As we continue this Foundations for Your Coaching Business series, I want to dedicate this third episode to the idea of CEO mindset. For this, I offer 5 concepts. However, prior to considering them, you must first own and solidify the truth that you are, in fact, a CEO.
If you are coaching others as a business, and not simply an enjoyable hobby, you are the CEO of your business. But this, for most people, is a huge identity shift. It can feel intimidating, even foreign, and as I discuss it, it may feel like I must be referring to someone else. But I assure you, I am talking to you. So envision this new version of you, and let’s talk about embracing a strong CEO mindset as a foundation for your business.
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Welcome to the Masterful Coach Podcast with Molly Claire, where coaches learn skill mastery, business mastery, and life mastery at a whole new level. If you are serious about creating a meaningful coaching business that makes a difference, you are in the right place. And now your host, master life and business coach, Molly Claire.
Hey, coach. Before we dive into this episode about CEO Mindset, I wanna make sure that you know we are currently enrolling for the Masterful Coach Foundations program. This is especially exciting because those of you that join now will have the opportunity to join our community in person for a live event in June. So this would be definitely an added bonus.
So if you’ve been waiting for the right time to work with me and be a part of this incredible community of coaches to master your coaching and move your business forward, now is definitely the time. You can go to mollyclaire.com, click on ‘Work With Me’, and you will find there the opportunity to apply for Masterful Coach Foundations where we use the 10K Accelerator Method. All right, coach. Let’s dive in to CEO mindset as a foundation for your coaching business.
Hey coach, welcome to this continued conversation on the podcast about building a strong foundation in your business. This is the third episode in this series, all about the fundamentals, all about that foundation. And remember, whether you’ve had your business for five minutes or five decades, it’s important to take a look at the foundation, what needs to still be laid or built? Where is your foundation weak? And where are some things that might be missing altogether? So that’s the conversation that we’re having today. I’m focusing with you on CEO mindset as one of the fundamentals in your foundation.
And before I share with you these five concepts around having a strong CEO mindset, I wanna talk with you first about the identity shift that you are likely experiencing as you build your business. So for me, what this meant when I started building my business is, I was viewing myself for the first time as a business owner, not just of a business that made a little bit of money or that was a hobby. But the owner of a business that would make significant money.
And for me, significant money meant income that could support me and my kids. As I was becoming a single mom, I was stepping into this identity or this role of breadwinner for the first time. I had made money in my life. I had provided for myself, but I hadn’t ever been the provider for my family financially. And this was a huge identity shift for me. And as you are listening and thinking about the identity shift for you, identify what is really different about this new version of you that you’re creating.
And I bring this up because oftentimes when I work with my clients about having a CEO mindset, one of the things that gets in the way of them even inviting this in is that they don’t relate to being a CEO. That seems intimidating, or it seems foreign. It seems like it’s talking about someone else.
So that’s why I wanna pause here first and have you think about who is this CEO that you are becoming? And if you’re in a place where you can close your eyes for a minute and take this in, please do that. I want you to think about that CEO version of you. Who is she when you are that person, that CEO of that business, of that profitable business, what makes you the CEO? What exactly are the traits or characteristics that you have? What do you think when you are that CEO version of you? What do you feel on a regular basis? What do you believe? What do you believe about what’s possible? What do you believe about you when you are her?
And we’ve just kind of tiptoed into this a little bit, and I go in much greater depth with my clients in really identifying where they’re going to fill that gap or that space between where you are and where you want to be. But even just this exercise right now and thinking about it and writing this down, putting it on your vision board will be really powerful as you move through that identity shift. Because it’s kind of like, if you imagine a mountain that you’re climbing and on top of this mountain is this new identity, this new version of you.
And for some of you, you may feel you’re at the bottom of the mountain or you’re partway up the mountain, wherever you are. But the space between where you are and where you’re going is going to be really challenging and rocky. If you’re not clear on that version of you at the top of the mountain – it’s kind of like if you imagine just climbing up a mountain and it’s just difficult and challenging and you’re not really sure where you’re going or wondering if you’ll ever get there – it can be a lot more difficult to stay the course.
Whereas, when you have that end point in mind and you know where you’re going, and you’re aware of the gap there, the space in what needs to shift, and come together for you in your mind and in your emotions as to what’s possible, it allows you to move up that mountain with greater clarity, greater stability, and greater ease. So think about that for you.
Okay, so let’s dive in with the CEO mindset concepts, starting with creating every opportunity. So I love to take these letters, CEO, and extract from them this creativity. As a CEO, it’s not just a boring job where we might think very corporate, very just linear, but I love to bring in this idea of creativity. I think that as an entrepreneur, as a coach, you have that creativity in you innately. And I think as women we have a very unique creativity about us, whether we recognize it or not.
And so, what if part of you stepping into a CEO mindset means embracing this idea of creating every opportunity? Every opportunity for growth and expansion, creating every opportunity for fulfillment in your life and your business. What about creating those opportunities for healing, growth and progress for your clients? Creating every opportunity to make money, the opportunities to expand your connections.
