How Small Business Coaching Can Help Your Business

Serena Martino, Performance Coach

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Have you ever considered enlisting the help of a small business coaching service?

At Upskill Coach, we might be biassed toward the impact that coaching can provide for individuals, leaders and businesses, but you don’t have to take our word for it. There is plenty of evidence of the impact small business coaching has on a business.

According to this study published in the Journal of Management Development in February 2020, 99% of the surveyed respondents found small business coaching to have provided results above the investment that was required. The same study found small business coaching to have led to progress not only for them but also for their organisations.

This study from 2013 found that emotional intelligence, coupled with 360-degree feedback and business coaching optimises leadership development programmes. Whilst this study from the Institute of Coaching looked at the effect of business coaching, theoretically and practically, on individual-level performance/skills well-being coping work attitudes and goal-directed self-regulation. The conclusion is that small business coaching has a significant positive impact on these.

Owning, operating and growing a business is a monumental task. There’s so much to do that even the most motivated and organised owners get overwhelmed at times. Business coaching can sharpen your focus, answer your questions, help you with setting new goals and ultimately increase the profitability of your business.

In our experience, five essential things matter for your professional endeavours that get overlooked during the daily commotion of operating a business. Those five things can be directly impacted and improved through the use of small business coaching.

1. People matter

In a small business, there’s nowhere to hide. It’s a reality that many companies face. Every person matters to the success of a small business.
For example, consider a very typical small business scenario. Money is tight, resources are scarce, and employees are forced to wear many hats. When your administrator signed up to help you with taking calls and some basic bookkeeping, little did she know that she’d also have to do some Facebook content marketing on the side!

These scenarios are all too common for small businesses, especially new ones that are faced with growing pains.

Every person’s responsibilities directly impact the bottom line of the business. Replacing someone’s duties to cover holiday or sick time can, at times, be the difference-maker between having the resources to meet the needs of customers or not.

What can small business coaching do?

A business coach can provide improvement suggestions to how your company utilises its scarce resources. A coach will help you identify bottlenecks in your business that can occur when a key employee is suddenly unable to come to work or perform their duties. Or as a result of a business growing. Identifying who and when you need to hire to achieve the growth you’re aiming for is crucial.

In most cases, it’s about clarifying designated responsibilities and standardised job roles, so there’s less confusion about who is supposed to do what around your organisation.

2. Actions matter

Productivity is not just what you do, but how you do it. Making the best operational decisions depends on the collection of the right data or information beforehand.
Productivity involves the full suite of what your business does during its daily operations.

According to LEAN methodology, the best way to increase productivity is by eliminating, simplify, standardise and automate tasks, in that order. That means that the first step is to identify which activities can be eliminated. If you can’t eliminate them, can they be simplified? Once they are simplified, can they be standardised? And once they are standardised, you can look at options for automation.

By following this process, you can ensure that you and your employees spend time on the tasks that are adding value to your customers. A business coach can also help you with how to improve time-management across the team.

Greater productivity prevents you from being distracted by surface-level issues and instead allows you to spend more time on the work that impacts your business the most.

What can business coaching do?

Many business coaches can provide training in LEAN or be directly involved in LEAN mapping in your business. A coach can offer a roadmap for how your company can eliminate, simplify, standardise and automate processes in your business.

A coach can help your company execute with confidence, so your decision-making is on-point and yields higher productivity.

A good coach will work with your management teams and employees to set goals, hold them accountable and prioritise your work. The difference in your day-to-day productivity can be substantial.

3. Performance matters

Performance is combining the first two points. A great employee that is highly productive is a recipe for high performance at any small business.

That’s where the importance of finding staff and hiring better-performing employees comes in. Employees are one of your company’s greatest assets. You need to hire the best ones to stay on top.

A better employee is one who is a good cultural fit, and is willing to go the extra mile, is an innovative thinker and who can grow on a professional level at the pace of your company.

Related: What are the most important financial key performance indicators for your business?

What can small business coaching do?

A business coach can help you revamp your company’s human resources strategy to unlock new ways to attract and retain the top talent. A talented workforce can get you one step closer to being a high-performing organisation. A coach offers plenty of advice in this regard, from recruitment, setting up job descriptions and hiring for culture.

4. Happiness matters

Employee happiness can reduce absenteeism, lower turnover and boost focus on the job. There’s mounting evidence that employee satisfaction is directly linked to a company’s performance. For instance, the revenues for the companies featured in Fortune’s list of “100 Best Companies to Work For” increased by an average of 22 per cent in a single year.

What can small business coaching do?

Ensuring “happiness” at the workplace is a tricky task – especially when the expectations for your small business are high and your time is short. A business coach can help you create social programmes to ensure your employees are sharing laughs and building relationships, even in the corporate environment.

Your employees also need to feel grounded and fulfilled in the work they do. Their activities need to be linked to a corporate strategy and mission that helps them find meaning at the workplace.

None of these happiness-inducing improvements are easy to put in place. A business coach can offer real-world insight into how to define and track employee engagement, run successful organisational culture campaigns and make gradual improvements to the on-the-job lives of your employees.

5. Resilience matters

It’s probably a term that you’ve heard before; resilience. But what does it mean for your business?

McKinsey & Company defines business resiliency as “an organisation’s ability to keep generating economic profit through cyclical and structural changes in supply and demand.” In other words, it’s how tough your business is and how well it withstand external pressures and challenges.

And, as you probably know, there are dozens of challenges that a business can face nearly every day! There are political tensions and economic recessions to consider. Next, there are market-level forces that drastically disrupt business models and revenue streams – like e-commerce or other digital transformations. If that’s not enough, corporate tax breaks, business cash flow problems and advanced sales tactics are just some of the topics that you need to discuss at your management meetings.

That’s a lot of variables to take into account! In 2020, the world has even witnessed a global health pandemic, COVID-19, the full effects of which will have a lasting impact on businesses and the economy for years to come.

What can small business coaching do?

A nearby business coach can fill the gaps in knowledge that exist in your company. Try as you might predict every obstacle that your business might face; it’s an impossible task. However, the right business coach might have decades of experience in your industry that you can lean on. A coach can offer advice on how you can adapt your structure, strategy and decision-making to perform well even during volatile times.

Small business coaching services

In reality, it’s impossible to distil all the fundamental aspects of managing a business into five points. A business coach would be the first to tell you that operating and growing a business involves much more.

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Serena Martino Performance Coach

Serena Martino, Performance Coach

15+ years of business experience in Leadership, Marketing, Operations and Product roles. I Help Leaders and Senior Professionals to thrive and create empowered teams. I work with a direct and effectiv...

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