Two questions that make an enrollment conversation pop!

July 18, 2011

Last week, I promised to share with you the other tweak that I made to my enrollment conversations that really helped my clients get the support they needed.  And it actually boiled down to two extra questions.  That’s all.

Before I reveal those questions, let me share with you the foundation of those questions.  See, I had known about the first of the questions for many years.  In fact, it is so interesting to me that I had this question all along.  I really understand that universal principle that says that everything we are seeking is right in front of us.

As coaches in training, we worked in triads for observer coaching.  We had an outline to follow, and it was very simple and helpful.  We first asked our client what their current reality was.  Then we asked what they wanted.  And then we asked what a first step would be that they could take in order to move to their desired reality.   A very simple and powerful outline.

The first question that made a difference in enrollment was one we learned back then.  “What have you already tried?”  This question really helps the potential client understand that they have invested time and money in things that have not worked.  It sets a foundation for the value of what they are looking for.

And the second question that made a huge difference is “What is it worth to you to get this challenge solved?”  Since you are asking your client to make an investment in coaching, it is good to establish the value that they will get from their results.

For a business client, one or two new clients would be enough to pay for the cost of coaching.  For a life coaching client, there is a cost associated with the challenge.  Determining this really helps the client understand how they could concretely benefit from coaching.

Next time you are in an enrollment conversation, try these two questions out.  Let me know if you find that they make a difference in the process.  I’d love to hear about your experiences.

And if you would like to work with me to make your enrollment conversations even more effective, send an email to info@karencappello.com and let’s set up a time to chat to see if we are a match.

Here’s wishing you smooth and effective enrollment conversations!

Love and Great Joy,

Karen

P.S.  I am very excited to share a new format for my weekly connections with you.  I will be rolling out my inaugural e-zine on August 1st, along with a new free report that I know you will love.  Stay tuned.  🙂


what really works?

July 11, 2011

(Even though the title is short, this blog post is long.  It is an important one, so please keep reading until the end. I think you will be very glad you did.) 

I am a lifelong learner, and am always on the lookout for new ways of doing things.  In April, I decided to try a new enrollment process that I had learned not too long before, and I followed the directions just as I was taught.   It worked very well.

When I looked at my numbers, I realized that 23% of the sessions that I held resulted in paying clients.  That was a good result, and worth my time for sure, but I felt that I could have done better.

I took some time to learn a bit more and tweak the process, and tried my new enrollment process 2 months later.  This time, 71% of the sessions I held resulted in paying clients.  That was quite exciting for me!

As I reflected back on what had happened, I realized that I made a few small tweaks to the enrollment process, and caused a massive change in results!

The first tweak was a mindset shift on my part.   Before I tell you about that, let me share what one of my clients wrote to me after I taught her this enrollment process (when she wrote me, I realized that this process would definitely work for others, too):

Hi Karen,

Thanks again for sharing the enrollment process.

I tried it out today with a prospect, in person, and it really went well for me.  I felt really comfortable using it and more like I was coaching, rather than selling.  It did take a bit of time, about an hour, and I am comfortable with that at this point.

My intention for the conversation is to discover more about the client, where they are looking for support, and whether I feel I can support them.  I don’t want to rush through that as I think it’s an important piece of establishing the relationship and I want them to have a quality, valuable experience.  

For the women I am working with, it is often their first time reaching for support in this way, and I want them to feel heard.  The fact I was able to do it in person makes me feel even more confident,  That was my first in-person prospect session and I thought it would be really stressful.  Not at all — it flowed beautifully!

~Coach for Working Mothers

I want to acknowledge this amazing coach for her authenticity, and for creating a quality experience for her client!

Okay, I promised to share the mindset shift that really allowed me to have such a high success rate.  I want to begin with a lead in, so you can see the progression of my thoughts.

I am already aware that each new coach contacting me for a complimentary consultation is spiritually sent to me. I have always known this.  I also know that it is my job to hold a sacred space for each new coach’s dream of making a life AND A LIVING.

I have never wanted to push anyone into coaching, or use scare tactics, or hyped marketing.  So, in my April enrollment process, and in fact, in every enrollment conversation I have had in the past 10 years, I have shied away from asking questions like “What will happen in 6 months if you don’t get a coach?” or “Tell me about the frustration of not getting the clients you want.”

