Let’s first talk about coaching skills themselves.  You know, I got an email from one of our subscribers saying, “you know Karen, you talk a lot about marketing.  But what about my own coaching skills, about getting better at that?”  And I thought that is such a really good point.  One of the reasons I talk a lot about marketing for coaches is that’s kind-of our pain point.  I don’t talk as much about coaching skills because I think that’s what we love to do and love to master.  But there is a correlation between the two that I’d like to talk about today.

So there is a connection between your coaching skills and marketing.  And if you’ll remember, I’ve talked about this statistic last year.  I read a study that said 73% of people who hired executive coaches did so by referral or we can call it “word of mouth”.  And I think that’s true for most coaches and coaching engagements.  People hire through word of mouth.  That’s a fastest way to get hired and to do all the coaching you want.  So if you are an excellent coach, if your skills are so amazing, then the word will get out and there will be referrals and there will be this word of mouth marketing.   So it’s worth talking about coaching skills and how to make each one of us a better coach.  Now I’ve been working with a few people that are getting their MCC, they’re applying for their MCC.  So, I’m really immersed in these coaching skills these days.  And what I’ve realized is there are four basic skills that we have as coaches,,, that we use.  If we could use those even a little bit better we would be more masterful.

The first skill is presence and what that means is you want to have a great coaching presence.  You want to be able to be fully present for your clients.  There are two tips I want to give you about this.  One, which I think a lot of people talk about, is before you get into your coaching session do whatever it is for you to become fully present.  You could meditate.  You light a candle.  Me, I actually put some essential oils on before creating this for you today.  So do whatever that is that you love to do that brings you into your full presence.

The second tip I have about this is maybe a little more subtle. That is to get coaching and get coached because we all have blockers. Have you ever heard the saying, “your clients are going to bring your own stuff,,,that you’re working on,,  into their coaching session”?  That’s what the law of attraction does.  Just so that you don’t get triggered by them, that you’re not putting your own stuff onto your client, get coached and clear out all your blockers.  That will help you to have a much fuller presence during your coaching sessions.

The next skill I want to talk about is listening, especially with our master certified coaches. You know, we really want to listen deeply and we want to give a lot of space to our clients.  We know that our clients are whole and perfect  and complete, and that they all have their own answers.  So if we can give them more space in listening, they will get to those answers quicker and they will trust them.  Here’s a tip, if your client has said something and answered a question, maybe count to “one thousand three” before asking the next question to see if there’s something else they want to say.

To do so, you would ask the question.  They would finish talking. Then you would say silently to yourself, “One-thousand-one, one-thousand-two, one-thousand-three”. Now, chances are they may say something more.  They may go deeper. They may get an insight that they never did before.  If they don’t, you can ask your next question but give some spacious listening.  It’s very difficult these days to get that kind of listening.  I don’t see that kind of listening happening in too many places.  So there’s your presence and you’re listening.

The next skill that would probably help you to become an even better coach is, questioning.  And you know, my father used to say to me, “You ask too many questions.”   Then when I became coach I said, “isn’t it great? Now I get paid for asking all these questions?”  😉  And he thought it was great too, he smiled.  But the truth is, when we ask the person a question, it shows that we believe that they have the answer.  Even the very act of asking a question will really support your client.

There’s another thing I want to say about questioning because many coaches, especially those that get to the MCC level with over 2,500 hours under their belt, a lot of us have been doing a combination in the field (like we do mentoring & coaching, consulting & coaching).  We have a lot of expertise.  So we have to go back to kind-of those first months when we were in coach training.  And really ask a question instead of sharing expertise.  And I think that really takes a little bit of UN-learning to do.  Keep this in mind in your next coaching session.  Instead of sharing a resource or your perspective, or your experience, or what you know, try asking a question.  Ask the person, what do you think?  What have you looked at?  What have you researched?  And chances are they will have that answer, and it will make so much more sense for them.

The 4th coaching skill I want to talk about is acknowledgement.  An acknowledgment is so powerful because we know that whatever we focus on expands.  We want focus on things that are going to help our clients get to their goals.  In transactional coaching a client has a goal.  Let’s just say it’s a small business owner and they want to be more profitable.  Here we can measure that goal and we can see how we’re going towards that goal.  If they’ve become more profitable in a month, we can acknowledge that they’ve gotten towards that goal, they’ve made more profit.  That’s great! That will help for that month, but also acknowledge their commitment to doing what is needed to create the profitability.

Also acknowledge their vision, their values, the qualities that they’re bringing to the table.  Because even if they don’t make that particular specific goal one month, they will make the qualities.  They will bring themselves.  And so this is something that we can acknowledge all the time.  If we continue to acknowledge their commitment, their commitments going to get stronger and grow.  It will turn that transactional coaching into transformational coaching.  They’ll be working from a deeper place.  So acknowledge those.

Those are the four skills you could easily do.  It’s something very simple to increase those skills in your coaching:  Presence, Questioning, Listening, and Acknowledgement.  Once you do, you’re coaching will be even better than it is now (because I knew it’s pretty great now).  Anyone who wants to be a coach and wants to listen to people like this has those skills. We’ve been doing this our whole lives.  So once you do that, you will be able to be referred even more through word of mouth and this will help your marketing too.

If you want some more tips like this, we give tips like this all the time in our Coaching Success Club.  We actually have a team of tips.  Not only do you get my perspective, but you get perspectives from a marketing expert, a tech expert, and all of the other people in the community.  This is a great time to join the Coaching Success Club as the price is going up on June 10th.

If you get in before that, you will have the best price available and that’ll be locked in.  And if you want to find out even more tips about how to grow your business, I’m giving a webinar called, Behind the Scenes of a Successful Coaching Business.  This free webinar is on Monday, June, 4th.  I hope to see you there or in the club.  I really am committed to your success as a coach.  I thank you for being a coach in the world of serving others and helping raise the consciousness of all of us.   Signing off with lots of love and great joy, Karen