And I wanna be clear that we’re not going to take every opportunity. This isn’t to be translated into, “Oh, I can’t let any opportunity go. I need to do all the things. I need to spread myself thin.” Absolutely not. But as CEO, you are the one to make it happen. You are the one to create every opportunity that will move your business forward. So try that on. See how that feels for you.
Let’s talk about this next concept of how you make decisions. Making decisions as a CEO is one of your most important jobs. In fact, if you Google what is a CEO, the definition will say the highest ranking person at an organization that makes decisions, makes decisions about managerial operations and more. Making decisions is one of your most important jobs, and yet coming right alongside it are some pretty significant challenges, or they feel like significant challenges, right?
Many of you will relate to a lack of knowledge or expertise, really getting in the way of you feeling confident and capable of making decisions. Here you are running a coaching business. Parts of what you do, the coaching, the sales, the marketing, different parts of that will feel more comfortable for you. You’ll have more experience in some than others. You’ll have more knowledge in some than others.
And when you experience seeing these holes in your knowledge or your experience, it can really create some challenges for you in making those decisions. So good to be aware of. And that’s why I focus on in the Foundation’s program, helping clients to fill those gaps. Because if we have holes in the foundation, it makes it challenging, right?
Another thing that can get in the way is fear of trusting yourself and your gut, or your ideas. How many of you experienced this? Like, “Ah, I don’t know. Is this the right decision? Someone else might know better.” And certainly it’s great to take in information. But if we have that intense fear of trusting ourselves, it’s going to get in the way of making clear decisions and right alongside that fear of making mistakes. Like, “Ugh, I don’t wanna mess up. If I mess up, what’s gonna happen to my business? Will I fail? What will I feel? I might experience shame or something else.”
So this is what I wanna offer you regarding decisions. Decisions need to be made. Making decisions efficiently will serve you well. Now for some of you, efficiently will mean making quick decisions. Not for all of you. But for some of you, that is what it will mean. And making decisions quickly and being willing to learn from them and learn from every single one of them, and maybe even be wrong sometimes will serve you well.
This is a process of failing forward, learning from every step along the way. Now, for some of you, quickly will not go hand in hand with efficiently. And in fact, quick decisions may never work for you. And instead it will be beneficial for you to build in a process where you do due diligence with your decisions.
And I think the reason I say ‘a process’ is that those of you that really tend to gravitate toward getting more information and doing what you would consider due diligence, sometimes it can lend itself to spending a lot of time in indecision, and really justifying indecision. And so what I wanna offer to you is if you hear about making decisions quickly, and it’s like your entire system just pushes back against that, that’s okay.
You can be efficient in your decision making as you create a process that works for you, a process that doesn’t allow for excessive self-questioning, that doesn’t allow for fear of failure to have such a loud voice. And a process that allows it to be okay for you to get it wrong sometimes. Coach, whether you make decisions quickly or with due diligence, decide you will make decisions with efficiency. The better you get at making decisions, the more focused your energy can be and the greater ease at which your business can flow forward and unfold.
All right, next up, coach, you are the boss. Do I have any people pleasers out there? Maybe some of you not comfortable in a leadership position. So what I’ll say is I’m comfortable in a leadership position and I also have a lot of people-pleasing tendencies and wanting people to like me and to be happy with me and to make sure that people aren’t bothered by me. And if you relate to some of these thoughts, maybe some of you have your own flavor of what makes it difficult for you to be the boss.
So when you hire someone to do an admin task, for example, do you worry about making sure they’ll think that you are nice or easy to work with, or make sure that they don’t think you’re asking too much or some other version of this? Really think about what is it for you that you notice is really not you being the boss in this energy. Coach, you are the boss. The only question is what kind of boss do you want to be? Are you a boss that’s clear, that’s kind, that’s collaborative or more directive? Are you a boss that’s process oriented?
There are so many ways to be the boss. And I don’t care what kind of boss you are, you get to decide. That’s part of being the boss, right? You get to decide the kind of boss you want to be. But please don’t allow your contractors you’re working with or potentially the ‘upset person of the day’ to be the boss of your business. You are the CEO of your life. You are the CEO of this business. And your clients are counting on you to make powerful decisions that align with your mission of helping your clients. Your future self is counting on you to make powerful decisions that align with your meaningful life vision. Give your clients and your business and yourself the gift of stepping up to be the boss and own that energy.
All right, coach, you ready for this next CEO mindset concept? Define the roles that you play. Let’s think about the roles you play in your business. You’re the coach. You’re the director of marketing. You’re the sales rep. You are the customer service assistant. You’re the administrative assistant. And on and on. All of this would go right. You play so many roles in your business and just like it can be easy to get lost in the roles in your personal life – many of you that are, especially if you are a mom and you have kids and you are playing, housekeeper, you’re playing breadwinner, you are playing, chauffeur all the things. Not to mention the one that everyone comes to for all of their emotional stuff. You play all of these roles, right?
