Working with a business coach can be a great way to improve your strategic thinking, your long-term business planning and focus your resources on the right projects.
But are you getting the best possible advice and up-to-date information from the business consultant you’re working with? If they’re not up to speed with the latest advances in cloud-based accounting and FinTech software solutions then you may be missing out on some very important benefits of using these online systems.
The need for a progressive business coach
Why is cloud accounting so central to good business advice? Because it gives you an unprecedented view of your business information: and that’s important.
When you’re paying a substantial fee for a professional business coach, you want to know you’re getting the best possible service for your money. And hiring a coach who is au fait with the latest in cloud tech is vital if you want to get true value.
There are two key elements that need to be in place to get the best from using cloud accounting software with your business coach:
- Your coach needs to be able to understand the numbers and business information that you’re taking to them.
- Your coach needs to be aware of the new cloud solutions and services on the market – and how they can help to carry your business forward.
Integration with the cloud will be different for every company. I’ve talked to a hugely successful business that was using basic Excel spreadsheets to review their accounts and where their business coach could see that a move to the cloud would add real value – they’re now using Xero and working with us to produce business information that’s of real use to them and their coach.
But I’ve also experienced the other end of the scale, where it’s the business that is tech-savvy and using cloud solutions and the business coach is the laggard who wants everything taken out of the cloud and downloaded as spreadsheets.
Ultimately, if you’ve hired a business coach to help your business progress then that coach must be progressive too. They need to take the time to understand the cloud solutions you’re using and help you to interpret the data and reports you’re producing.
You’re investing in a professional coach, so their job is to help you and to use every available tool at their disposal to do so.
Make it a two-way relationship with your coach
There is a note of caution to be had when working with a business coach. Although this person is a professional, it doesn’t mean you need to follow their advice blindly.
Pushing back on advice is healthy and helps to create a trusted, two-way relationship that will provide a much stronger working partnership. Trust, understanding and respect have to be built up by both parties.
When a business coach first comes into your business, I’d usually expect them to give your business some key changes to be made in the first three months. They’ll identify the main lynchpin that will bring about change and growth and will help you to focus your efforts effectively.
This gets you on track and building improvements, and – importantly – helps to start building a trusted relationship.
Getting the support and advice you need
A good business coach is there to support and guide you when you need them, whatever the business issue may be.
It could be that you’re experiencing some people challenges where there’s resistance to some planned changes. Your coach should be there to listen, understand your issue and provide a solution that gets your employees on board with new ideas and engaged with the development process.
Equally, if you’ve come up with your own ideas for a solution, a good coach has to be open to these ideas and suggestions and help you weigh up the pros and cons. And this is where cloud solutions can be so effective – allowing you and your business coach to look at key performance indicators (KPIs), prior-month actuals and forecasted projections to gather the best possible pool of information before you dive in with a resolution.
Your perfect business coach will be abreast of the cloud solutions out there and will understand how each tool can support your business. It’s a combination of two complimentary skills:
- Understanding the unique challenges in your business
- Being able to swiftly and decisively identify the solutions that can break down these barriers to success.
The perfect business trinity
At Fresh Financials, we think there’s a perfect ‘business trinity’ approach to long-term success for your enterprise.
In the perfect scenario, you’re the key point in a triangle made up of your business, your modern bookkeeper and your cloud-friendly business coach.
- You provide the vision, the business goals and the experience and knowledge of your industry and business.
- Your bookkeeper takes care of your finances and provides the numbers, reports and financial analysis.
- Your business coach takes your vision, and your bookkeeper’s numbers and gives you the personal guidance and strategic planning needed to drive success for the company.
If you’re looking to get the best possible value from your business coach, come and talk to us about linking up your bookkeeper with your trusted coach.
Get in touch with us to have a chat about how we could work in partnership with your business and your coach to create the perfect advisory triangle.