Creating a group coaching program is an excellent option for one-on-one coaches who want to expand their impact. While it isn’t meant to have the same intensity as one-on-one coaching, group coaching offers unique benefits to both students and coaches that aren’t available in a one-on-one coaching setting.
In this post, we’ll discuss some of the benefits of group coaching and how that can positively impact your students, business, life, and mission.
Benefits for Coaches
First, let’s discuss how group coaching can help your business’s growth as well as your own personal growth.
Ability to Scale and Expand Your Impact
The most obvious reason for offering group coaching is that it enables you to help more people and expand your impact. When you only offer one-on-one sessions, you’re limited in terms of how many people you can take on at a time. Meanwhile, if you create a group coaching model, you can work with groups of four, six, or eight people at once, making it much easier to grow your business and expand your impact.
In addition, you can hire assistant coaches to handle administrative tasks and even host accountability meetings and basic information sessions.
In fact, veteran coach Todd Herman structures many of his programs so that the assistant coach handles most of the calls. Here’s how he structures his 90 Day Year Program:
- Monday: Assistant coach leads the call, and students set the priorities of the week.
- Wednesday: Assistant coach leads the call and helps students get “unstuck.”
- Thursday: Todd gets on a call and helps students with whatever they are struggling with.
- Friday: Assistant coach leads the call, and people talk about their results for that week.
As you’ll notice, Todd himself is only on one coaching call per week with his students, but they are still getting the benefit of almost daily calls that help them remain accountable. As you can see, expanding your impact and scaling is much easier with a group coaching program than a one-on-one coaching program.
Become a Better Coach
As you work with multiple people, you’ll be exposed to significantly more learning styles and challenges than most one-on-one coaches ever will. Therefore, you’ll gain the same experience in a matter of weeks that a one-on-one coach would have to spend years to obtain.
You’ll also learn how to create solution frameworks that you can transfer to multiple students as group coaching eliminates the luxury of creating personalized instructions for each student. While this time constraint may seem like a negative, it will help you identify the 80/20 of the solution and clearly articulate your ideas.
Coaching more students also means you’ll receive 3x, 4x, and 6x the amount of feedback a one-on-one coach would receive, which will help you improve your program at a faster rate.
As a one-on-one coach, the only option you have to make more money is to book more coaching sessions. However, there is a limit to how much you can scale time for money and it won’t be long before you can’t scale anymore. In many cases, coaches find their limit by booking more students than they can handle and it eventually leads to poorer quality sessions and burnout.
Group coaching fixes this as your hourly rate will shift from a set price with a ceiling to a much more scalable value.
You may have to charge less per student in your group coaching program, though your overall profits will be higher because you’ll be able to accept more students.
For example, let’s say you previously charged $2,000 per month per student, but now you only charge $1,000 per month for group coaching students. In this scenario, the time you previously spent with one student each month generated $2,000, though a cohort of six students replacing that one student now generates $6,000 per month.
Even though it may seem counterintuitive that taking on more students will give you more time, many effective group coaches have found this is true. The key is to stick to a framework similar to Todd’s group program structure and avoid treating it like a one-on-one coaching program.
Another key to freeing up your time is employing the right tools to streamline administrative processes and other elements of the course.
For example, many upcoach users appreciate the platform because it allows students to consume the content before the lesson. This makes the calls more valuable as you’re answering higher-level questions rather than teaching on the call.
In addition, an effective group coaching platform will allow you to track student habits, quickly view student progress, schedule meetings, and house all of the content in one place.
At the moment, upcoach is the only platform that offers all of these features in one place, so feel free to check it out here if you’re still trying to piece together several platforms.
Now that you have some extra time, you can take on other projects such as speaking gigs, book deals, and other opportunities that will help you expand your brand. In other words, you’ll finally be able to work on your business rather than in your business, and you’ll be able to build a sustainable personal brand.
Benefits for Clients
Most coaches that are hesitant to switch to a group coaching format have a similar objection. “Sure, it would be nice to make more money, but my top priority is producing transformational results. That’s why I’m a coach. So by taking on more clients, I won’t be able to have the same impact.”
