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