Let’s Cut the $h&t and Get Real – An Expose On The Online Coaching Industry

by

I’ve had it.  Yep, that’s it, I’ve had it.

Ten months ago I entered the online coaching profession. I came from a history built on online marketing, honed leadership skills and pure passion for seeing transformation and growth in others.  I had NO idea what I was getting myself into.

It’s been a roller-coaster ride, and I had no idea how wild the ride would be.   After watching the online industry for six years, seeing people such as Brendon Burchard, Kendall Summerhawk, Marie Forleo, Danielle LaPorte and many others rise the ranks of online popularity and build lucrative businesses I was finally ready to jump headlong into the game.  This post is not about those people, it’s about exposing a prevalent underlying trend within the online expert coaching industry – specifically within the niche of lifestyle and transformational coaching.

To begin, I find it interesting that this specific niche is dominated mostly by women – anytime anything is dominated by one sex you can be sure there is something there that’s a bit well….off balance.

One particular video series by a transformational coach it what it took for me to dive in.  The video series was very well marketed and spoke directly to the heart of women and their inate need to be valued and wanted – to be captivating.  This desire is such a strong driver for women that positioned correctly causes a headlong fall into love with whatever it will take to feel it.

Interestingly enough, I didn’t hire that coach but instead found myself in another Facebook group where a different woman was making similar claims of lucrative income, designer clothing and travel all whilst serving the world.  I made an almost immediate decision to cash out 14K from my husband’s 401K (God bless that man) as I was coached to do, so that I could fully “invest myself” in this process. As lucrative as it sounds, I did so.  Then, I proceeded over the course of the next several months to rack up another 8K in credit card debt feeding this dream.  I got off relatively cheap…ask around.

In the midst of that process, I found myself in Italy with an “international coach” that laundered money through me in my ignorance. One whom I found later had an active “Most Wanted” record in the States for grand theft.  Yes, it’s that crazy.

Now let me tell you…

…that I consider myself an intelligent, capable business woman. I’ve built a brick and mortar web design business as well as owned other successful businesses in the past. I do not consider myself gullible.  Regardless, the emotional draw to feel captivating, engaging and popular mixed in with a very noble desire to serve others in an transformative way bypassed my sh!t screen.

As I look back on the last year, I will not tell you that I did not find benefit in the choices I made, indeed I learned a ton.  What I learned though, was not what I started out to learn. The expensive lessons I learned were in humility, authenticity and transparency.  Ultimately, the lesson I learned was to be me in the face of all adversity – I found myself and learned that I could be that person online. I learned what was important to me which is not traveling the world and wearing designer clothing.  

What’s important to me is making a difference. 

There is a lie within the height of the online coaching industry and when you’ve been in it long enough you are startled to discover that for some “coaches” it’s not about serving others…it’s about serving self first and then as a trickle down seeing the effect you have on others who pay you with the hope and dream of achieving the same.  Now, please note, I am not saying it is the intention of every one of these individuals to exploit others but don’t bypass the fact that for some exploitation has taken a backseat to their own lies about their work.  They believe they are making a difference through exploitation. In fact, even in writing this post I know some of the feedback I’m going to get is that I have “money blocks” and jealousy keeping me from my true desires and that “some people,” just aren’t ready to accept all that life has to offer them if only they will transcend themselves.  

That’s the level of manipulation this online “coaching” can get to.

This part of the online coaching industry is a bubble that is about to burst. A short study in economics will tell you that it’s impossible for it to continue. It has turned into it’s own circular economy where a trading of dollars goes on between high-level coaches commanding pricing of 10, 20 or 100K a session. I do not lie. The online coaching industry is about to undergo a transformation itself. In fact, it must if it is to survive.  It’s about to get fiercely authentic as my friend and fellow coach Alexia Brewer says.

It IS about to get real.  Everyday more coaches are jumping off the merry-go-round, return to Jr. High clique charade that this industry has become.   Does this mean I think it’s not possible to build a profitable, flexible online business that works exactly the way you do? Absolutely not. I think it’s completely possible to serve others in a way that is fair and authentic and to build a very good income doing so.  But let’s get REAL about the value you are providing to your clients. If they go away from your coaching sessions needing to hire someone else to help them get to the exact place they hired you for (which is happening at an enormous rate right now) then you are NOT doing your job and frankly you should be ashamed of the pricing you’re charging – because it’s a DAMN moral tragedy to your own soul – not to mention to others.

So where am I now?  I have several clients that I serve with online coaching. I have a group of great people in my online Facebook group. I make videos on YouTube and post them to my Facebook profile; videos about what it takes to be authentically quirky and how to build an online brand while being YOU.  I’m building an online community with Dr. Cate Cole at The Quirkypreneur specifically to help others strategically build their online business their way. My profit and numbers are consistently going up. But, I’ll tell you exactly why – my numbers started rising exponentially the minute I learned to stop giving a SH!T about what anyone else thinks, to stay in my lane, to serve the people given to me with excellence and to be REAL at ALL costs.

It was an expensive lesson but totally worth it.  Why?

Because I’m free.

