What distinguishes successful coaches from those that fall short? Why do some coaches build thriving coaching businesses while others’ coaching businesses barely survive? While answers to these questions may vary, many successful coaches share these common traits.

Successful coaches . . .

Rank high in emotional intelligence.

Emotional intelligence (EQ) is the foundation for a host of critical skills and, quite possibly, your success. EQ consists of four key skills — self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management.
In a 2014 article for Forbes Magazine, author Travis Bradberry, author of Emotional Intelligence 2.0 writes, “We’ve found that 90% of top performers are also high in emotional intelligence. On the flip side, just 20% of bottom performers are high in emotional intelligence. You can be a top performer without emotional intelligence, but the chances are slim.”
The good news is EQ can be developed. 

Develop strong business skills.

You can be a highly trained and skilled coach but without strong business skills, your coaching business will likely flounder. Successful coaches know how to attract and retain clients, market their services, manage cash flow, and understand the basics of launching and running a business. Many top coaches devote as much time to business development as they do to coaching. 

Maintain a strong support network.

Coaching is a solitary profession. While most coaches belong to one or more professional coaching networks, professional groups generally fall short when it comes to the ongoing support most coaches need, especially when they’re first starting out.
To ensure your success, be intentional about building and maintaining a strong network of support. Consider hiring a mentor coach as well as meeting with other professional coaches locally. And be sure to get away from your desk a few times a week to spend time with friends and colleagues.

Make continuing education a priority.

Successful coaches commit to continuing education. The field of coaching is young, and new research and applications are still being discovered. Successful coaches are ones who stay at the forefront of new developments in the field, always learning and always growing. The best coaches are not only students of coaching but pupils of culture as well. 

Possess strong people skills.

Coaching, at its core, is relational. If you have problems connecting with others or honoring viewpoints that are different from yours, building a thriving coaching business will be a challenge. The good news is there are many wonderful tools and resources available today to help you better communicate and connect with others.
What do you think? What other characteristics do successful coaches possess?

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