies have crashed not just in the USA or UK but across the world.
Will people pay to employ a business development coach at the present moment?
I also had the same doubts. So I typed in the words “New business after Covid 19” into Google search. What I saw surprised me!
Several consultancy firms have already created memos and reports on the implications of Covid 19 on businesses. Some are here, here, here and here. As a business development coach, is this relevant for you?
Yes, it is. In order to cater to the new world order, you have to be prepared for the new reality. Here is a quote that I found very relevant.
T.V. Narendran, global CEO of Tata Steel, said: “Over the last couple of years, we saw companies reducing their dependence on China. After this pandemic, you will see more and more localization of supply chains. They will be ideally in the same country, and it’ll be even better if they are in the same neighbourhood.”
The full article is here.
This means there is opportunity for several new businesses to start from scratch and make their mark. So, you will get customers even at this stage as a business development coach.
But, as a business development coach, the onus is on you to package your services well. This is why you need to be a smart business development coach.
Read some of my earlier blogs for tips on coaching. Better still, read this blog and at the end I do have a surprise offering for you!
Business Development Coach versus Other Coaches
There are several coaches focused on helping business owners on different aspects. Some of these are marketing coaches, sales coaches, business coaches, or even executive coaches.
Marketing Coach versus Business Development Coach
Marketing is defined as the process of determining which products and services you will offer to which target audiences, at what price. It also addresses how you will position and promote your firm and its offerings in the competitive marketplace. The result of all this activity should be an increasing awareness of your firm among your target audience — and a stronger flow of qualified leads and opportunities.
Although business development has often been seen as a sub set of marketing the two also have some differences. Business development focuses on acquiring new marketing or distribution relationships and channels.
Marketing and business development may have the same objective: more sales. But though the end goal is the same, business development is far sighted. It looks at the future prospects of the company and works towards building long-term relationships.
This is where a business development coach will lend most value.
Businesses that survive the Covid-19 era need a long term vision to thrive. A business development coach can help owners and leaders strategize for those long-term plans while they work to meet the near-term goals.
Business Development Coach versus Business Coach
Is a business coach the same as a business development coach?
No, the two are not the same.
According to an online definition “A business coach will assist and guide the business owner in running a business by helping them clarify the vision of their business and how it fits in with their personal goals. Business coaching is a process used to take a business from where it is now to where the business owner wants it to be.”
The business development coach will have the same approach but focuses on brand building and long-term goals.
As such a business coach will borrow some aspects of business development coaching for reaching the end result.
Have you heard this podcast by Harvard Business Review called What Can Coaches Do for You? Although the discussion is about executive coaching, the podcast and article is relevant to you as a business development coach, too.
What Are the Qualities Needed in a Business Development Coach?
What are the qualities of a good business development coach?
Irrespective of a niche, all good coaches share some common traits that make them successful. I have written about these in detail in a few blogs. In my previous blog Top 10 Coaching Skills You Must Have as a Business Development Coach, I have mentioned several qualities. The top three relevant qualities for you as a business development coach are:
Remain impartial and non-judgemental as the client outlines his goals. Ask relevant questions and listen attentively as this will be crucial towards setting up a plan. Together, build a realistic plan and work out milestones to reach throughout your coaching engagement.
As a business development coach, this is the most important task. Set goals together with your client and insist on meeting them. Start with a weekly calendar and mark progress no matter how slow. I had read somewhere about how coaches work. You will never see a football coach run laps of the field for their team. Similarly, a business development coach is not expected to do the work of building a plan. They are hired to be sounding boards and to motivate the client.
Structured sessions with a clear strategy and implementation plan will help your client achieve short-term and long-term goals. Keeping your client motivated will help him/her achieve goals and get the best out of your coaching sessions.
These qualities are common for coaches across all coaching models. There are several other qualities that make for a good coach. You may want to refer to my blog on 21 Coaching Skills Every Successful Coach Needs and Top Qualities Of A Successful Coach.
These qualities mentioned are helpful for all coaches, including business development coaches.
Top Qualifications Required in a Business Development Coach
All good coaches have some of the traits I have mentioned above. However, the most important trait is a desire to help people.
But are there certain specific degrees needed to practise as a business development coach?
Invest in yourself before asking others to invest in you. Look for training courses that will give you a head start in your career as a business development coach. But apart from that there is no particular degree that you must have unlike in the medical sector.
In some cases, relevant sector experience helps.
Do You Need Certification to Be A Business Development Coach?
No, you do not need certification or a degree to be a business development coach!
I have written about this in my blog Do you need Coaching Certification in 2020?
Till now, the coaching industry is unregulated. This means anyone can claim to be a coach. Your coaching experience, marketing skills and good client recommendations will decide how successful you will be. Having said that, a degree from a reputed coaching institute will help you get a foot in the door. Understand your targeted industry better and make connections.
