Coaches often think that getting referrals is the holy grail.
"Someday I will have referrals coming in and I can relax."
"Referrals are the best. I don't have to work as hard."
"Referrals are a better way to get clients."
Coaches who are relying on other people to refer to them are not in a strong position. When we "need" someone else to put the client in our path it makes us dependent.
I offer to you that it makes us weaker as business owners.
I'm not suggesting that cold calling is better or advisable. It's not.
I remember when my business partner and best friend Michelle Bauman said the following to the students in the University of Santa Monica Coaching Program that we co-developed and were the lead facilitators of (along with Steve Chandler):
"My favorite clients are the ones that I created. I love referrals- and the act of creating a client out of my own connections and relationships is an amazing thing. I don't need people to refer - nothing stands in the way of me growing my practice."
Here's a recent post about this from a participant in the inaugural CFJ Coaching Success School:
WINNING REALIZATION I was just texting with a friend and told her I have a new 1:1 client. She congratulated me and asked if it was a referral. And it hit me, omg I CREATED this client! Like, out of the universe! Out of a thought, an email, a phone call, a connection. I'm sure I'll have a vulnerability hangover about this post, but this is blowing my mind right now.
A coach can GROW their practice this way, through their real connections with others, people they know from other parts of their lives, former professions, communities, etc.
That's what this coach did - she took time to reach out to people she used to work with in her former life as an executive. She knew that some of her prior colleagues were going through a lot because of management changes. She wrote to specific people thoughtfully and offered time to them.
Fast forward - she has a NEW client that she created out of a thought.
You Can Do This
We dive into this at the CFJ Coaching Success school. Coaches spend time slowing down and reflecting on the people they know, determining what makes sense in terms of connecting.
Coaches spend time thinking about people and thinking about who they would LOVE to serve. Then they get into ACTION.
If you are reading this thinking, "But I don't know anyone Carolyn. Like really - NOBODY."
We talk about this too - and you get into expanding your world...because...
You can't grow your coaching business when you don't have anyone in your world.
Referrals ARE great.
And - as Michelle said, my favorite clients are the ones that I created.
I'm committed to coaches in the CFJ Coaching Success school learning how to create clients- so that they aren't scratching their heads wondering how to "get people to refer more people to them."
No more waiting for others.
No more depending on others.
No more hoping you get sent someone.
Time to learn how to feed yourself - FOREVER.
School starts January 16. Coaches are already in and getting coaching in their businesses.
I'm Rooting for You,
To learn more about the CFJ Coaching Success School, click here.