Listen to me, there are fundamental principles that work in business – online and offline – one of which is integrity. Integrity creates a foundation that stands the test of time. Integrity and authenticity must form the base of both your business and any “coach” you choose to do business with. You DO NOT need to hire an online marketing, lifestyle, transformative expert coach to the tune of 10K a session in order to feel captivating and build a profitable, flexible online business that allows you to serve others. You DO need to hire a coach that cares about you, where you’re going, who you are and can help you navigate the path to where you want to go.  Is there incredible value in hiring a coach or consultant for your business. YES.  

Here’s the bottom line-

Don’t buy into the online hype and star-f#$%@ BS that is all too prevalent in the online expert coaching industry right now.

You are captivating because you are you.  Do your thing, Baby.  Be real. Be visible. Hire when it makes sense for your business.  If you like this post and it resonates with you consider sharing. 🙂

That is all.

 All My Love,heart

daunsignature

 

 

 

Have thoughts, comments or otherwise? I’d love to hear them, sound off below or chat me personally here.

53 Comments on Let’s Cut the $h&t and Get Real – An Expose On The Online Coaching Industry

  1. Lori Cunningham
    February 27, 2015 at 2:16 pm (7 years ago)

    Great read! Thank you for being so open and honest. It’s about time that someone was brave enough to share something like this.

    What I don’t like is the backdoor putting others down to make people want to invest in you. That totally irks me!

    After going to an event last year, I went away totally feeling that the coaching industry is inflated. Yes, I feel that we need to charge for what we’re doing and we deserve to make good money, but when does it stop? It needs to level out, and level out soon. I found a coach who loves me, encourages me to do better, who understands my uniqueness and unique situation, and is reasonably priced for my situation.

    Reply
  2. Marguerite
    February 27, 2015 at 2:38 pm (7 years ago)

    Totally agree – I am a coach and I can’t help being disgusted that for some coaching is now more about 6 or 7 figure business than anything else – and how some encourage mostly women, to borrow to register for the very expensive courses they offer.

    Reply
  3. Shelly
    February 27, 2015 at 3:00 pm (7 years ago)

    AMEN AMEN AMEN!!!! I have not spent thousands, hundreds maybe on books that claim to turn my life around. Frankly, I could have written the books myself. Thank goodness that I could see through the smoke and mirrors when reading the books before I spent thousands on seminars or sessions. Shame on me for thinking these books contained a magic formula, but shame on THEM for making millions on their vague gibberish. Thank you for being REAL.

    Reply
    • Daun
      February 28, 2015 at 10:58 am (7 years ago)

      Shelly, Thank you for commenting. I think books have great value and we can learn a lot from them but as a friend of mine recently posted, a quote by H.L. Mencken
      “My guess is that well over eighty per cent of the human race goes through life without ever having a single original thought. That is to say, they never think anything that has not been thought before, and by thousands. A society made up of individuals who were all capable of original thought would probably be unendurable. The pressure of ideas would simply drive it frantic. The normal human society is very little troubled by them. Whenever a new one appears the average man displays signs of dismay and resentment. The only way he can take in such a new idea is by translating it crudely into terms of more familiar ideas. That translation is one of the chief functions of politicians, not to mention journalists. They devote themselves largely to debasing the ideas launched by their betters. This debasement is intellectually reprehensible, but probably necessary to carry on the business of the world.” — H.L. Mencken, H.L. Mencken’s Notebooks (1956)

      Reply
  4. Connie
    February 27, 2015 at 3:10 pm (7 years ago)

    This post is so on point. I love it. Thanx for addressing this information.

    Reply
    • Daun
      February 28, 2015 at 10:54 am (7 years ago)

      Connie, I’m glad you enjoyed it. Thank you for commenting.

      Reply
  5. Connie
    February 27, 2015 at 3:13 pm (7 years ago)

    This post is so on point. I love it. Thank you for sharing this information.

    Reply
  6. Chrissy
    February 27, 2015 at 3:35 pm (7 years ago)

    Hi Daun! Loved this article! So glad we’ve been able to connect and it’s been great watching your business grow online. I totally agree with everything you’ve said in this article – the industry is certainly getting out of hand and it’s amazing the frenzy that can be created and the depths we as women will go through to feel loved, nurtured and profitable. We’re women, we’re emotional. It will be interesting to see how this industry pivots in 2015.

    Reply
    • Daun
      February 28, 2015 at 11:08 am (7 years ago)

      Chrissy, thank you! I’m curious to watch it too albeit with a apprehensive grimmace. Erg.