I have earlier listed tips on how coaches can make higher profits. In my blog, Coaching Products 2020: All You Need to Know, I have mentioned some great products that you can offer. Keep innovating on what your customer service offering will be.
Lending Value as a Business Development Coach
A lot of articles online will give you ideas about how to go about with business development if you are a business owner.
However, your clients will be depending on you to handhold them through the process. Here are the top strategies that you can offer your clients as a business development coach.
1. Network, network, network. This is a simple trick that helps out a lot of working professionals in their career. Yet, it is not often on the top of the list when one thinks of ways to expand his business or further his career. As a business development coach, show your clients how important relationship building is for longevity of a business. Advise clients to attend customer meets, relevant conferences or trade shows and host industry specialists at company events, if budgets permit.
2. Referrals and recommendations. These are the other great strategy to help owners ensure long term gain. However, a referral is dependent on someone else recognizing a brand’s worth and capabilities. Avoid passive referrals by having a clear elevator pitch. As a business development coach, you should advise every client to put careful thought into what they stand for and how they deliver value. Turn every chance meeting into a business opportunity by preparing a great elevator pitch in advance.
These are a few effective ones but you can make your own list to get the client to meet goals.
Spend some time with your client at the beginning to understand their priorities.
You may also find other pointers in my blog 5 Powerful Coaching Questions to Ask Your Clients Based on Your Coaching Niche.
Marketing Tips for a Business Development Coach
Is marketing going to help you as a business development coach?
Read my blog Is Marketing Crucial to My Coaching Business. I have addressed this question in detail in that blog.
What is marketing? A 2018 article states that “two-thirds of adults in the United States (US) say that trust in a brand has a great deal (31%) or a lot (37%) of influence on their decision when making a big purchase, reports Survey Monkey. Adults in the United States are not alone in the importance they place on trust: a majority of respondents in the United Kingdom (57%) and Canada (69%) also say that trust in a brand has a great deal or a lot of impact on their decision-making.
This article also supports my advice. It answers the simple question about why one needs marketing right from the start.
- What are the needs of your target customers?
- How do your competitors meet the needs of your target customers?
- How can you help your target customers understand why your product or service is better than, or different from, the competition?”
Salary of a Business Development Coach
Now let us address the all important question of earning. Will you earn enough to give your family a comfortable lifestyle as a business development coach?
Let us look at some broad parameters. How much can a business coach earn?
According to Payscale, the average salary for a business coach is $70,400. On the other hand, Ziprecruiter reports that the average annual pay for an Executive Business Coach Job in the US is $84,914 a year.
According to this website, a business development coach at Edward Jones earns an average of $41,562, ranging from $40,263 at the 25th percentile to $42,813 at the 75th percentile, with top earners (the top 10%) earning more than $44,013. Compensation is derived from fewer than 20 profiles, including base salary, equity and bonus.
Demand for a Business Development Coach
Is there currently enough demand in the market for a business development coach?
Coaching is a growing industry.
Let us look at some facts and figures. I have mentioned these statistics in my earlier blog posts as well. But this sets the context in terms of what you can expect to earn as a business development coach.
· The International Coach Federation boasts 53,300 members. It has a steady growth trend.
· Average income for life coaches ranges from $27,100 to $73,100. Specialty coaches can charge more than $100,000 annually.
· Growth projections for the life coaching industry are an estimated 6.7%. This would take revenues to $1.34 billion by 2022.
· 92% of life coaches remain active in the field.
· In Asia, there were around 3,700 coaches. They contributed $113 million in total annual revenue.
· More and more corporations are hiring life coaches instead of mental health counsellors to work with employees (no stigma).
· Life coaches remain unregulated. There are no state licensing requirements. This suggests freedom of practice, but also raises concerns about quality.
Do people actually benefit from coaching?
This news report from the 2017 ICF Global Consumer Awareness Study claims that customers are happy! The research was also conducted by PwC Research. It stated:
· 89% people in India are aware of life coaching
· 59% have partnered with a life coach at some time
· 97% expressed satisfaction with the experience
Since you have chosen a very specific niche as a business development coach, tap into this enormous market. You may want to read more about niches in my blog The Ultimate Guide To Finding Your Coaching Niche.
The other common question I hear is this: How you will one get the brand name noticed? The market is evolving and growing. But the competition is also getting tougher. You may want to refer to my blog How to promote your life coaching business? for tips on this.
Resources to Boost Your Career as a Business Development Coach
Even when you have become an experienced business development coach, keep reading up the latest research and developments to keep yourself updated. And keep an eye out for how technology can help you in your career as a business development coach.
A simple Google search will show you several books and podcasts online. As a business development coach, you may want to look up some of these.
Books to Read As a Business Development Coach
There are several books for you, if you are a business development coach. I recommend you look through some of the titles and see which one is a good read for you.
Podcasts and Videos for a Business Development Coach
There are several YouTube videos and podcasts relevant for you as a business development coach.
I have listed some of them below.