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The future of coaching discussion will return in 2 weeks.

, October 30, 2002 

ear Today's Coach Reader:

Think Southwest Airlines is in the airline business?
Think again.
Southwest is actually in the transportation business and competes with cars in some markets.  If they thought they were in the airline business they'd start thinking like every other airline and would be stuck within that box.

Think State Farm is in the insurance/protection business?
State Farm is really in the peace of mind business.  Insurance is a need.  Peace of mind is a want.  They wisely sell to the want.

Think Proctor & Gamble is in the soap business?
Not really.
Proctor & Gamble is really in the branding business.  They just happen to specialize in soap.

Think the Graduate School of Coaching is really in the coach training business?
Close, but it's much bigger than that.
We're really in the coach success business, which just happens to include coach training.  That gives us an edge in the marketplace because coach training is just one component of a coach's success and we're focusing on the bigger/full service picture that coaches want (and need).

Think you're in the coaching business?
Well, that's somewhat true, but that's only part of the story.
Coaches are in the achievement business.  Or the personal development business.  Or the happiness business. Or the executive development business. We just happen to use coaching as the format, structure and style of the relationship and use coaching skills and the coaching label as our preferred packaging.

Who cares?  Why does it matter to know what business you're really in, as a coach?
It does matter and here's how asking yourself "What business am I really in?" will help...

1. You'll start thinking bigger -- beyond the label (and some call it the tether) of coach/coaching.
When you identify what business you are in, you start focusing on a much larger market -- much larger than the market for coaches and coaching.  Bigger market means more opportunity -- and less 'translation/explanation' required for those unfamiliar with the word 'coach.'

2. You'll start focusing on what you do best and packaging yourself around that.
In addition to learning coaching skills, it's essential to also learn knowledge, models, concepts and situational solutions that work for your clients. Coaching skills and proficiencies are very important but the marketplace is currently rewarding coaches with specific knowledge or expertise in addition to great coaching skills.

3. You'll start looking for more ways to serve your markets -- and NOT limit it to 'just' coaching.  
Creative solutions and packages (coaching or not) is what the marketplace really wants.  Coaching is a key part -- but only part -- of the package.

Okay, but how do I find out what business I am really in?

This is where you get to be really creative.  Here are some examples of the type of businesses coaches are really in.

Feel free to use this list as a way to get started...

The success business
The balance business
The financial independence business
The evolution business
The mastery business
The training business
The proficiencies business
The transformation business
The joy business
The love business
The systems business
The lifestyle design business
The entrepreneur challenge business
The superconductivity business
The attraction business
The personal satisfaction business
The situational solutions business

I hope that this was useful.


Thomas J. Leonard

Note:  The Future of Coaching Series will return in 2 weeks.

Personal Note:
Hey, greetings from Sydney where it's always a day ahead of the Americas; kind of fun, actually, even with the 14-hour overnight flight from Los Angeles.  Kudos to Qantas for the impressive service and to the gate agent who got me an exit row, window.  Yep, no biz class for us; we run a lean operation at CoachVille in order to give back as much as possible to the 22,500 CoachVille members in 107 countries.  If you haven't joined CoachVille, visit  It's free, for a lifetime.  And, while you're at it, check out the live events in your area at    -T


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