      Reply
  7. Stephanie Licata
    February 27, 2015 at 4:46 pm (7 years ago)

    I am leaping. My heart is bursting with gratitude for someone telling the TRUTH about what is happening in the coaching industry. Before anyone cared about twitter (or before twitter even existed!), before anyone asked you “how big is your list?”, I was an actual trained, practiced coach with steady clients. Fancy that! As I watched the coaching industry slowly shrink into some scary version of an American Idol audition real where everyone wants to be a star, my heart broke. My heart didn’t break for myself. I never became a coach to have a “4 hour work week.” My heart broke for the thousands, possibly millions of people, vulnerable and open season for these self-proclaimed experts. “Charging what you are worth” is one of the most narcissistic business practices that literally makes NO SENSE. I am priceless. My worth is not determined in what I can convince you to pay for my services. I am not a number on the scale or an invoice. I do CAREER coaching. Some of those people don’t have a job! I vary my pricing based upon NEED and circumstance. I’m really ok with being a mini-preneur and working for an amazing startup that makes me happy. Anything to keep my integrity makes me feel alive and authentic. I wrote a related article on my website about the “new snake oil sales person.”– the online self-proclaimed expert. Branding can only take you so far. Once the real goods get revealed (and they ALWAYS DO!) what you have left is the truth. THANK YOU for being in service of people by writing this. THANK YOU for being willing to be accused of being “negative” while actually being smart! The online coaching industry has led to a childish good/bad positive/negative way of looking at everything. If you aren’t blowing sunshine in someone’s face you are negative. This is so misguided and unintelligent. Using my brain isn’t negative — its smart. Life (and business) is NOT a scrolling positive quote – it’s raw, real, and unpredictable. I’m happy I didn’t give myself over to an industry about to bust and I love coaching on the side and now get to do it in my job. THANKS FOR KEEPING IT REAL!!!

    Reply
  8. Amanda Abella
    February 27, 2015 at 5:06 pm (7 years ago)

    Yes! I could not agree more – and I am coach! This is exactly why I try so hard to be transparent with what’s *actually* going on in my business and the lives of clients. We’re not being of service as coaches if we’re selling a pipe dream which unfortunately, I think is what’s happened in many cases.

    I’m in the personal finance blogging space a lot as a freelance writer and business coach and I feel like the coaching industry is dealing with something the financial industry has dealt with for ages – talking heads selling one size fits all formulas at crazy prices. That being said, it’s changed a lot for the personal finance industry in the last few years as individuals started blogging about what it actually takes to be financially free – struggle and all. That’s helped far more people than what was going on before.

    I feel like if us good coaches (I assume most who’ve landed here are good) do our best to be transparent and honest then we can be of major service and still get paid well – just like personal finance bloggers did in an overinflated industry.

    This article also points out why I try to stay in my own lane when building my business.I unsubscribed and unfollowed every coach selling a pipe dream on Facebook.

    Reply
  9. cate
    February 27, 2015 at 5:19 pm (7 years ago)

    You, my friend, are the REAL DEAL. THE BOMB! honest, raw, vulnerable.

    You are the coach that people should work with to see themselves soar. No pandering, no bottom kissing, just beautiful loving nurturing and honest to goodness reality shoves. Yep, because the world is foundering and people are in limbo. You are the earth wire. Bless you xxx

    Reply
  10. Iola
    February 27, 2015 at 5:54 pm (7 years ago)

    Great article. It’s true, it’s really getting ridiculous and more and more people are becoming aware of what’s authentic and what’s not. It’s sad though because some people categorize all coaches as money hungry and thinking about themselves 🙁 Anyway,Personally I have become wiser in choosing coaches and programs, yes I am a recovering program junkie LOL. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Reply
  11. RavenDelana
    February 27, 2015 at 5:56 pm (7 years ago)

    I can’t even begin to say all the ways I appreciate this. I’ve felt this way since I entered the industry. This chorus of “poor you and your money blocks/jealousy/inability to manifest correctly” is pure manipulation, and mostly coming from others who have been manipulated in that way.

    There’s also this conflation if the concepts of certification and skills training. Some seem to ignore or even outright discourage both with a sort of manipulation that says “Why don’t you think you’re good enough? Why does a piece of paper matter so much to you” When its so much more than that. Intuition and innate talent paired with skill and learned technique can create a truly masterful coach and maybe stop this cycle of people spending thousands without seeing results.

    Reply
    • Daun
      February 28, 2015 at 10:53 am (7 years ago)

      RavenDelana, I agree. There is value in certification (though I will openly admit I do not yet have mine) and if things continue the way they are going coaching will shortly be regulated for better or for worse.

      Reply
  12. imadime
    February 27, 2015 at 6:25 pm (7 years ago)

    i don’t actually understand what the beef is. i’m not a coach and have never hired one, but i’ve participated in programs frequented by that audience, so I pay attention just a little to what’s going on. this piece, while clearly written from an authentic place, doesn’t tell me exactly what some of these people are doing that’s so terrible. lots of ‘they’re charlatans, they’re thieves!” but what are they doing exactly? is it that you don’t like what they’re charging? I’m not trying to be a jerk, i genuinely want to know, and this article was very wink, wink, you know what I mean, so maybe it makes complete sense to the coaching community but it went over my head, I’ll admit.

