Contributor: Amber Voight
Coaching is something we grow into, with personal development and studying what our own personal mentors practice. Coaching isn’t the same as managing, and I feel sometimes in network marketing we confuse the two.
In coaching we are leading the way, so start working on your own business and personal development. A coach will never advise someone to do something they are not willing to do themselves.
Coaching is helping distributors grow by asking them questions, rather than telling them what to do; by provoking thought, rather than giving directions.
Here are six principles for effective coaching I learned from The Center for Creative Leadership:
1) Build a relationship – This will allow the distributor you are coaching to feel safe, comfortable, and more willing to truly open up during your coaching sessions.
2) Work on the distributor’s agenda – Don’t assume their goals are the same as yours. Ask questions to find out what they are looking to get out of their business in the next 30, 60 and 90 days.
3) Facilitate and collaborate – Socrates always led his students with questions. The best coaches do not give direct answers or act like the experts. Focus on the other person’s needs and avoid filling the session with your own life stories or theories. Although you may suggest several options for responding to a question, the ultimate choice should rest with the distributor – with you acting as the facilitator and collaborator.
4) Advocate self-awareness – You want your distributor to learn to recognize their own strengths and weaknesses. As a coach, you must also know the impact of your own behaviors on those around you. Demonstrate a sense of awareness of yourself, which will bring out a sense of awareness in your distributor.
5) Promote learning from experience – Most people can only learn, grow, and change through a series of personal experiences. Always help your distributor reflect on past events and analyze what went wrong and what went right. When we teach experimental learning, our distributors will continue to learn long after our coaching session.
6) Finally, model what you teach – This last core principle is the most difficult to embody, as it’s putting into practice the leadership lessons you’ve been trying to communicate.
Feeling frustrated that a current coaching relationship isn’t going well? Go back to the basics and see how well you are applying these 6 principles!
BONUS: Here are some great coaching questions:
- What’s the reason you want success in your business? (If the answer is MONEY, ask WHY they need the money)
- What are your personal goals for the next 30, 60, and 90 days?
- What do you feel has been holding you back from reaching these goals?
- What do you think you can implement that could possibly lead you closer to those goals?
- What are you currently reading?
This last question is a BIG ONE! Most people will answer, “Nothing.” This is the perfect time to give them a personal development book, which will also serve the purpose of a test. How quickly they read it will show you how deserving they are of your time.
As Tom “Big Al” Schreiter teaches in his book, Building Network Marketing Leaders Vol. 1, “You can mentor the masses, but you can coach only a few.”
Amber Voight is a mother of three young boys and a multiple six-figure earner in network marketing. From her home in Minnesota, she leads a growing international team of close to 100,000 members spread out over North America, Australia, and the UK. Amber reached the highest rank in her company using her coaching and social media networking skills. Look for Amber’s upcoming book The 7-Cent Decision: Building Your Best Future Through Network Marketing, to be released in February 2016.