This is a fun time of year for sports fans: Baseball is in the playoffs, hockey is starting a new season and we have both college as well as professional football. What is the common thread among all of them?
Coaches help them pursue success! And not just one coach, multiple coaches.
Keep in mind, these are pro athletes who have dedicated, in most cases, their entire lives to their profession. From the time they were kids they played their respective sports, honing their skills to make a high school team, then a college team that only a small proportion of high school players make then on to the pro level teams where getting a position is about as likely as winning the lottery.
So if we compared pro athletes to business professionals they have certainly put forth the same effort and achieved the same level of success as the best of the best in business.
Then why, in business, do we tend to brush off the idea of using coaches to achieve greater success? Is it ego? Is it not understanding what a coach could bring to our game?
Whatever it is we need to consider the idea that a coach can help us hit home runs or put the ball in the end zone.
For those pro athletes it is a combination of coaches that make up their support teams. The head coach oversees the team, he/she is the chief strategist (and yes there are advisors and coaches to the coach). Then there are coaches for the specific position groups that the players play or skills that are important. There are also strength and fitness coaches, nutrition coaches, psychology coaches and even coaches that help young players adapt to their new found wealth and responsibilities.
Again, these are the top tier in their profession, they have been doing this all their lives and it is safe to say they know what a player in their position should be doing.
Even if we look at college football, what is considered by many to be an unfair advantage used by the most successful programs?
Being able to hire too many coaches!
But enough about them, let’s talk about you.
If you are looking at a franchise or already own one what is your plan to gain that same “unfair” advantage over your competition?
Well, first of all you are looking at, or already own, a franchise. Franchises are teams of coaches and subject matter experts that you are hiring to accelerate your game plan.
Do you know what one of their primary complaints are industry wide? That their franchisees don’t use them enough. Sure, most have programs to proactively go get in front of their franchisees, but should coaches have to chase their stars?
Consider pro football for a moment, what does a quarterback do when they finish a series and walk off the field? They walk directly to their coordinator (coaches come with many titles) and sit down with a computer tablet to go over every play in that series to see what they did, what their teammates did and what their competitors did so that they will be better prepared for the next time they walk on the field.
Who will you walk off the field and talk to after every series of strategic actions?
Will it be your franchisor’s marketing group for your next growth spurt, the support group to get added skills for your team or the training group to prepare to open your next location?
Corporate America may not reinforce the benefit of coaches since their systems often have supervisors focusing on accountability. Most often this encourages their team to hide any need for coaching or support. Employees often fear that seeking help or guidance will hurt their chances for a promotion or a raise. The one exception is CEO’s who often use one or more coaches to stay at the top of their game.
As a franchisee, look at yourself as the leading business athlete you are and use all of the coaching that is available from your franchise company… and then some.
Do you think the best athletes stop at using the coaches the team provides? NO CHANCE!
A top athlete knows the physical difference between them and other top athletes is narrow, they need to find ways to expand the gap. That can be done via hard work to build strength, skills, improve cardio ability or how they see the field and use strategy.
Year round many athletes get nutritional coaching, go to visit top coaches for guidance to improve throwing or other skills as well as for personal coaching in life and their business.
There are a couple great business coaching franchises that could provide you a layer of support on top of what your franchisor offers and since they are franchises themselves they understand the systems that you need to dovetail into. So while your franchisor may be on the other side of the country, you can be face to face with a high powered business coach on a regular basis.
The goal is to continuously sharpen your skill set so that you can compete and achieve your greatest goals and those you haven’t even imagined yet.
As I type this I am preparing to step away from my office during one of the busiest times of the year and take a road trip to see one of my coaches and a group of entrepreneurs he as assembled so that we can compare notes, think outside the box and see how others achieve their goals.
And never forget that there is a life outside business; get coaching for your health and fitness, for your travel to see different places, and maybe even become the coach yourself for your child’s sports team.
Nobody wins a Super Bowl, World Series, Stanley Cup or makes it into the Hall Of Fame by accident. That applies to successful business owners as well.
What is your success story? Let’s go find it!
George Knauf is a highly sought after, trusted advisor to many companies; Public, Independent and Franchised, of all sizes and in many markets. His 20 plus years of experience in both start-up and mature business operations makes him uniquely qualified to advise individuals that have dreamed of going into business for themselves in order to gain more control, independence, time flexibility and to be able to earn in proportion to their real contribution. Contact the Franchising USA Expert George’s Hotline 703-424-2980.