    Reply
    • Daun
      February 28, 2015 at 10:51 am (7 years ago)

      Imadime, thanks for commenting. I’m not sure I can fully express what it is that is happening to an individual not involved in the industry within a single blog post. But I would like to point out it’s not so much that any “one” person is doing “something.” More that, once you become part of certain circles and areas within the online coaching industry what you find in operation is similar to an pyramid scheme. Now, I’m not here going to argue the morality of pyramid schemes nor to say that obviously those who “buy in” are making a conscious choice to do so rather there are promises made and marketed in a way that is shady. Who ever said that marketing is unshady? No one I know.
      The point of the article is to act as a warning to those who may have already bought into a program or more so a “group” that promotes any resemblence of being able to build a highly-profitable business overnight without work simply through manifestation and psychic woo woo. I’m not discounting the spirit, I’m merely saying that no matter of manifesting will allow you to reach the proportionate levels it has taken for NOT ONLY those who have built their businesses through integrity (like Brendon Burchard and others) but for those who have done it through whatever manipulative and cohercive means necessary to entice their potential clients to buy.
      Perhaps others have more to add that will explain it further.

      Reply
  13. Elizabeth
    February 28, 2015 at 3:09 am (7 years ago)

    Honey, if you didn’t write it, I was about to. The coaching industry needs to have a come to Jesus meeting and get right! For a long time, I didn’t want to label myself a coach because I didn’t want to associate myself with this underbelly. So many are going to be salty after reading this, but it needed to be said.

    Reply
    • Daun
      February 28, 2015 at 10:39 am (7 years ago)

      Absolutely Elizabeth, thanks for the encouragement. Shout it from the mountain tops. P.S. You should still write one.

      Reply
  14. Robin
    February 28, 2015 at 9:01 am (7 years ago)

    So refreshing to see another coach “come out” about what is happening in the industry! I had a recent epiphany– the fact that I was running a coaching business that was built on freedom, crafting my own life, and creating the business I wanted (one that truly serves others and also provides me a life I can feel good about, 100% in integrity) meant that I was also free to CAST OFF ALL OF THE “SHOULDS” of the polished, “perfect”. “follow my system” BS JUNK out there and CARVE MY OWN WAY that feels good and right. Yes, I love learning from others, and appreciate not reinventing the wheel if another expert has already made a great one, but once we’re informed about the formula being used out there all too often, it becomes really easy to see through it. I don’t need to be a 7-digit coach, and the manipulative crap out there is really disgusting to me. But I haven’t given up on the industry. There are a lot of great coaches out there (many on this page!) and I love my work, my clients, and the fun and creativity of growing my business my way. The more of us who speak out, the more we will connect with and draw together like minded others who are committed to good work, good lives, honesty, reality, and integrity. I’m so glad to know you, Daun. Thanks for this great post.

    Reply
    • Daun
      February 28, 2015 at 11:11 am (7 years ago)

      Robin, I completely agree. “once we’re informed about the formula being used out there all too often, it becomes really easy to see through it.” This is the crux of it and people cannot know until they are too far in.
      I love online coaching and there is SO much transformation and beauty that comes out of it that it prompts me to expose it for healing. I could never give it up. <3 Blessing to you on your business.

      Reply
  15. Udoka - girlaftercollege.net
    February 28, 2015 at 12:20 pm (7 years ago)

    Awesome post. I 100% agree with you. And that is so crazy what you experienced! I have been admiring the coaching industry since I graduated high-school. As a teen and young lady, I watched with envy about these women living the life of MY dreams and getting paid handsomely for it. And I truly believed if I had the money, I could get coached by them to do the same thing.

    Well, I never had enough money to go for it, but I joined other programs. Two in particular. Quite expensive to me (nothing compared to these 10k$$+ programs — I saw one the other day that was $60,000… !!!!!). They changed my life, but I saw that there was absolutely
    NO POINT
    in me paying for any more programs or coaching until I was able to master everything I learned in the two courses I paid for. So I am sitting on them, working on them, realizing how HARD it is to master just these basic aspects and also watching other people continue to spend money on courses and coaching without making progress. In fact, I, a young woman with no money who bought 2 courses (I won a scholarship to one of them, so I paid for just 1 course), am making more progress than women who are getting all this “coaching”.

    It blew my mind.

    I started to understand — one must first create the habit of taking action and learning how to self-assess themselves before they can benefit from “high level” coaching. If you can’t do that, get a coach you can afford who will help coddle and push you to the point you need to get to!

    Reply
  16. Orisade
    February 28, 2015 at 12:57 pm (7 years ago)

    Thank you for writing this. As a coach new to the industry, I’ve been watching this trend gain traction. Coaching people to be their best selves and live their best lives, somehow morphed into B to B coaching. I suspect it’s an easier value proposition. Promising that your coaching will help a person make $x, makes it easier to charge higher fees.

    Reply
    • Daun
      March 1, 2015 at 8:13 pm (7 years ago)

      Business coaching does help you command higher fees because people are motivated to pay for things based on their felt pain. If something is marketed to help gain them more money, more time, better health, better relationships it will sell over life coaching IF the life coaching is not niched and well positioned. Life coaching helps you acheive all these things but the bottom line is people will only pay for something that resolves their known need.

