What’s the one thing many successful people have in common? Rarely do they ever achieve greatness on their own. There is always a team of people working behind the scenes. The key person is usually a coach. Tony Robbins had Jim Rohn when starting out. Brendon Burchard had Brian Tracy. Even professional singles tennis players don’t win on their own. They have their coaches and entourage sitting on the stands supporting them. Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic hired the best so they could be pushed to greatness. While not all of us can hire a whole entourage, we can seek help to make us better succeed in some area of life.
Here are 7 tips on how to research and find the best coach for your professional and personal growth.
1. Decide what kind of mentor you need.
Mentors are not a “one-size-fits-all” kind of thing. There are many mentors out there from all walks of life and in many different areas of expertise. First of all, you want to decide what kind of outcome you want. What area of business or life needs your immediate attention? Do you need help with strategy, sales, finances, marketing, technology or team building? Do you have a personal goal and need help with mindset, productivity, performance or work/life balance?
2. Decide if you want to work with one mentor or several different mentors.
If you have one big, specific goal, like getting a promotion or launching a business, then it might make sense to focus on one mentoring relationship. If there are several aspects of your business or personal development goals you want to improve, consider taking on a couple mentors or how ever many you can handle at one time in terms of time and money. You can also spread them out based on the deadlines of your strategic objectives.
3. Ask around.
Whether in your company, associations, or social gatherings, you never know who may know someone who knows exactly who you’re looking for. You could also go to your local chamber of commerce or check up the business meet-up groups in your area.
4. Grill happy mentees.
Did they get a good return on investment from the coaching they received? Look at testimonials on the coaching web pages and seek them out. They may have some advice so you could make an informed decision.
5. Take online courses from the entrepreneurs you most admire.
In some ways, they’re doing you a service by offering a more cost-effective way to work with them. Courses are usually a more affordable option than 1:1. While you may not get super catered advice to your needs, you may have some access to the coach via a Facebook group or email access. And if you do choose to invest in their higher priced coaching programs later on, you will have already tested out their teaching framework and know if it’s worth your money, time and energy.
6. Go social.
Use your business Facebook groups and other social media platforms like Twitter. You could do a hashtag search or interact in the groups you already belong to. I’ve found success with this approach in the past.
If you belong to a professional association, you have a chance to get in touch with many people - especially if you’re on a committee. Use this as a way connect with people in your niche. If you volunteer for a professional event, you may have access to high level speakers who you may be able to approach for ways to work with you.
Finding the right mentor or handful of mentors doesn’t have to be a daunting process. It does take some time and legwork, but if you’re clear on your outcome and who you want to work with, it can be such a rewarding experience. Once you find someone who is the right fit for you and your goals, you’ll be on a better path to succeed.