Running a business is hard work – especially if you’re a salon, spa or clinic owner who works in your business as well as on your business. It’s only natural to reach a point where you’re asking yourself “where to from here?” and wondering what you should do next in order to take your business to the next level and maximise your potential (and profits).
That’s why so many hair and beauty business owners rely on the expertise of a business coach.
But how do you know if you’re ready to hire a coach for your salon, spa or clinic, and if they can actually help you move the needle in your business?
We asked two salon business coaches, Malcolm Gibbons, Salon Business Coach, and Estelle Carroll, ZING Business Coach, for the key reasons business owners would benefit from the help of an expert, and for their top tips for choosing one.
Here are six signs it’s time to get a business coach.
1. You’ve reached your peak on your own
When you feel you’ve gone as far as you can on your own, it’s time to get a coach, Malcolm Gibbons explained.
“You’ll have strengths and weaknesses as a business owner and you’ll get to the top of your game in your strengths, but may have been ignoring your weaknesses. That’s when it’s time to hire a coach to help you reach the next level by amplifying your strengths, and importantly, improving your weaknesses,” he said.
2. You’re not growing
Another reason to hire a business coach is if your revenue and profits have flat-lined.
Malcolm explained further: “If your salon hasn’t had any significant growth for a while and you’re at a loss as to what to do about it, a coach will help you generate more revenue and profit.”
3. You need help with processes
Sometimes our processes need tidying up to make them as efficient as possible. A business coach will look at your current processes with fresh eyes and a different perspective, which will help you to optimise your current processes, or create new ones altogether.
Malcolm said: “You may need help in reviewing (or creating) your hiring process, training or marketing programme, your pricing or your numbers. A coach can help you with all of it.”
4. You want better work-life balance
While your business is extremely important, so is your personal life. A business coach can help you to identify the inefficiencies in your business, and how you can optimise your time, giving you more freedom to choose where to spend it.
Estelle Carroll said: “It’s all about having more choices. Time is one thing you can’t get back, so it’s important that your business enables you to have financial freedom while also being able to spend time with your family, and do the things you love.
“It melts my heart when my clients message me saying they can’t believe that they can be with their kids, that they can now have holidays, they can afford things, they have team members staying longer and choosing to work for them – it’s the best feeling when you help business owners to achieve their perfect work-life balance.”
5. You’ve become complacent
Sometimes when we’ve been doing something for a long time we can become comfortable and complacent. But that’s not how great businesses are made.
Malcolm said: “You may feel your business has become a bit stale, or you’re becoming complacent and need some accountability. A coach can motivate you and help you breathe new life into the business. A coach can help a good business become a great business.”
6. You want to be a better leader and business owner
If you want to become the best leader you can be, a business coach can help you to improve your leadership skills so you can better support your team and create a positive, high performing culture.
Estelle said: “What you know has got you to where you are now and it’s going to take a whole lot of new learning to get you to the next level. Having a coach is the best thing for you, your business and your team. It helps you level up in your leadership skills, which makes for a happier and more successful team, your business grows and you can see a greater vision of your potential.”
Tips for choosing a business coach
So, let’s say you’ve decided it’s time to hire a business coach. Great! Now what?
There are so many coaches to choose from, so it’s important to find your perfect fit.
Some will offer online programmes, some provide group coaching sessions, and some offer one-on-one coaching. The key is to find the coach that suits your needs best.
Be industry specific
Malcolm’s top tip for choosing a coach is to make sure they’re experienced in your industry.
“Look for a coach that is experienced within your industry – someone who has walked the business ownership path before you. They should have a deep understanding of what it’s like to be in your shoes, and have experience in solving many of the standard problems we face as business owners within the hair and beauty industry,” he said.
Book a consultation before you commit
Estelle said it’s important that you understand exactly what you’re getting when you hire a coach, and recommends booking a consultation first: “A coach might call this a discovery call or meeting. In this meeting they will ask you lots of questions and you should bring all your questions to the table, too. Bring a support person along if you’d like, such as your accountant or partner,” she explained.
“Ask if you get regular access to the coach. Where some programmes you might not ever get to speak to the coach, you just watch the online content, others provide 24/7 support. If you want someone you can call to nut out a problem – you need access to support.”
Is it time to hire a business coach?
Not every salon, spa or clinic owner needs to hire a coach, but these six signs will help you to identify whether it would be beneficial to your business. If you believe a business coach is what you need to take your salon, spa or clinic to the next level, make sure you do your research before committing and choose a coach you can trust and depend on.
If you’d like recommendations for business coaches in New Zealand and Australia, Kitomba has partnered with leading business coaches including Salon Business Coach, The ZING Project and Frog Coaching. Visit our partners page to find out more.