      Reply
  17. Maggie Patterson
    February 28, 2015 at 2:55 pm (7 years ago)

    Daun – Thank you for saying this. Thank you for being honest and standing up for what’s the god honest truth about the BS that goes on in this industry. More integrity and not fake authenticity is SO needed. And the part about your money blocks and jealousy is pure gold – b/c I’ve been accused of that many times. 🙂

    Reply
    • Daun
      March 1, 2015 at 7:42 pm (7 years ago)

      Maggie, I’m glad you could relate to the post — we’ll sort of. 😉 (I’m not glad you’ve had the opportunity to relate to being told you were jealous and had money blocks.)

      Reply
  18. Andrea Owen
    March 1, 2015 at 4:33 am (7 years ago)

    Great post, sister! I’ve been coaching since 2007 and even wrote about this very topic in 2012. And sadly, it’s continued to get WAY worse more so in the last 3 Years or so.

    I do think the bubble will burst but I think it will take several more years.

    Also, what’s interesting is that if you use google’s tools, and compare how many people are searching “how to become a life coach” vs “find a life coach” guess which one has and incredibly higher search rate? That’s very telling about where the industry is going. I’m with you though, I agreed that it is VERY possible to build a profitable life coaching business (I’ve done it!) but the cannibalization of the industry will eventually catch up to us.

    Reply
    • Kate
      March 11, 2015 at 2:47 pm (7 years ago)

      To be fair, no one would search for “looking for a life coach” or “need a life coach”. People search for the solutions they want “how to lose more weight” or “how to attract the right partner” or “how to get more clients.”

      Reply
  19. Maureen
    March 1, 2015 at 5:23 am (7 years ago)

    i love this post. You nailed it! I wrote something very similar a few months back but I must say you articulated it so beautifully. Grateful I found you and am not the only one with thus experience.

    Reply
  20. Andrrea Hess
    March 1, 2015 at 6:57 am (7 years ago)

    Great article! I’m someone who actually DID invest $100K with a coach. And I do have to say … I tripled my income, from $250K to $750K in one year. BUT … even though the money came, I hated my life. I hated my business model. I didn’t have enough time for myself, and I certainly didn’t feel free. However, my mindset WAS transformed and I did step out of my comfort zone in a massive way that continues to serve me. So … a mixed bag for sure, but I can’t say I didn’t benefit.

    I was actually close to quitting a few times. Instead, I walked away form the high-ticket model I’d been taught because I just couldn’t stomach it. Newbie entrepreneurs shouldn’t invest huge amounts in coaching – they just won’t get an ROI. I had to learn this the very hard and heartbreaking way, because my coach certainly was telling me differently!

    I ended up doing seven figures in 2014 … with most of my sales beings UNDER $1K, a single $3K offer, and a handful of very carefully chosen private clients who I knew were in a position to get an ROI from working with me. I’m all for making money, and helping people make money. But we can do it charging APPROPRIATELY, without putting our clients into tremendous financial stress.

    I don’t think there’s too many coaches truly out there, trying to take advantage. I think they truly BELIEVE In the “invest in yourself in a big way” philosophy because they HAVE TO believe in it. It’s like a whole section of the industry is brainwashed. Coaches are coaching coaches who are coaching coaches … it’s a crazy pyramid scheme.

    There’s definitely a place for high-ticket investing. I don’t think I’d hire a coach who charges LESS than $50K a year … simply because a smaller investment wouldn’t push me. But I’ve seen too many entrepreneurs get themselves into serious financial trouble by pushing themselves into investments they have no business making.

    Reply
    • Daun
      March 1, 2015 at 6:05 pm (7 years ago)

      Such a great comment Andrea, thank you for taking the time to post it. I definately see that I wouldn’t be where I am without having been pushed either – the lessons I learned were good for me and I agree that it can be done by charging APPROPRIATELY, without putting our clients into tremendous financial stress.

      Reply
    • Makenna Johnston
      March 1, 2015 at 7:01 pm (7 years ago)

      Andrrea, I LOVE this comment. And Daun, I’m so with you on this post. It is so spot on.

      I’m a huge believer in the notion of investing, but it doesn’t have to incur ridiculous amounts of debt. I feel like that is just insanity. And my whole business model is based on what you said Andrrea. We can get coached into making a crapton of money, but that doesn’t mean it is ACTUALLY what we want. I see some of these coaches manipulating people into thinking they want to live that ‘lifestyle’, but often times people just don’t want to.

      Reply
      • Kate
        March 11, 2015 at 2:50 pm (7 years ago)

        But when people are charging – they are charging for the value of their solution. They are not holding a gun to someone’s head and saying go into debt for it. If I’m willing to pay a higher fee for a solution that should be my right and just because it’s higher priced doesn’t mean it’s any better or worse – it just means that I feel that I would be getting the value I seek. It is on me to both research what I am buying and do the work for the program I select.

        If someone else feels like they want to pay $20,000/mo to work with a coach, who am I to say that’s too much? If they have the money or feel comfortable with what they are getting for what they are spending, is that really on anyone to judge as “wrong”?