It’s true that you’ll have to change your coaching style, though group coaching programs offer unique benefits for clients that one-on-one coaching programs can’t offer. Let’s discuss a few of them.
Sense of Community
One-on-one coaching is a great way for students to talk to you personally about their goals and challenges. However, you also become a bottleneck to their growth.
For example, if your student has a challenge on Tuesday, but you don’t meet until Friday, they will be stuck for another two days, hindering their growth. If you try to counteract this by always making yourself available all the time, you’ll eventually burn out.
Fortunately, you usually aren’t the only one with all the answers. Sometimes, finding a solution just takes someone else that has been in a similar situation to look at it from a different perspective.
This is why creating a group coaching program is valuable. Your students can all learn from each other as they can often figure out the answer for themselves with the help of your content. In addition, they won’t feel so alone on the journey to their goal as they’ll have the opportunity to connect with other people at a similar stage of their lives or career.
In fact, upcoach’s founder David Henzel revealed that many of the students that took his group coaching program stayed connected for years to come and even continued weekly meetups.
The key to creating an excellent community is having a single streamlined platform that makes it easy for your students to chat with one another.
Therefore, when building upcoach, we included chat features, discussion forums, and more to make it easy for people to connect.
If you’d like to try upcoach for yourself, you can sign up today.
One of the biggest challenges for coaches is making your teachings part of each student’s lifestyle. Often, learning the material is relatively easy – the hard part is changing a student’s habits. Of course, the solution to improving habits is building accountability (requiring students to track habits and report their progress).
While one-on-one coaches can certainly hold students accountable, it takes time away from the actual coaching session. In addition, making lifestyle changes are difficult, and some students may need more support than a weekly report to their coach. Otherwise, they may become frustrated and quit.
Group coaching programs solve these issues because students can hold each other accountable.
You’ve probably heard the saying that you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with as you pick up their habits and lifestyle choices.
Therefore, while a one-on-one coach can serve as one of those five people for the student, a group coaching program that introduces each student to four or five other like-minded individuals (in addition to yourself) is much more impactful.
The founder of upcoach, David Henzel, discovered the power of peer accountability, and it helped him increase course completion rates from 7% to 94% and dramatically elevated student results.
Today, students in his course, called Managing Happiness, are separated into accountability groups of 3-4 people. They meet once per week outside of the scheduled course material and review the habits that they tracked during the week. If a student fails to follow a certain habit, the group can mastermind to figure out a solution.
While most coaching platforms don’t offer habit tracking and group accountability, David realized how important this is and added it to the upcoach.
Here’s a look at the habit tracker inside upcoach. If you don’t have a solid habit tracker built into your platform, consider trying upcoach.
While the coach often has the most experience of anyone in the group, other students probably have new, creative ideas to solve the problems of their fellow members. This is particularly true for more tactical problems, such as how to get your first customer.
For example, if you as a coach got your first customers ten or fifteen years ago, the same strategies you used then probably won’t work today. However, there is a pretty good chance that one of the other students in your course has figured out a way that still works today.
Networking is often just as powerful as the coaching sessions themselves. For many students, the biggest value add is just connecting with others working towards the same goal. Though in some cases, these connections might result in major business deals.
In addition, increasing the number of people in the group also increases the network effect. For example, you as a coach may have a few hundred possible contacts you could introduce a student to, though a group of four or five students gives each student access to a network of thousands of potential contacts.
In addition, one of my favorite aspects of group coaching is that the other students can also introduce you to a host of various resources. For example, I was in a group coaching session for entrepreneurs, and the other students have given me plenty of resources such as tools to build my website, cold email software, and more.
Creating a group coaching program is one of the best ways to maximize the student’s experience and expand your impact. You’ll also be able to scale your business and free up your time for higher-level activities such as speaking engagements, book deals, content creation, and other activities that can build your brand.
If you need a platform that supports your group coaching program, feel free to check out our own platform, upcoach, and see if it’s the right fit for your program.