Finding a coach or trainer to help you with your VA business can be a challenge. There are many great people out there and it can be hard to differentiate between what people offer.
But when you find a great coach, magical things can happen. A great coach and trainer is there to inspire you, to guide you and to challenge you and they have the ability to unleash great things from within you that may otherwise never have been realised.
So how do you find the perfect VA trainer or coach for you?
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all coach out there, just as there isn’t one simple recipe for success, but from my experience, it is possible to determine whether someone is a good fit for you by looking at five key qualities:
- Their experience – do they share common experiences with you? Have they overcome some of the challenges that you are facing? There are plenty of ‘book-smart’ experts out there, but some of the most valuable advice comes from people who have been there, done that, bought the t-shirt and bring that experience to the table to allow you to learn from their successes and failures. For example, I made the transition from employed administrative professional to Virtual Assistant, built my own successful VA business (and several other businesses from start-ups to established entities) and run my organisation alongside raising a young family; these real life experiences have taught me so many valuable lessons that I am able to share with the professionals that I support, mentor and coach.
- Their communication style – do you find their communication style comfortable? Admittedly, coaches aren’t their to simply be your best friend! It’s so important to be challenged by your coach in order to break free of your comfort zone and make progress in your life, health or career, but if you are terrified by their abrupt manner or frustrated that they only want to communicate via email when you need to talk things through on the phone, it could be that there is a coach out there who is better suited to your unique needs and requirements.
- Their values – do you admire their ethics? Do you share their values? To get the most out of the relationship you have with a coach you need to respect them; As well as being a coach, I work hard to raise the profile of Virtual Assistants and the wider freelance community in a positive and professional manner, and I hope that this comes across in the work that I do. The VIPVA accreditation scheme, membership and nurture programmes, my coaching and mentoring services, the free Facebook community and all of the resources I curate and collate are designed to help people find greater success, profitability and contentment in their businesses. Yes, I need to pay the bills just as much as the next person, but I really do want to elevate the whole VA industry so that the phrase ‘Virtual Assistant’ becomes synonymous with quality, professionalism and trustworthiness.
- Their customer testimonials – what do previous coaching customers say about the coach in question? Testimonials can provide a great insight into how the coaching process has worked for other people in your situation, but don’t take these into account without considering the other factors I mention as what works for one individual isn’t necessarily going to work for you.
- Their skills – does your coach invest in themselves? Are their skills up to date, relevant and competitive in your industry? Can they provide useful practical training as well as more general emotional support? This is something that I am absolutely passionate about! I recently completed an intensive training programme to become Infusionsoft/Keap certified in their innovative sales and marketing automation software. I have also successfully completed a Facebook advertising course this year, as well as attending training days in content creation and social media marketing (to name but a few!). These are all skills that are useful in the successful running of my own businesses, but also prove invaluable for coaching clients too; though Keap may not be appropriate software for everyone, for example, the idea of streamlining business processes for efficiency purposes can be applied to a number of different aspects of business. The insights I have gained from my time as a full time Virtual Assistant and from the professional development and training courses I have completed all help to give my coaching clients the most comprehensive and up-to-date advice and guidance possible.
So if you are looking for a coach you can trust and work with effectively to develop yourself and your business, take a little time to make sure that they are the best fit for you.
Investing in a great coach is ultimately an investment in your business and your future, so spend your money wisely!
If you have any questions about the VA training that we offer through APVA (and how it has helped hundreds of others start their own successful businesses), you can learn more here: https://www.apva.org.uk/va-foundation-course/ or can easily get in touch via the Facebook page!