        Reply
        • Marissa
          September 25, 2016 at 8:29 pm (6 years ago)

          I think that’s a great point Kate. One can’t assume that just because someone charges a high fee that they must automatically be a bullshit artist that is going to leave people emotionally and financially distressed. If they have proven to get results with their methods and have a very specific niche, I don’t see what the issue is. A lot of people are turned off by high prices because the niche that people charge in is so broad that they stick out like a sore thumb. If someone is a generic life coach who offers the typical promises of helping people become happier and less stressed and they are charging $900 per session while the average coach is charging $115 per session for that same issue, I can understand why people would get upset. If someone is a life coach for male executives who are over 50 pounds overweight and they charge $900 per session, it shouldn’t be as offensive because who else solves that specific issue? No one or barely anyone. Also, it must be acknowledged that if people don’t have the money, they will usually be offended by any charge that is out of their price range. That is why it is so important to cater to people who can actually afford you. It reminds me of the business marketing guru Jay Abraham who charges $50,000 per day for his time. Of course to me now that price practically sends me into shock, but if I was running a company that was bringing in $50 million+ worth of revenue, it wouldn’t be as intimidating.

          Reply
        • Debbie
          February 16, 2018 at 6:30 pm (4 years ago)

          Kate’s spot on. Every person, women in particular here in this topic, need to grow up and quit groaning about people spending money when or if they ‘shouldn’t’ be. Who are we to judge what people do with their own money? [Again, fraud is a totally separate subject.] Shame on them for spending money they don’t have? Isn’t that their business? Not ours. What, because they were tempted too much? Turn your computer off then. Do we blame car salesmen for selling expensive cars to people who we feel ‘can’t afford that car he/she just bought’…or bought too much house for themselves? These are consenting, supposedly savvy, adults.

          Reply
  21. Susan
    March 1, 2015 at 8:17 am (7 years ago)

    This hits the spot! Had to share with all my “certified” Coaching friends!

    Reply
  22. Lorena
    March 1, 2015 at 9:09 am (7 years ago)

    As a Mindset and Money Making mentor, I totally agree with what you are saying. A lot of my clients come to me because they are $50,000 in debt because they invested in a “high end mastermind” with 100 (or more) other people, they got lost in the crowd and never made a penny, so they decided to invest on another person that promised them the shiny “six-figure” dream and so on.

    I keep telling my friends that we need to start the Humane Society of Coaching! Asking for people to borrow money or cash in their 401K is not right. As coaches, we are supposed to empower people to work with us, not scare them or manipulate them.

    Thank you for writing this and for sharing it! I am sure that articles like this one will start the “humane” shift in our industry.

    Reply
    • Patti Pokorchak
      March 20, 2015 at 8:15 am (7 years ago)

      Thanks Lorena, you confirmed my response to this money block BS!

      AND never invest more than you can afford, there is NO one out there with a magic wand! Plod your way to profits is not glamorous……. but in my 23 years as a serial entrepreneur, from technology to hobby farm….. it takes years to be that over night success!

      Reply
  23. Patrice
    March 7, 2015 at 6:39 pm (7 years ago)

    Daun – WOW! Good for you for speaking your mind. I was wondering about your journey and now I know the rest of the story…excellent demonstration of authenticity and reality about the online world. I am thrilled for you to be finding yourself and your path. To God be the Glory for the fabulous, quirky, powerful women he made you to be!! By the way, your “Find Your Spark” test is a very good opt-in offer. I loved every bit of the experience. Such powerful insight to have for everyone. Keep up the good work my friend I found on Twitter who lives a few miles away…social media rocks!

    Reply
    • Daun
      March 7, 2015 at 6:57 pm (7 years ago)

      LOL! Indeed Patrice. Thank you so much for your encouragement. <3

      Reply
  24. Evie
    March 11, 2015 at 12:36 pm (7 years ago)

    Thank you for writing this post. I just wrote a similar post yesterday about the explosion of “experts” and how it’s all BS. Thank you for sharing your story and speaking your truth. I am not even sure how I came across this post. Synchronicity I’m sure because I thought I was one of the few who actually saw this is a major issue. I too have heard the “hater” and “blocks” and all those other arguments. My response was no- I just have integrity. It’s unconscionable (to me) to be unproven in your work and charging thousands of dollars off GP. This whole charge what you are worth (instead of the value of what you bring to the table) is an abuse of spiritual principle and practice. It’s bordering on criminal at this point. People are so desperate for connection, they will pay anything for what they are able to tap into for free (themselves). Here’s what I blogged about- hope it’s ok to share here: https://yourmysticgenius.wordpress.com/2015/03/10/mythofexpert/

    Thanks!

    Reply
  25. Kate
    March 11, 2015 at 2:42 pm (7 years ago)

    This is so off the mark: “If they go away from your coaching sessions needing to hire someone else to help them get to the exact place they hired you for (which is happening at an enormous rate right now) then you are NOT doing your job”

    As a coach, you can only lead your clients to the solutions – you can’t make them take action. So many people live in a world of constant consumption – they just want to consume consume consume and never actually do anything. They hope that reading will just magically make it happen. No matter how much you coach these people around production vs. consumption or taking action, etc. some just will not take any action or, worse, take inconsistent action, etc. A good coach allows this burden to fall to the clients, letting them know they are ultimately responsible for their successes (and failures). If they chooose not to do all that is required, the outcome must be something for which they take responsibility.