And it’s no different in your business and in your business. It can seem like a lot to keep up with, and it can be challenging to ebb and flow in and out of each role in your business. So one of the foundational CEO mindset hacks is to define the roles you play and be in that space when you’re in that role.
So think about this. When you’re a coach, your number one job before and during each session is to serve that client and meet them where they are. That is the only thing you have to focus on. Now, when you’re in the CEO role, you are there to make decisions for the business as a whole, for the future of the business, and the wellbeing of all the clients.
Now, these roles are not in conflict with each other at all, but they’re distinctly different. The CEO needs the coach to be totally focused on that one client in that session, and the coach needs that CEO to be watching over the big picture of the business, to make sure the coach still has a job. So listen, coach, as you lay the foundation in your business, take the time to differentiate those roles. Be clear about what you’ll outsource and when you’ll outsource it. Make sure that your roles are clear in each task you’re doing. In this moment, doing this task or this thing, this activity in my business, what role am I playing? And then what mindset comes along with that?
As you segment those roles and tasks, you’ll be able to be more clear on the skill gaps that also exist and need to be filled. That’s where you can know where and how to improve. And I’ll just give a small example of this. It’s kind of like if you’re struggling to get paying clients and your brain immediately goes to, “I’m not doing a good job as a coach”, or “I’m not cut out to have a business” or something like that, we’re making a huge assumption. And we don’t really know what the reason is that you don’t have the clients that you want or need.
So by segmenting the roles and also the different pieces of your business, it allows you to actually troubleshoot and be effective. So if there’s a problem in your business, you know where to look and you know which role within you needs to step up.
All right, coach, this leads to our last CEO mindset concept, uplevel uplevel, uplevel. The CEO makes decisions and keeps a high level view of the business. The CEO is the boss overseeing the growth of the business. Coach, as CEO you’ve got to uplevel your ability to be CEO and challenge yourself in each role to uplevel too. This is really why I focus on these different areas in the foundations of your business. In working with my clients, I could definitely just focus on skill mastery, or I could just work on the personal support and that life-business balance, or I could just be a business coach.
But for me and for what I want to offer you in your business, I wanna make sure you have that balanced foundation: coaching skill, the personal support and the business skills and the gaps that exist in all of them. It’s always fascinating to me, I have to say, to think about Olympic athletes that have multiple coaches and CEOs of major corporations having coaches, consultants, mentors that they learn from, right? All of that support. But yet how often as a female business owner, do we give ourself that same thing? Sometimes we do. But sometimes I think it can be hard for us to justify it.
I especially think about, you’ve probably heard me say this before in the work that I do with moms is, you wanna talk about someone that should have a coach. If we have Olympic athletes having multiple coaches because they’re going to break a world record. What about the women that are raising the next generation of adults, of human beings?
I think as women in general, we tend to think we should need less support. And be able to figure more out. And as female entrepreneurs, I think it can be easy to think, well, we aren’t at that level yet where we can justify having a mentor, where we can justify having a high level coach or where we can justify paid support as we build our business coaches. This mentality is not a CEO mindset mentality. This is a, “let’s see if I can make this work first” mentality. This is a, “I have to prove myself before I can have the support that I need.” This is, “I can get by on my own. I need to work to earn the right to think of myself as a CEO.”
Not true. You don’t have to earn the right, you don’t have to see how it goes. Coach, you right now, are the CEO. Congratulate yourself for listening to this podcast. You’re upleveling right now. You are already taking this step of the CEO mindset, concept of upleveling. Ask yourself, coach, what do you need to do to uplevel? Where are the foundations in your business lacking? Do you need to uplevel your personal life boundaries and priorities? Do you need to uplevel your coaching skills? And if so, how do you need to uplevel your leadership? Your sales are one of the millions of other skills.
Now listen, this does not need to overwhelm you. This list of things in all the ways you want to uplevel, they don’t all have to be done today. They shouldn’t be done today. That won’t serve you anyway. However, decide that you will treat yourself like a CEO and give yourself the gift of opportunities to uplevel in exactly the ways you need. You deserve it. Your business deserves it. Your clients deserve it.
Okay, coaches, that’s what I’ve got for you. Lay the foundation in your business, including developing your CEO mindset. These are the fundamentals that I’ve talked about today. I can’t wait to hear from you on the reviews and on Instagram as to how you are going to sharpen your CEO mindset. You’ve got this coach. I’ll talk to you next week.
Thanks for listening to the Masterful Coach Podcast. If you’re ready for complete support as you build your coaching business, check out Molly’s collaborative community, the Masterful Coach Collective. It’s a place where you’ll have access to the best experts in the biz, community support, and guidance as you build your perfect business 90 days at a time. Visit www.mollyclaire.com for details.
Molly Claire is a 7-figure business builder with a blended family of 10. She is dedicated to helping women overcome their own limits, make the money they want, and have the time, freedom, and flexibility to be with the people in their lives that matter most. Especially the little ones.
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