After delivering over a hundred coaching programs, I’ve uncovered 3 key aspects a group coaching program usually offers: Content, Coaching, and Community.
In Part 1 of this blog series, we focused on content creation and the different types of content: pre-created, on the go, and hybrid. In Part 2, we’ll take a closer look at coaching and cover these specific topics:
- Definition of coaching
- Different ways to deliver coaching as part of your group programs.
- Group size and how it affects coaching format
- Setting expectations
- Upselling the next coaching offer
Definition of Coaching:
The purpose of coaching is to inspire others to take action. If people could get results just by buying a program there would be no purpose for coaching. So, ultimately, the goal of coaching is implementation support. When clients get stuck they look for support. They need to get unstuck and that’s when coaching is invaluable. Coaching is implementation support clients need to move forward.
How do coaches help clients get unstuck?
Coaches can help their clients in between calls by providing homework and exercises for the client. The purpose of these assignments is to help those clients get unstuck. The process of working through those exercises and meeting with the coach helps clients achieve insight. They get unstuck and move forward.
For example, in one of my group coaching programs, I help clients create their first virtual summits. I could sell that program as a 7 module course and a client could follow the steps.
However, the reason I deliver the virtual summit as a group coaching program is that I know clients will get stuck. They will encounter mindset issues or fear and not be able to move forward. For this reason, coaching is invaluable. And I believe coaching should be included in your programs even if you feel like the material is enough.
The different ways to offer coaching in a group program:
Coaching can be delivered in a variety of ways within the structure of the coaching program. You could offer or include:
- Weekly live group coaching calls, where group members come together to ask questions, clarify the training material and connect and support each other. Depending on group size you may choose to coach a few clients or pick a commonly discussed question.
- 1 on 1 coaching sessions and designate the number of sessions included in the coaching program. In fact, clients may be drawn to your group coaching program because of the opportunity to work with you 1 on 1. They may also decide to work longer with you after having experienced the benefit of focused coaching.
- Create office hours – You could create office hours for your clients. For example, you may choose to offer every Monday for people to schedule 1 on 1 laser sessions. These sessions could be 15 minutes long. Each week determines the amount of time you’ll offer laser sessions. Once those hours run out, clients will have to wait until the following week to schedule sessions.
- Homework/client journaling, where the clients engage with you through journaling and Q&A. This exchange often opens the doors to coaching more about the topic. You’ll better understand the client’s progress as well as what’s preventing them from moving forward. You could ask the same question every week or vary the questions based on the topic. The client journal feature in Group Coaching Genie allows you to invite clients to answer certain questions or submit their homework, insights, and breakthroughs. Common questions may include:
- What’s been your biggest challenge this week?
- What’s been your biggest insight
- What have you accomplished this week?
- What have you created as a result of the last module?
- Goal setting and accountability is another way to deliver coaching. Clients want to become unstuck and in order to get unstuck, they need to set goals and be held accountable.
- Contests help keep clients engaged and moving forward. Everyone likes to win and often they will work for it. You can use contests as a way to ensure clients complete homework. For example, they can only win if they complete daily assignments.
Group Size affects coaching format, so set clear expectations:
Group size impacts the amount of 1 on 1 coaching you can provide, so it’s important to set clear expectations within your group. Make sure everyone knows they may not get 1 on 1 coaching when your group is large.
It’s easier to offer individual sessions when the group is smaller, but if the program has 50 people, the format changes. Everyone will not get coaching on the calls. You can offset this by selecting 3 to 5 people to coach live in front of the group, but make sure you emphasize the importance of not tuning out while other people are being coached.
Their challenges and your coaching could very well relate to the other clients’ challenges. Make sure you tell the group to really listen and pay attention. They can definitely benefit from hearing others being coached. When you set clear expectations you’ll avoid having clients being disappointed by not having 1 on 1 coaching with you.
Upselling the Next Coaching Offer:
The 1 on 1 sessions you offer during a group program creates a great opportunity to sell private coaching. You must honor the time allotted in a group coaching scenario and 1 on 1 sessions are limited. However, if a client feels like they would feel more comfortable with 1 on 1 coaching, then you have an opportunity to upsell. Those clients can buy individual coaching from you or you may choose to offer smaller group sessions.
For example, when I offer a Webinars that Sell Group Coaching Program, I also offer a Webinar Success Accelerator Program towards the end of the program as an upsell. That program has twice as much of the investment, but clients get more attention and feedback. Another benefit is those clients are truly committed to the process because they decided to upgrade.
Coaching is a critical component of your group coaching programs. Coaching is the implementation of your content. It’s what turns the topic into action and gets results for your clients. Coaching is also the main thing that separates information (books, courses, etc) from transformation. There are many ways to offer coaching throughout your group coaching program, so pick the methods that most aligns with your style.
Lastly, remember if clients enjoy working 1 on 1 with you, use that as an opportunity to upsell individual coaching sessions. The most distinguishing factor between a course and a group coaching program is you! Clients get stuck but with your help, they get unstuck and experience the success they were hoping for.
Milana is an entrepreneur, business strategist, and marketing mentor to coaches, authors, and speakers. She is the author of two books, “Coaching Millions” and “Simplicity Entrepreneurship”, the creator of telesummit. She is also the creator of Coaching Genie, an online platform for designing and delivering coaching programs with ease. She came from Soviet Ukraine almost three decades ago as a classical musician with zero knowledge of the business world and has since built multiple six and seven-figure businesses. Today she’s passionate about showing entrepreneurs how to use simplicity as a growth strategy. Goodbye complexity and overwhelm. Hello, simplicity, profits, and ease.