Coaches help the most successful business leaders to be effective and efficient. Have you wondered if you need a business coach? We took some time to interview our top business coach and co-founder of Travelpreneur, to learn more about her story and success.
Hello Kate, nice to meet you. Tell us about yourself.
I’m a strategist, coach and consultant specializing in startups & online business, the founder of SixFigureFreelancers.com and co-founder of TravelpreneurTribe.com.
At the core, I am a problem solver, an empath & a brand builder.
A UX designer by trade, I’ve worked with more than 50 startups as a designer, marketer, product manager, strategist, analyst and advisor. I am a graduate of the Portland Seed Fund, served as a mentor at multiple accelerators and educational programs and led projects for several Fortune 500 companies, including Nike, HP, Apple and Microsoft. I hold a BFA in Design and an MBA in Marketing.
Obsessed with travel since a flight to Oregon at age six, I now travel full-time as a digital nomad and now run my businesses entirely online – often poolside from tropical locales – while working with startups around the world.
How did you get started with coaching? Why did you become a business coach?
In 2016, around the time I decided to join Remote Year, I began looking for ways to optimize my business and time. I signed up for a course with Mastin Kipp and stumbled into coaching – I knew right away I’d found my purpose.
Coaching allows me to help other driven people start their business AND design amazing lives – something I’m passionate about.
As a survivor of childhood abuse and trauma, I had turned to alcohol and numbing behavior for years and led a shell of a life. It wasn’t until I got sober in 2012 and began on a long journey of self-development and growth that I really started to love life, and learned that my past doesn’t indicate my future.
I’m no longer willing to settle for a mediocre life, and I absolutely love helping others live their best lives.
How is coaching different to training, consulting, therapy and mentoring?
My coaching programs are actually a blend of consulting, mentoring and coaching – I consider myself a business strategist first and foremost, but do a lot of mindset and accountability coaching with my clients as mindset is the #1 factor in an entrepreneurs success. Some coaches are focused exclusively on mindset or accountability, but one of my specialties is actually working with clients to ensure they are focused on the right tasks to grow their business and helping them identify what’s working and what’s not (consulting).
The biggest difference between coaching and therapy is that coaching focuses on your future desired outcomes and taking action to get specific results – i.e. bridging the gap from where someone is now & where they want to be. Therapy tends to analyze the past and look for the root cause in order to heal trauma and pain and begin to undo learned behavior. Coaching & consulting are more results oriented, whereas therapy is more feelings oriented. Mentoring and coaching are very similar, though a coach is typically more invested in the clients personal outcome (in addition to their business outcomes), and a coach is also more likely to call a client out on their weaknesses or push boundaries than a mentor might.
Why is personal development important?
As an entrepreneur, your mindset plays far more into your success than any other factor. Founders who fail to develop their personal growth will rarely last long – to grow a company we have to be able to grow into leadership roles, adapt to change, deal with uncertainty, overcome failures and fear – or we will walk away long before our company sees success. Building a business is hard, if it wasn’t, everyone would do it… growth-oriented founders have a better success rate as they are willing to learn new things and are better able to adjust.
Why develop personal power or leadership with coaching?
When I first started exploring becoming a coach I started asking people why they hired a coach. Many hired a coach simply because they wanted to feel supported, which made sense to me
But one of the most surprising answers to me was that they “wanted the shortcut.”
I’m a reader – I read an average of 2 books per week and love business and self-development books. I LOVE to learn. But many people don’t… they don’t want to read 400 business books. They don’t want to get an MBA. They don’t want to immerse themselves in new technology to understand how it all works. They don’t want to spend hours every day figuring things out, testing and analyzing.
So they hire coaches, consultants and employees to help them get the results they want with less effort – while feeling supported.
If I am the expert – why do I need a coach?
You might be an expert in what you do, but are you an expert in scaling your business? Are you an expert in selling what you do? Do you find yourself procrastinating or wasting dozens of hours googling what to do next to grow your business? A good coach will help you get from where you are to where you want to be faster than you can go alone, and usually with less pain and struggle. Additionally, you may end up with access to a coaches referral or business network, or a mastermind group that will expand your professional network.
If you want to do something you’ve never done, and you’d prefer to do it right the first time, a coach can likely help.
What success has your clients had using your services?
My clients rave about having a feeling of confidence when they work with me. I’ve had clients launch MVP’s & make a sale a year before planned, have their first 10K month, land their first $20k client, quit their jobs after just a few weeks, and I once had a client realize they were pursuing the wrong passion and needed to pivot 180 degrees.
I don’t do one-size-fits-all coaching because every client is different, and every business is different. My specialty is empowering new entrepreneurs in making the right decisions for them, in order to grow the business and create the lifestyle they desire, with confidence.
What can one expect when hiring a business coach?
This ranges with every coach out there. Most coaches have some sort of application process, followed by a call to get to know each other.
Sometimes this will be with the coach, sometimes with a salesperson. Many coaches offer “free strategy sessions,” which are really just long, formulaic sales pitches – there is even a script, designed to guide the potential client into their pain and offer themselves as the solution. This isn’t necessarily bad, provided the coach can offer you the results you desire, but I no longer practice this technique. I prefer to build relationships and instead have a short application process to make sure my experience is a match for any potential client, and then I schedule a simple call to talk through the business goals and my programs.
Once you’ve agreed to hire a coach, you’ll likely do some intake paperwork and set goals for your coaching program, life and/or business and schedule your coaching session for the duration of your program with some consistency (weekly is best).
Regardless of the process, the most important when hiring a coach is that you trust them.
Make sure you feel comfortable being 100% honest with any potential coach, and that they have either done what you want to do, are certified in coaching or have proven results guiding other people through what you want to do. Anyone can call themselves a coach these days and unfortunately many are scammers. Personally, I wouldn’t hire a 21-year old coach who got lucky to guide me through building a multi-million dollar business – but I’ve seen some sales pages that are pretty darn enticing! Do your research and look for someone who has relevant experience or expertise, don’t get swindled by top-notch copywriting.