Get your business off the best possible start with an MBA backed, IOC accredited consultant. A startup coach can ensure your business has the best chance of success and help you grow as an entrepreneur.
Taking a startup coach on for a new business may seem a bit daunting, after all – we are talking about fledgling business. There are many other costs to consider, alongside adding the cost of a coach too. Remember that a startup coach is an investment into the business, but it is also an investment in yourself and there are budgets for all businesses to work with. Many entrepreneurs forget that coaching not only puts your business in the best possible position to move forward, it also allows you as a person to grow.
A startup coach can help you and your business:
A startup coach is a business consultant who specialises in supporting new business owners to start their business. They will generally have experience of starting and growing new businesses. A process to deliver the phases of growth and contacts for investment, growth and business support.
So many times, when I have read about hiring a startup coach, the lines between the business and the individual get blurred. It is easy to see why. In the very beginning of most businesses, it is very hard to distinguish between the owner and the business. That, however, isn’t really a good way to look at it. There is value for both the business, who will ultimately pay for the startup mentor. Then, there is value for the entrepreneur too. Firstly, let us take a look at the value delivered to the owner.
I have talked about this so often in posts, but it still holds true. Starting a business is difficult. If this is your first business, then there will be lots of new experiences and situations to deal with. When we push ourselves into new areas, we move outside of our comfort zone and into the fear zone. Here we can experience self-doubt and lack self confidence in making our decisions. Having a startup mentor, and someone to talk these situations through with, especially someone who has done and seen this many times before, will help offset these fears.
When we enter the learning zone, we acquire new tools to deal with the new found situation, in this area, a good coach will support with providing the tools for the situation and how to deal with the challenges and problems currently being faced. In the growth zone, the new skills are used, actions are completed, and goals achieved. This new area now becomes the comfort zone, as mastery of the new skills becomes the new norm. The benefit to the individual is that they can, when faced with this situation again, deal with it inside of their comfort zone, becuase they already have the knowledge and tools.
There is no denying it. When starting a business, I cannot think of any individual that I have dealt with that has not lacked confidence or certainty when making at least a handful of decisions each month in a startup. That is not to say that every time we have the answers exactly either. What a good startup mentor will do though, is helping to weigh up those options. Add a level of experience from similar situations and apply it to this instance. They will challenge and mediate a thought process. After this, you should have far more confidence in your decision and a newfound rigour to apply to such decisions in the future.
As a startup coach, I have my little black book (it’s actually an iPhone of course) of contacts that are invaluable for any startup. This ranges from legal advice, patent advice, marketing and branding expertise through to buyers and investors. Not every business needs every one of them. Some don’t need any. What a good mentor will be able to do is quickly network your business. Gearing you up with the right connections to succeed.
Starting a business is exciting, no one can deny it. There is, of course, a set of fundamental elements any business should have. The key example of this, as you will undoubtedly know, is the business plan. Yet so many times, I have worked with a business owner who does not have a business plan in place. It contains so many key pieces of information. Market Segmentation and alignment, financial forecasting, fall back positions, expansion propositions to name but a few. Without the right process and detail in a business, it can of course be a success. Following a plan and process, which allows itself to be moved and adapted through time, gives you an even stronger chance of success.
It sounds like a strange thing to highlight, but knowing how to phase the growth of a business is very important. Some businesses don’t take the opportunity to grow when they should. Others take the veiw that all growth is good, and grow, I don’t want to say too quickly. So I will say in the wrong way. Remember, not all business is good business. Knowing how to phase the growth of a business is a skill. This is rounded better with solid financial planning and process.
We recently conducted a survey for small businesses, when asked why a small business would choose not to engage a business consultant, the clear reason was that it was perceived to be too expensive. In fact, 46% of respondents thought hiring a business coach would be too expensive.
To offer real value to our clients, Akcela offers a range of solutions for any budget. We can offer hourly consultancy on an ad-hoc basis, to subscription style monthly access to a business mentor and ongoing business coaching.
Akcela consists of MBA Qualified Management Consultants. This means that all our consultants have not only had experience at director level posts within industry, but also have both a Masters Degree in Business Administration (MBA) as well as post graduate degree level diplomas in professional consulting. This makes Akcela different as not only can we offer real world experiences from managing large businesses with senior leadership positions, we reinforce this with academic grounding to cement the advice.
Another key difference, is that we understand that individuals have areas of strengths and weaknesses. If your lead business coach is advising in an area that another business mentor can support in a more effective way, we have the ability to align the right consultant to your situation.