    You can be the best coach in the world but if you do not have an open and willing client what you say or do just won’t work and if they are inclined to be in consumption forever mode they will just keep hiring someone else or keep buying that next recording.

    Reply
    • Daun
      March 11, 2015 at 4:36 pm (7 years ago)

      Thank you for taking the time to comment Kate, I appreciate you being willing to share an opposing viewpoint. I would like to request that you provide your website address and/or business name so that the readers have opportunity to view your perspective fully.

      Reply
  26. Vince Fowler
    March 18, 2015 at 7:27 pm (7 years ago)

    Hi Daun… I’m on the same page as Kate… You coach. You’re client executes… or they don’t. You – the coach – have not control on what your client does or doesn’t do.

    As for coaching, online or offline (face to face), there are some great coaches out there serving others. There are also snake oil coaches that are simply serving themselves. I’m not sure there is an industry out there where both selfless and self serving behaviours exist. I see it in teaching, consulting, policing, military, business, etc.

    I coach. Online and face to face. The clients that get the results and the ones who look at coaching as an investment and EXECUTE… they implement their knew knowledge and execute. Just as Kate said, it’s all on them.

    Now, that said, there’s a certain responsibility on the part of the coach… they actually have to care about their client and recognize when the client is not executing, then call them out on their resistant behaviour.

    Coaching can be a very lucrative business… but hopefully it isn’t the reason why someone is getting into coaching. Second, for anyone hiring a coach… Google them. Google them again. Find their current and past clients and get some feedback.

    At the end of the day, lessons were learned. Don’t lose the lesson… and hopefully the pain, plus a little time, will result in a little humour. Lastly, there are some amazing coaches out there, men and women… they’re coaching for all the right reasons and will continue to make a difference in the world – you will too. 🙂

    Reply
  27. Angelica
    March 19, 2015 at 2:25 pm (7 years ago)

    Gosh, have I had some really big issues with this! A coach I respected recommended her tribe (including me) that if we felt that her mega cool but also mega expencive VIP program resonated with us, we should do anything INCLUDING BORROWING MONEY to get there. I lost so much of my respect for her right then. And yet, I want to become a coach myself. But I don’t want to get burned by expensive sandcastles. Do you have any tips for how to find affordable and content-rich programs?

    Reply
  28. Patti Pokorchak
    March 20, 2015 at 8:13 am (7 years ago)

    In my opinion it’s like MLM – multi-level-marketing.(my brother actually called it a cluster f**k). Coaches selling to coaches selling to coach and selling them a bunch of counterfeit goods. I believe that only around 5% of their clients actually make it to the 6 figure income level.

    I”m with you Daun, it’s about having the passion to pass on my experience and skills to others in order for them to grow their business. I’ll make money when enough of my clients make tons of money too. It’s never about the money, it’s about helping others first, then the money will come!

    And I teach sales skills but I have to be the most soft seller out there! I know I”m losing business to other more aggressive coaches IN THE SHORT TERM, but I pick up their disappointed clients after they’re had their chance and not improved their business enough to continue that relationship.

    I’m new to coaching as well and offer a highly personalized service that is proving very effective – isn’t that what this is all about? Serving others!

    F**K that money block issue! Convenient excuse when their coaching hasn’t worked! Too easy to blame the client and not yourself.

    Reply
  29. Kate Love
    April 3, 2015 at 5:10 pm (7 years ago)

    I wholeheartedly agree!

    I have been studying and preparing to coach professionally for years. The hype seems to grow more by the month and it turns my stomach the way some of the ‘celebrity’ coaches seem to have lost all sense of ethics, just turns my stomach.

    I’ll accept paying clients when I am ready – not because a coach (re: guru) tells me I am. For me, it’s not time. I’m busy healing and recovering from an assault 18 months and am fully aware I am not ready to hold that kind of space for someone in my current state. I’ve had a coach tell me otherwise – bullshit. I would be cheating either my clients or myself – heck, maybe both of us.

    I’ll continue being me, writing articles, focusing on #SelfCareSundays, and my healing & recovery. Maybe when I’m ready the market will have crashed and the mighty scams will be over… I hope so!

    Thanks for writing this piece!

    Reply
  30. Leesa
    July 13, 2015 at 2:56 pm (7 years ago)

    THANK YOU Daun for sharing EXACTLY what needs to be said. As an experienced business woman I also fell into this trap and realised soon enough how much integrity was lacking. I really appreciate you sharing this!

    Reply
  31. Rachael Hampton
    July 15, 2015 at 4:06 am (7 years ago)

    Finally, when I read your article!
    I had this experience last year. When I was looking for a coach. I found one base out of NYC and her price was over what I made per month. When I express my concerns over the prices she turn it around on me like I have money issues.
    I made a video about this on YouTube here : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYWl_Z3M97g

    After this video was posted. I got a private email from a coach. To summit it up told me that I had a money block.
    Since then I have become weary of Coach sorry to say and I started my own self-coaching journey.

