According to results published in Fast Company Magazine, 90 percent of the executives polled in a recent survey who have used an executive coach said they plan to keep doing so. They obviously recognize the value of accelerated leadership development to help them get their businesses established, compete effectively, and move up to the next level. They also want to continually invest in those unique coaching and mentoring assets.
By learning from someone who has already been there and done that it is possible to acquire the kind of intensive leadership training and professional development necessary to leapfrog the competition. That’s because someone who understands the nuts and bolts of starting, managing, and expanding an entrepreneurial enterprise can teach exactly what to do – and perhaps more importantly, what not to do.
The Risk of Going it Alone as an Entrepreneur
Running your own business is difficult enough, and most entrepreneurs make the risky mistake of trying to learn on the job while working longer and harder, not smarter and more efficiently. Those who want to launch or expand an entrepreneurial enterprise these days also face one of the harshest and most daunting economic environments in history. Attempting to accomplish all of that without the value-added benefit of an experienced and resourceful coach or entrepreneurial mentor can present insurmountable obstacles.
That’s why so many ambitious entrepreneurs unfortunately find themselves treading water these days and spending more money every quarter just to stay afloat. Meanwhile their personal lives are also strained by extreme duress.
Leveraging the Expertise of an Experienced Coach
A veteran mentor can, however, help you immediately design and implement a savvy and sustainable business plan supported by intelligent systems and leading edge, scalable technology. They can teach you the secrets that were revealed to them by working in the trenches in their own entrepreneurial businesses. They can help you track your progress with appropriate metrics, establish proper benchmarks, and stay focused in order to hit targets without losing sight of the long range goal.
Choosing the Right Entrepreneurial Mentor
But not all coaches and mentors are created equal. To get their money’s worth from the coaching experience it is critical that the entrepreneur find someone with whom she or he feels excellent, open, comfortable rapport. Just as importantly, the coach or mentor needs to have a depth and breadth of experience that gives them personal insight into the nature of the business and its multifaceted complexities and responsibilities.
That experience does not necessarily have to be in the same profession, field, or industry. But the best coaches generally do have outstanding track records in terms of their own entrepreneurial history, leadership experience, and executive resumes.
Have you used an executive coach/professional mentor or thought about hiring one? I’d love to hear about your experience and whether you consider it a wise investment.
As a pioneering and visionary innovator, Sarah is a certified professional image consultant and brand strategist, speaker, trainer and author. Her company, Illustra Business Coaching, provides leading-edge business building strategies for small business owners & entrepreneurs who wish to take their company to the next level.
Illustra Business Coaching
Copyright © 2012, Sarah Hathorn, AICI CIP, CPBS
This article may be reproduced only in it’s entirety, including the above bio.
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