Many coaches and trainers struggle to get precise results for their clients
And it's not for want of trying, either. They work very hard, probably too hard, and yet the clients don't get the results they seek. The question is: how we go from mediocrity to excellence? Find out the guidelines to becoming a good coach.
When you start an online business, you're told not to get personal when someone asks for a refund.
And yet it's not always the refund that gets your attention. When we first started Psychotactics and put The Brain Audit for sale, it was just 20 pages long. And the price? It started at $29, went up to $39, then to $59. And it was still that 20-page book. Some clients would read the book and then ask for a refund.
In that refund statement they would say, this book has too few pages. That kind of statement stuck with me because what I started to do was write more material, add more stuff to the book. And somewhere along the way, I was stopped in my tracks by my wife, Renuka.
About eight or 10 years ago, I was writing the notes for the uniqueness course. I think I got to about 90 pages and couldn't write any additional material without trying to put in some padding to that book. I complained to Renuka about “how I was able to write just 90 pages.” Renuka turned to me in astonishment, and exclaimed: “90 pages! That's a lot of information. Can't you make it smaller?”
It's then that I first started to realise what a coach really does, what an author really does, what a speaker really does. It wasn't like I understood the concept entirely, but it was the start of a journey. And It all came home to me one day when I was speaking to a client, and he said to me, ” I don't need a map book. I don't need all those pages. I don't need to go from A to B to C to AC—to whatever a map book does. I need a GPS.”
And if you want to be a good writer, a good speaker, a good coach or trainer, you need to act like a GPS.
But what does a GPS do?
It does quite a few things.
1) It gets rid of 99% of the information and lets you see just the least amount needed.
2) It gets you from point A to point B as quickly as possible.
3) If the route from point A to point B is jammed, it will take you down the side roads, but it will get you to Point B. It will not let you get stuck in a jam.
In 2014, the post-production of my podcast was driving me crazy.
It's one thing to record a podcast. It's quite another task to remove the noise, the clicks and to make it sound presentable to the audience. All around me, podcasts were starting to ramp up their sound and mine languished because I had no idea what I needed to do. And it wasn't because for lack of persistence, either.
At first, I decided to outsource the post-production of the audio. Renuka heard the result and said it sounded worse than before. But I had spent so much time trying to find someone to handle the post-production, that I ignored her feedback.
Several podcasts went by before I realised that indeed, the podcasts were sounding worse than before. At which point I contacted a friend from a radio station. Would he know where I could find someone who would improve the audio quality, I asked? He knew someone, but that person was busy.
And so I went, from pillar to post trying to find solutions to my problem. To give you an understanding of the timeline, the entire exercise took several months. In the end, I even paid a sound engineer to come across and help me. But despite every possible effort, I was not very far from the starting point.
That December, we headed to Nashville to conduct a workshop
One of the clients at the workshop was Bryan Orr. In between breaks, I explained my problem to Bryan. “Do you have 10 minutes at the end of the day”? He asked me. I sure did. I had all the time in the world if he was going to solve my problem. The evening rolled along, and everyone headed back to their rooms, and Bryan told me to focus on three elements.
Element 1: Noise reduction
Element 2: Noise gate
Element 3: Compression dynamics.
I wasn't even familiar with the software Bryan was talking about
I could see there were dozens of options. And Bryan ignored them all—all but those three, that is. Do you know what Bryan did for me? He acted like a GPS. He took me from point A to point B, as quickly as possible. He ignored all the extraneous information and focused solely on what was needed to get the job done. And if there were a jam along the way, he would have taken another route and got my problem solved. To this day, after recording a podcast, I use just those three elements.
A good coach is like a GPS. Be a GPS.
P.S. There's a flip side to this story too. Bryan lives in Florida, and for some reason, he'd never eaten Indian food. Since we all go out for lunch and dinner at the workshops, we ended up at an Indian restaurant up the road. And it was Bryan's turn to be confused. What should he choose? I, in turn, told him what to avoid, and what to eat, instead. I think my debt was more or less repaid. Bryan can't stop talking about Indian food. And I can't stop talking about how he helped me with my podcast sound.