When prospective clients said to me, “I’m not ready” or “I’ll let you know,” I took them at their word.  I let them take responsibility for themselves, and put them on a list to contact in the future.  I did not want to go anywhere near ‘overcoming their objections.’  Even those words sound so pushy to me!

My ‘aha’ moment and mindset shift around the enrollment conversation was that in the exact moment when I took them at their word, I abandoned the sacred space for their dream.  That is a pretty strong statement.  Yet that is the word that came to me from my guidance as to what I was doing.

When someone really wants something, and they start moving toward it, their gremlins will come out and try to talk them into staying where they are.  I know that this happens in coaching, and have helped many clients get past their gremlins.  I am very familiar with this concept and I bet you are, too.

What I had not fully realized is that this happens in the enrollment conversation, too.  Since it is my job to hold the space for their dream, I must help them get past their gremlins in that moment and get into coaching.  Coaching is the safe place for them to land.  If I do not help them get into coaching, they will be out there on their own and saying ‘no’ to their dream.

And I also became aware of the fact that the each time they said ‘no’ to their dream, it deflated just a bit.  I knew that I did not want to deflate anyone’s dream.  Ever.  When my mindset shifted, I was able to have a different enrollment conversation.

Now, I am able to support those who came to me to make their dream come true.  I am able to help my prospective clients sort out those solid good reasons for not moving forward with coaching from those fears that plagued them, and help them to gain clarity about which is which.  I am their coach, their champion, the wind beneath their wings, their soft place to land.

This is the mindset that really changed things for me, and has helped me help others in a profound way:  the understanding that many times there are gremlins keeping clients from attaining their dreams, and they will show up in the enrollment process.  I have the knowledge of what to do with gremlins.  I learned it as a brand new coach.  I  just now apply it to the enrollment process.

This is the mindset part of ‘what really works’ to support both the prospective client and the coach in the enrollment process!  Stay tuned next week for another tweak I made in the enrollment process which caused more ‘aha’ moments for me.

I hope you have enjoyed this extra long post.  I have written it for you, so that you can change your mindset and tweak your own enrollment process.

Wishing you a most wonderful week!

Love and Great Joy,

Karen

P.S.  And, if you are interested in learning more about this process and want to experience it first-hand, send an email to info@karencappello.com and ask for the questions that will start you through this enrollment process yourself.  You will get to experience it from start to finish.  🙂


Are you seeing the forest or the trees?

July 1, 2011

I had a very productive VIP day at my home just one week ago with an amazing group of coaches who are bringing love and transformation to businesses and organizations.  The women in this group are beautiful and talented, and all very accomplished, with advanced degrees (2 have their PhD’s and one is working on hers).

And as smart as they are, their answer to one of the first questions I asked them astounded me.  When I asked them their intentions for the day, they all had some very specific and tangible outcomes that they wanted to walk away with.  Everything that they wanted was very do-able.

What surprised me was that my intention list for them was much longer and robust (and just as do-able).  In fact, all of our intentions for the day were met easily.  And there was lots of laughter and connection in the process.

It got me thinking about the metaphor of seeing the forest for the trees.   When it comes to my own business, it is easy for me to see the trees that are in front of me, and to overlook those that are further away.  And it was the same for this wonderful team.  They could see what was next:  the trees closest to them.  Yet, as their coach, I could anticipate what was beyond that: the trees that were further away in the forest.  And I could prepare them for what was coming up.

This is the value of coaching.  My own coach asks me questions and supports me to look beyond where I am seeing to what is up ahead that I have not thought about yet.  She prepares me for what I may have not anticipated, but is sure to come.

So, here is my challenge to you.   If you are working with a coach, ask her what her intentions are for you.  You may be surprised.  The answer may take you to a place that is beyond where you can even imagine now.

And, if you don’t to have a coach to work with, send an email to info@karencappello.com and request an appointment for a complimentary strategy session.  I promise I will share my intentions for you with you, even after that first session.  And I bet that you may be surprised at what some of them might be.  🙂

Wishing you a most wonderful week!

Love and Great Joy,

Karen