How much does business coaching cost?
How long does it take to implement Scaling Up and how much do business coaches charge?
Are you exploring hiring a business coach and curious to know more about the investment of time and money?
If so, this piece by Dominic Monkhouse will explain how he thinks about the time investment and cost to hire business coaches in the UK or internationally. It is not the first question he gets typically asked though, that’s usually “can you help me?” or even “What does a business coach do?” However, eventually, before someone becomes a client, they ask, “How much time does it take to implement the Scaling Up tools and techniques?” and “What does a Scaling Up business coach cost?” His answer depends on five key factors:
- How inherently disciplined are the CEO and the senior team? No company OUTPERFORMS its leadership team.
- Do you have a PLAN? Are you going to self implement or hire an experienced business coach?
- Are you DRIVEN to do what it takes? How quickly do you need to reach your goals?
- Do you have previous EXPERIENCE of implementing other methodologies across the business?
- Have you had previous experience working with a BUSINESS COACH or attending a peer board such as Vistage?
You might think that a small business or start-up would be able to implement Scaling Up more quickly than a larger firm. However, they often do not have the spare capacity or the leadership depth to implement the system and find themselves trapped in a cash execution cycle that is hard to break free from. Larger, well-established firms have the leadership team and resources to create a strategic plan and execute it with the necessary vigour.
There is a broad range of possible costs for organisations seeking to implement the Scaling Up tools. If the business outcome they are seeking is an increase of £2million or more in gross profit then they should think about spending 10% of that upside or up to £200,000 per year over several years.
The £65,000 to £125,000 annual investment
After someone has attended one of our coaching sessions, public or private, the next step is often a coaching engagement. An initial two-day or three-day off-site workshop for the executive team followed by a further one or two days per quarter. In subsequent years, the cadence is a two-day annual planning session in the company’s fiscal fourth quarter and then three other quarterly sessions. This is supported by monthly executive coaching sessions and troubleshooting for the CEO. Some clients are moving so fast that they feel meeting each quarter is too large a time span. In these cases, we typically schedule seasons each month.
Monkhouse & Company charge an annual retainer that, after the initial planning session, will cost in the range of £5,000 to £11,000 per month. This depends on the number of initial kick-off days you need, whether you will benefit most from monthly or quarterly sessions and the number of members of the executive team receiving executive coaching.
The £2,000 to £20,000 one-off investment
Public Scaling Up Workshop
Some CEOs know their business needs support; others start on the DIY path and become stuck. The place to go next is the Scaling Up public workshop. Monkhouse & Company run a half-day workshop at The Management Lab in the New Forest every couple of months. These executive coaching sessions cost £450 plus VAT per executive. The workshops are in person rather than virtual as, in our experience, this is more useful to the audience in maximising the speed of absorption of the material. The public workshop is ideal for companies wanting to learn some of the tools in more detail or overcome a specific obstacle or sticking point. Often a CEO will bring members of his or her team to help them overcome their reluctance about embarking on the journey. This is a unique opportunity to network with other like-minded CEOs at a similar point in the Scaling Up process. Many clients have started their coached journey at one of our workshops; they see if they like our approach and get to see the coaches in action as they are guided through the tools.
You will find “coaches” looking to charge per hour or per day. Their metric of value is time or activity rather than solidly defined business outcomes. A typical process to self-build a house is to use an architect to help you create some designs and drawings. Perhaps they were a referral from someone you know whose house you admired? Later you hire a builder and his team, ultimately some of his team will be hourly paid. Selecting a business coach to work with on strategy has similarities to selecting an architect to help you design your dream home.
The £20 to £200 investment route
Do It Yourself Scaling Up
This is the do it yourself, no business coach option. Buy a copy of Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It…and Why the Rest Don’t (Rockefeller Habits 2.0) from Amazon or Waterstones for your team and go for it. The book is a true how-to guide and includes eight open-source one-page tools that underpin implementation. Possibly even read a copy of Verne Harnish’s first book Mastering the Rockefeller Habits: What You Must Do to Increase the Value of Your Growing Firm.
There are several other books we would consider as additional core texts from Jim Collins, Patrick Lencioni, Shannon Susko and Brad Smart. There is no doubt that everything you need is in the pages of these books. You then need to bring the motivation to change and the determination to do the hard work to keep going when it gets tough.
At Monkhouse & Company, we live to create and curate weekly content to support you on this DIY journey without the need to hire a business coach. The weekly blog covers tools we use with clients, how-tos on overcoming problems we have faced ourselves or issues and challenges faced by clients. The weekly newsletter additionally reviews books, podcasts and articles we believe will help you accelerate your progress or stay the course.
