The year was 2005, Liverpool Football Club made a comeback of such proportions, it became known as the Miracle of Istanbul and it was the year I became a Business Coach.
In those 15 years I have supported businesses through economic downturns, and upturns and now the interesting situation we found ourselves in today. Through all the good and bad times successful businesses find a way.
The Miracle of Istanbul may seem like an odd analogy – teams seemingly unevenly matched, Milan favourites to win after being 3-0 ahead at half-time however Liverpool tweaked their formation and full-time score was 3-3 before going on to win on penalties. I took 3 key lessons from that (on top of the emotion gained from the win)
- The coach cannot win the game, but can certainly influence the result.
- Down isn’t necessarily out, as long as you believe.
- Small tweaks can bring big results.
Coaching is crucial, footballers can go a long way with their natural talent but a coach turns them into superstars. The same applies to you and your business with your coach being a unbiased, unreasonable friend making sure you perform to the maximum.
The most important thing for any coach has to be the results that the clients gain from the working partnership. In my experience these can vary from
- A financial institution increased their turnover by 700% and systemised to allow them to sell the business for a good sum.
- A one-man creative individual moved on from working on their own in their garage to buy their own premises and develop an agency.
- A small business owner helped his family achieve something they have always wanted
Success means something different to everybody, what does it mean to you?
Over the past 15 years, the single biggest connection between the successful clients and those who are struggling to achieve their goals is understanding. Understanding your numbers is crucial and if anything, the current economic climate shows just how critical an accountant is to your business. It is more important than ever to understand how your business works, particularly your cash flow. Accountants are ideally placed to support and guide you with any cash flow crises you may be facing. However, a business coach is someone who can ensure your business is in a position to thrive and take advantage of the understanding you have gained from the numbers. It is not knowing them that matters, it is doing something with them.
Writing this article has given me the opportunity to look back at what I have experienced and learned over the last fifteen years as a business coach and I want to share with you the three biggest lessons that I have learned which apply to every business and valid whatever the economy or business climate:
- Choose your clients very carefully because they are a reflection of you and your business. The wrong client will cost you time, money and reputation.
- Successful selling and networking is not about learning strategies and skills, it is all about building relationships, understanding the other person and being able to help them.
- Businesses are built on mathematics and habits; when you know the numbers in your business (time, money, service, delivery, people, etc) you can make improvements. The habits in your business are the systems that you develop and your people run.
The reason that most people connect with a coach is that wonderful word – ACCOUNTABILITY- it is not the knowing that is the issue, it is the doing that is important. Peter Jones of Alert PR wrote a wonderful article for me last year “Everyone needs a Brian.” and I have testimonials from clients on my Linked In profile saying similar things. As a coach I feel my role is very much that of Jiminy Cricket, to be the conscience that drives my clients to success.
On top of that I have collated a reference library of strategies to build a successful business which I am happy to share whether one to one or in mastermind groups.
I would like to thank each every one of you who has contributed to all my lessons of the last 15 years, and I look forward to learning and sharing many more over the next 15.