    Thank you for this article.

    Reply
  32. IitJee
    September 3, 2015 at 10:54 am (7 years ago)

    Ten months past I entered the net employment profession. I came from a history engineered on on-line selling, honed leadership skills and pure passion for seeing transformation and growth in others. I had NO plan what i used to be obtaining myself into.

    Reply
  33. Debbie
    February 16, 2018 at 6:00 pm (4 years ago)

    Since when are we responsible for how other people choose to spend their money? It’s my responsibility to know what I’ve paid for and what I’m supposed to get out of it. It’s one thing if a coach takes money and then never shows up. But that’s not what this article really addresses. I signed up with a coach but I made sure I got a ‘product’ at the end of my deal, which is to have a massive checklist for back-end tech/automation/ads etc. handled for my site. The tech stuff I’ve been struggling with for some time now. Any ‘transformational’ coaching layers on top of that. I also spent $3800 (a stretch for me…I can’t imagine paying $14K + another 8K) and it’s for 12-16 weeks, talking to my coach at least 2x a week (calls last 1-2 hours). It’s not a bunch of videos and worksheets….and an ‘event’ I get to pay to get to myself. I’ll add that it’s been one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself and gotten great value. Women should be smart enough and mature enough to know what the heck they’re paying for in the first place. And then make damn sure every step of the way they’re getting it. If they’re not getting it,
    then they need to take some initiative, communicate, file complaints with the company, threaten to take it public if it’s not remedied, or potentially file suit if it’s fraudulent behavior. Personally, I think coaching is a great way to make money and have a flexible biz, especially crucial for women. Shop smart. Know what you really want and what you’re actually paying for…then make sure your coach follows through on the product. If the product is ‘Being Captivating’ and it’s worth over $20K to you to be ‘Captivating’ then only you (and possibly your generous husband) know if your coach delivered or not. [BTW, did you mean ‘lucrative’ or ‘ludicrous’ in that context above?].

    Reply
  34. Alexis Buhrman
    February 13, 2019 at 9:07 am (3 years ago)

    Found this post doing a google search and so glad I did. I’ve followed so many coaches with programs to grow your practice and once I actually started looking at reviews, I was glad I didn’t sign up. I followed Carolin Soldo and Kendell SummerHawk because they have great content, but when I was interested in their programs, the reviews told a totally different story. I think for me, it’s been eye-opening and a little disappointing to see people who show up as coaches publicly but behave the opposite in private. I’ve also noticed that there is a lot of shaming when clients don’t get certain results quickly. I see coaches blaming clients for having a poor mindset, instead of looking at individuals and their unique situations and understanding that some people need more time to reach their goals. Blaming mindset not only makes the client wrong, but lets these coaches get away with drawing people in, but not truly supporting them. End of the day, it always stings to follow a coach that you look up to only to learn they’re a better salesperson than a coach. Thanks for the share!

    Reply
  35. Sandra
    July 25, 2019 at 10:24 am (3 years ago)

    This is 4 years after this initial post was created, and the problem still exists. Over the last several years I have “turned over” 3 clients who after coaching with me for many many years decided to start working with a specialty coach who not only promised to take all their pain away, but also charged significantly higher rates then they were paying with me (up to 10x more in one case).

    [In the Minneapolis market, my coaching fees are considered mid-tier. So I know that while I could charge more, I know that I’m also not 10x undercharging.]

    My challenge is knowing what to say to them when they ask me what I think——–Coaching isn’t about giving advice, but after coaching with me for so many years, and knowing that I am in the industry, it is a fair question.

    I feel a little trapped because if I say “buyer beware” I come off as jealous or defensive. At the same time, it is one of our coaching principles to “help the client see things that they can’t see for themselves.”

    In each case, I didn’t give an opinion, but rather reminded them that transformation is magnetic. As they transform and open themselves up to transformation, they will attract many people into their lives (some will be givers and some will be takers and some will be disguised as one but really be the other) and that they need to practice discernment and boundary setting to help guide them.

    [I should also add that the central theme between all three of these “women” is that they all have issues around self-worth, purpose and have strong needs for validation——–the perfect combo for greedy prey].

    Thanks for writing this——–one of my current clients just came back from A-Fest (anyone know about that) and of-course while there, met a woman who promised she could heal her childhood trauma in 6 months (12 sessions) for an outrageous amount of money (did I mention this coach was a HS drop-out——no college, only online coach training)——-my client, who had to borrow the money from her wedding account, signed up! Her first homework assignment? To read a book titled, “Money Loves Me”————-Hummm, not sure I see the connection between healing from sexual trauma and money. It all just feels so shady and I am disgusted to even been seen in the same profession.

    I appreciate reading everyone’s posts as this is exactly the comradery that I needed. I’m not opposed to charging high rates, in fact I have corporate clients that pay handsomely, but I am opposed to taking advantage of people. For awhile I thought that I was crazy.

    Reply

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