The podcast, The Melting Pot with Dominic Monkhouse, has a global business audience of CEOs intent on scaling up faster with less drama. Guests on the weekly show have included Verne Harnish, Alex Osterwalder, Kim Scott, Francis Frei, Michael Bungay Stanier, L. David Marquet, Gary Ridge plus over 100 other authors, entrepreneurs and thought leaders.
Dominic Monkhouse has experience in DIY implementation
Dominic Monkhouse has gone before you on this path. At Rackspace, the chairman Graham Weston attended Verne Harnish’s MIT programme Birthing of Giants. However, the implementation of the tools was a DIY affair. This was in the time before Scaling Up coaches existed. In fact, Dominic implemented the Net Promoter System (NPS) at Rackspace in 2004, the year after the article The One Number You Need to Grow by Fred Reichheld was published in the Harvard Business Review. The executive team were among some of the early readers and implementers of Patrick Lencioni’s The Five Dysfunctions of a Team when it first appeared in 2002.
In his book, F**K Plan B: How to scale your technology business faster and achieve Plan A, Dominic Monkhouse walks readers through how to overcome what he has found to be the main barriers to success in scaling up. The book is available in paperback, kindle and audiobook from Amazon.
Companies will also find using a software tool to underpin their habit formation and reporting an advantage. We use Metronome Growth Systems software with all of our clients.
Really the challenge with the DIY approach is not in starting but in maintaining the drive, focus and discipline around implementation, as well as ensuring you are accurately executing. Consider the cost savings of not hiring a business coach against the opportunity cost of not reaching your goals. If you’re not in a hurry, then deciding not to hire a business coach should serve you just fine.
We receive feedback from every delegate, currently, over 100 CEOs have attended, and we still have a 100% record of receiving 10/10 for the value of the workshop.
See for yourself how these tools could impact you and your business. Attend the next Scaling Up Business Growth Workshop.
We worked with Dominic last year at a turning point in the business to help restructure the sales team. In the next 12 months, we have smashed it. Revenue is up by 156%, new order intake is up 136% (with fewer people) and we have engendered an amazing culture. If you need help you should call him!
Private Scaling Up Growth Workshop
These private workshops combine a strategic off-site for the CEO and the leadership team with in-depth executive coaching sessions on the Scaling Up tools. You will leave with at least a completed One Page Strategic Plan (OPSP), understanding of your unique strategic proposition, core culture defined, have done some deep work on your leadership team development and have set clear 90-day objectives for the individuals present and the business.
Commissioning a private Scaling Up workshop is a fast way to jumpstart your implementation. Private workshops are held at The Management Lab in the New Forest and last one to three days and cost £10,000 to £30,000 plus VAT in total. The only cost not included is your accommodation; the choice locally is as good as it is varied.
Two-Day Private Scaling Up Workshop Agenda
The two-day private workshop is a comprehensive long-term strategic planning session packed with business coaching. We cover the fundamental concepts of Scaling Up in detail and spend extensive time working through the One-Page Strategic Plan (OPSP) process.
Day One concentrates on People and Strategy, organised around the highly regarded One-Page Strategic Plan document. Topics covered include:
- People – how to select, hire and retain A-Players
- Core ideology – bringing your core values and purpose to life in your organisation
- BHAG® – Find your company’s big hairy audacious goal
- Brand promise – what sets you apart from the competition, how should you uniquely compete
- Annual and quarterly focus – the most critical decisions the executive team can make to drive alignment and performance.
Day Two centres on Execution and includes:
- Meeting rhythm – the critical daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual meetings plus agendas that make them effective and practical
- The Rockefeller Habits checklist – the essential habits that enable the executive time needed to run a business to drop from over 50 hours per week to under 15 hours
- OKRs – objectives and key results and how this system for setting priorities in your business will drive alignment and accountability
- Activity fit map – an analysis of the company and its competitors to identify the 3-5 differentiators that will allow us to compete on a unique strategy
In addition to the workbooks used during the coaching session, the output will be captured in Metronome Growth Systems software, and you will have the software to use free for the following 90 days to help you achieve success in building new habits.
I have worked with Dominic in the UK for nearly 7 years and he is an exceptional coach and importantly a fun person to be around. Leading an organisation can be a lonely task and having someone like Dominic to bounce ideas, problems and opportunities off with the experience he has, is both invaluable and comforting. We have introduced a methodology into our UK business with Dominic’s help that has created a growth and measurement engine that we are proud of. In the time we have worked together our UK business has grown quarter on quarter revenues 40 fold and in the last five years at a larger scale, we have grown fivefold. In an organisation where we are all students of leadership, and the learning process never ends, it helps enormously to have a talent such as Dominic in your corner.