The Short Answer is Yes, you get what you pay for.
Whether you are struggling to grow, want to scale your business, or want help with your team or systematization, an experienced business coach can help.
But just how much does a business coach cost? I love business coaching, and this guide will help you understand the HUGE benefits of investing in business coaching!
In my experience, a business coach will cost anywhere from $150 to $1500 for a one-hour session.
Some business growth coaches have a monthly rate plus a percentage of the annual growth that they help create, typically 10 to 25%. For the ABSOLUTE BEST business coaches, you can expect to spend upwards of $100,000 annually (plus percentage of the growth rate).
Given the enormous range of pricing, what factors determine the cost?
The coaching fees will be commensurate with the type of services needed, the executive level or company revenue, the coach’s experience and credentials, the coaching format, and the results you can expect.
Cost of Coaching Depends on What You Need
- Can you save money by using a life coach?
If you are dealing with personal issues that are interfering with your business, you may be able to save money by hiring a less expensive life coach. However, if you need a coach to dissect your business and give you the exact steps to implement a winning plan, hiring a business coach is best.
- Use a novice coach if starting an online business. If you are starting your first Etsy store or a simple online business, a novice coach with lower rates may be able to help you sort through ideas, name the business, set up the website, and launch the business.
- Leadership coaches may be less costly than growth coaches. If you are looking to boost your already-solid leadership or upgrade your culture, many types of leadership or business coaches can introduce you to new leadership habits, helping you create a better culture. This may be less costly than a growth coach, but I have believe many outstanding growth coaches will incorporate leadership and team-building.
- Business growth coaches are a significant investment. If you want to scale your business, there will be a higher investment cost because of the required level of sophistication and expertise. It takes OUTSTANDING skill and years of coaching experience to be able to get BIG RESULTS, and in this process, the coach will identify the blind spots, leaky buckets, and potential growth areas within the business. These complex solutions must be backed by a strong strategy and viable business plan to achieve the best results.
What is the Level of Executive and Company Revenue?
You will be best served by a coach who has worked with leaders at your level and companies of a similar size.
As the stakes get higher for an established business, leaders need a more sophisticated and savvy coach to identify strategies, solve problems, and increase revenue and profits.
A trailblazing entrepreneur moves fast and needs a dedicated coach who knows the business inside and out and can accurately assess the situation. This takes a high level of experience.
The Experience Level and Credentials of the Coach
A business coach’s rates are generally commensurate with experience, credentials, and RESULTS.
Experience can be easily determined. But how do you evaluate credentials? I have seen a few EASY ways to do this.
Business coach certifications signify the completion of training courses. However, certification does not guarantee a coach has entrepreneurial or business experience, nor does it demonstrate proven results.
On the other hand, some uncertified coaches may come from entrepreneurial backgrounds, and I have seen these coaches tremendously help many businesses to have enormous success.
In fact, some of the people we hold up as the best coaches of all time, such as Tony Robbins, are not “certified.” In the coaching world, results, not certifications, are the deciding factor for success!
The most experienced and successful business coaches vet potential clients well and have a wealth of winning strategies and solutions in their repertoire.
Some even GUARANTEE a positive return on your investment!
A high-level coach will cost more, probably much more! You can expect to pay fees of $50,000 to $100,000 or more every year for a top-tier business coach.
While you can expect to pay more, it definitely can be worth the cost if you get a higher return on your investment.
How Much Support Do You Need?
Hourly Versus Monthly Package Coaching Rates
An hourly coaching session can vet a certain coach or resolve a specific issue or decision.
It may be less expensive to buy hourly coaching when you are in EXTREME need, but a monthly package is preferable for long-term results.
This is because you have regularly scheduled sessions, and the coach can get an in-depth knowledge of your business while holding you accountable.
The consistency of monthly coaching, whether for 3, 6, or 24 months, may get you a higher return than the hourly sessions.
Monthly One-On-One Coaching
If you need lots of support, the investment can be significant. In a one-on-one arrangement, your sessions may be in person, online, over the phone, or even text and email. This is the most personalized and comprehensive level of coaching and is, accordingly, more expensive.
I have also seen programs that assign you an “associate” coach and may even rotate coaches.
Generally, it will be more costly if you receive all of your coaching with your chosen coach. You can expect additional costs if you have email, text, or phone support between the calls.
- Highest level of support
- Customized for your success
- Greater accountability
- Useful for scaling and complex business challenges
- Most likely to bring a high ROI
- Highest expense
- Commitment to scheduled calls
Group Coaching Programs:
Although the costs vary, programs may range from $300 to $2,000 per month. The more expensive options generally include a retreat or online study modules.
- These tend to be popular for people who enjoy the camaraderie, feedback from the group, and peer accountability.
- There can be group synergy with a peer support system.
- Often combined with online modules or a retreat/mastermind.
- Generally, these calls use a hot-seat format, so there will be limited individual attention from the coach.
- Some feedback from group members may be well-intentioned but not useful. This is largely due to different levels of experience and knowledge, as well as varying industries.
- Many high-level CEOs and entrepreneurs do not have the time nor interest in comparing notes with a group.
In my experience, online programs are generally the least expensive coaching choice. Many online programs will have a low cost, usually between $200-$500 per month.
Some may be sold as a set of modules, which is generally under $1,000. These may be priced higher if they incorporate complex training or include some personal or group support.
- Good for new business owners trying to get clarity on starting a business, learning a specific skill or strategy, or going through the material at their own pace.
- It may be generic or highly technical.
- I often see limited personalization.
- Successful completion rates can be low.
How to Get the Best Bang for Your Coaching Dollar
Identify Your Needs
I strongly believe you need to look at your budget, goals, and struggles. Which is a better investment: a new coach at $500 per month or an experienced coach for $3,000-$10,000 per month?
Budget: Creative Ways to Pay for a Coach
I have seen people try to get the coach to lower their prices, but this has backfired in the past. You could be seen as a “fee haggler,” and a top coach may not want to work with you. If you don’t have cash for a great coach, get creative.
Offer a trade of services, equity, or a percent of revenue increase, and you may land a world-class business coach!
Questions to Ask a Potential Coach
Before choosing a coach, ask these important questions…
- Who is your ideal client?
- What is the best result that you have achieved for a client . . . and may I call them as a reference?
- What level and type of services can I expect?
- What is the length of the contract, and what happens if things aren’t going well? (Be wary of long-term contracts or no-out clauses) policies.
An experienced coach chooses clients wisely and doesn’t want to work with dissatisfied clients.
Also, if a coaching relationship can’t be remedied to get real results, it may be time to break the relationship. That being said, the best coach can’t help you if you don’t do your work!
How to Avoid Overpaying for a Business Coach
I believe you should closely evaluate coaches whose social media is flooded with photos of flashy cars, luxury jewelry, and exotic vacations. A high-level coach’s results speak for their success.
High-pressure scare tactics also mean that you should find a different coach. A GREAT coach will not scare you into commitment and will be vetting you as much as you vet them.
Is it a “HELL YEAH!” to this Coach?
If the prospective coach has the right credentials and you can afford the required investment, consider whether you really want to work with them on a personal level. Even in a business-coaching relationship, you will be unraveling many personal issues.
Ask yourself these things:
- Do you connect with this coach?
- Will this person be a positive influence on my business and me?
- Does this person inspire me?
- Is it a “HELL YEAH, I want to get coaching from this person!”?
The “HELL YEAH!” is one of the most important aspects of consideration. If you have doubts, interview more coaches until you find the best one for your specific needs.
Above all, remember that a GREAT business coach should be an investment, not an expense!