4 Questions to Help You Get Coaching Clients

life coaching packages

After speaking at a conference, I recently met a coach/consultant from California.  He was obviously a talented guy with a lot to offer, but after chatting for a few minutes he shared something that I hear often.  He said,

“I know I can help people.  I do it all the time.  I just have a problem with confidence when it comes to selling potential clients on working with me.  I should have all sorts of swagger when it comes to charging for my time… but I just have a tough time with it.”

Can you identify?  Do you wrestle with the same feeling?  I sure did!  It’s understandable.  It’s a really common experience.  If this is something you’re dealing with… I want to give you a simple but powerful strategy that I offered to this new coach.  (By the way… he used it to gain a new client the next day!).

I simply asked him 4 questions.  Here they are in order:


What’s your current “package?”

When I asked this… I stumped him at first.  But then I asked a follow-up question.  “How are you currently selling your coaching?”

He explained his most common approach was to work with a client month-to-month.  They would invest in a month of coaching with him and that would get them 4 50-minute coaching packages.  He had a flat price for the month and offered some price breaks for people who invested in two or three months up front.  He said that he thought this was a pretty simple and clear approach, but it seemed to cause people to be surprised by his $200/hour rate.

I understood.

His current “package” was based on the “trading time for money” model, which is common for lawyers, counselors and even doctors.  It’s that… “If I sit and talk with you for an hour… you’re going to charge me X.”  It’s a cold-hard transaction… clear and simple.

I explained that this model was common… but not effective for coaches.

So… I asked my next question.


What do you want your clients to “experience?”

Again… I stumped him at first with this next question.  So I explained myself a bit.

What do you want your coaching client to experience as the result of working with you?  For example, do you want them to experience…

  • a major breakthrough in their career?
  • a feeling of finally moving from “just surviving” to thriving?
  • the satisfaction of overcoming a conflict in a key relationship?
  • the thrill of achieving their dream job?

He explained that he loved to help people who feel lost to experience a sense of true clarity.  Then he helped them build a plan to get where they wanted to go.  As he started to talk about this “experience” for his clients… he came up with story after story of people he’d helped.  He lit up as he shared some of his favorite success stories.  He smiled.  In fact, he beamed with confidence.  He had true swagger as he bragged… not about himself but instead… he bragged on his clients and their achievements.  (It was fun to see him be so proud of his people!)

We’d hit a gold… so I asked him my next question.


“How long does that ‘experience’ usually take?”

He gave me a questioning glance again… but then the light bulb went off over his head.  He started to pick up on exactly where I was taking him.  In fact, I didn’t need to ask him a follow-up question this time.

After thinking for a minute, he said, “I can almost always help someone get that clarity, build a plan and then start walking out that plan in 3 months… or 12 coaching sessions.”

I said, “Awesome.  There’s your ‘package.'”

I continued, “Don’t sell someone on buying 4 hours of time with you.  Invite them into the ‘experience of finally getting clarity, building a plan and achieving more of the life they were created to live.’  Don’t sell them on working with you month-to-month.  Offer them your “Clarity Package.”  It’s three months of working together (12 sessions) to help them finally get clear, get to work and achieve break through!  That way, they’re not just paying you for your time… they are investing in a life-changing experience!”

With a confident and excited smile… he responded with a… “Oh, I like that.”

I continued, “So… you’re not selling your time… you’re offering them an “experience” through your coaching package.  That totally changes the conversation.  And… since you know the value you can bring in 3 months of working together… you can have that swagger you’re missing now.”

He said, “You know it.”

I asked my final question:


“What’s your coaching package now?”

He said, “Well… now, I’m not going to just sell my coaching month-to-month.  I’m going to offer the ‘Laser-Focus Package.’  It’s going to be 3 months of coaching.  Plus, I already have a bunch of things I can do with them if I know we’ve got a full 3 months together!  I’m loving this!”

And with an inspired grin on his face, he said, “Yeah… I’m feeling the swagger.  Thanks!”

Fun stuff.

Also, as I mentioned earlier… he had a call with a potential client the next day and they invested in his brand new package.  In fact, he relayed that they didn’t push back on the price at all… and that they were really excited to get started!

How about you?

How could you apply these questions to your own coaching practice?  What if you were to think about what you want your coaching clients to experience as the result of working with you?  What if you were to throw away the model of just charging month-to-month for your time… and instead invited your potential clients to invest in that ‘experience?’  What might that do with your confidence?  How might that change the conversation with potential coaching clients?

Try it out.  Ask yourself the questions.  Just see where they take you!

Keep bringing your awesome, the world needs YOU!


PS – If you’re interested in becoming a coach but you haven’t found the right training yet… join us for next for our LIVE Coach Mindset – Elite Life Coach Training and Certification in April.  We’d love to have you with us as we teach you the powerful coaching strategies and proven business concepts that you need to have a successful and sustainable coaching practice!  Click here to find out more.


Do you make your coaching clients pay up front?

Here’s another business question from a new Life Coach.

Coach’s Q&A:Question and answers - life coach certification

“Mitch I have a question about payment. 

When you charge a client your coaching fee, do you make them pay the full fee right away? 

Is it all up front?”



The short answer is: YES.

Yes I do.

I have my coaching clients pay the full fee… up front.

Now that may or may not sound selfish but it’s not for me.

Having them pay up front is FOR THEM.

What do I mean?

Well… I often tell my coaching clients that having them pay up front helps them.

Sure… I’ll be the first one to admit that having them pay helps me too.  Their payment to me helps to put food on my table and a roof over my head.  (Did I mention that we have two teenage boys who eat A LOT?!?)  So I certainly appreciate the payment.

Also, it’s valid to say that I love coaching… I’m betting you do too.  But we all need to remember that even though this is a passion… this is also a business.

So having them pay for the coaching services is part of the process.

BUT… it’s not the most important part.

The most important part of the coaching fee is your coaching client having skin in the game.

It’s them committing to the process.  And it’s not that they are committing to me.  It’s that by writing that check out or by processing that payment… they are committing to themselves that they are 100% in!

So much so that I’ll tell people that I don’t do monthly payments for coaching to protect them!

Here’s why.

As I partner with my clients I let them know that we’re going to work hard.

We’re going to stretch.

We’ll push out of the comfort zone and achieve new levels!

We’ll break old habits and establish new ones.

It won’t be easy but it will be sooooo worth it.

The reason I don’t do installments is that the hardest part of the journey is usually smack dab in the middle of our process!

For example… in the middle of a 3-month coaching package… they’ll be stretching themselves and pushing their own limits.

So if they get an invoice for a monthly payment right in the midst of all that work and stretching… they might be REALLY tempted to quit.  But since they’re fully invested… they lean in and push through!  They get it done!

In fact, recently… as I was wrapping up with a coaching client… she thanked me for making her pay up front.  It was almost ironic because she’d initially pushed back and asked for an option where she could pay monthly, but when I explained my reasons for not offering that… she went ahead and paid.

In our final coaching session together she said…

“Thanks for making me pay up front.  I know that I would have bailed at week 5 when I felt completely out of my comfort zone.  There was a part of me that just wanted to run back to familiar and give up.  But I kept reminding myself that I’d paid and that made me stick it out.  I’m so glad I did!  So yes.  Thanks again for making me pay up front.”

That’s why I charge people up front.

It’s more for them than it is for me.

I hope that helps!

Keep dreaming big and helping others to do the same,




Myth 12

As you know… we’re going after myths that exist around the process of getting your life coach certification.

Today’s myth might surprise you.

Bookstand with large textbook

Bookstand with large textbook (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s MYTH 12: You can be told how to coach.

Weird… right?

You might be thinking… “How could this be a myth?  Isn’t a Life Coach Certification simply a life coach training with an exam at the end?”

Well… in some ways that’s true.

But the key difference is… you can’t simply be told how to coach.

You have to own it. 

You have to take the ideas within a life coach training program… and make them your own.

Sure… you can learn life coaching strategies and techniques.  There’s no doubt.  However… unless you take the next step and “own” them… those theories and concepts just become useless baggage.

Let me give you an example.  I recently met with a woman who was going through a different life coach certification program.  It had been intense for her.  Multiple live sessions.  Time away.  Loads of theory and coaching history.  Lots of strategy and processes.  In fact, it was obvious that this particular program put a high value on “information.”

Now, information can be good.  But too much… can frankly get in the way.

Case in point… when we started to talk about prospective life coaching clients for her… I started to ask her about how she wanted to help people.  She threw out some general ideas and I said, “Great.  I like that.  Now, let’s say one of these people agreed to a complimentary session with you.  What would be the first two to three questions you’d want to ask them?”

Dead stare.

She had nothing.  Her brain was spinning.  She was processing all of that information.  She was sorting through all that training.  But she was stuck.  She was stumbling to come up with her lead questions.

She hadn’t owned it.

All of that training was still data someone had presented.  But she hadn’t found a way to make it her own.  She hadn’t found the way she wanted to use it.

I will even say that she had practiced.  But she had practiced in role play scenarios… tightly linked to the information as it was being presented.  So when I started throwing out real-world scenarios… that weren’t linked to made up role plays… she was stuck.

Now… I will tell you that I got frustrated for her.  (Not at her… for her.)

I said… “They didn’t help you beat your own “Intellectual Immune System.”

She looked at me with a puzzled face and said, “My Intellectual… what?”

I then explained my theory about how our intellect has a similar immune system to our body’s.  Not… medically… but metaphorically.  Basically, the idea is that intellect tends to reject things that come from outside us (even good ideas) over time… just like our body rejects much needed organ transplants… because they come from outside us.

Here’s a video from a TEDx event where I spoke in depth on the concept of the Intellectual Immune System:

So… again… here’s the key to overcoming this myth.

You can’t be “told” how to coach.  Yes… you can be given useful information and strategies.  (We do that in our training.)  Yes… you can be given proven tools and processes.  (We do that too.)

But… you can’t stop there.  You can’t stop at information.  You have to go a step further and ask yourself questions like…

  • How am I going to own this concept?
  • How could I adapt this strategy to fit my AVATAR (my ideal life coaching client)?
  • Where could I employ this strategy to help my AVATAR to achieve what they want to achieve?

Keep asking yourself those questions.  Keep digging deeper.  Keep owning it.

And as you do… you will start to beat your own Intellectual Immune System and the “information” will become your own.  The techniques will become second nature.  They will simply start to flow from you.  Because… they are yours.

So beat this myth.  Don’t just be “told” what to do.  Own the solutions and beat your Intellectual Immune System!

As you do… you will set your own Life Coaching Clients to achieve the things they want to achieve!

Keep dreaming big and helping others to do the same,

Mitch Matthews

PS – Interested in finding out with the number 1 life coach certification myth is?  Click here to find out!  I think you may be surprised!



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