Some of the best advice you can get comes from those who are sweating over the same problems you are.
That’s why the Midlands Minority Business Accelerator (MBA) relies on entrepreneurs to serve as coaches in this intensive, yearlong program. Beth Veach, a professional business coach and serial entrepreneur in her own right, is the MBA team member who recruits and trains them.
“Part of the entrepreneurial spirit —I think it's in our DNA —is that having gone through the joys and challenges of growing a business, we just want to turn around and help somebody else,” Veach says. On the rare occasions when recruits turn her down, it’s simply because they can’t find the time.
“The coach’s job is to drive home and help the participant make more real what they’re learning in class and prep work,” Veach says. “It’s not a matter of telling people what to do, but asking, what are you learning? How are you applying it to your business today? How does it apply to your three-year growth plan?”
That said, if you stayed up all night worried about a problem in your business, your coach may set aside the curriculum for a moment to help them work through it. “There’s a real level of respect for the people in our program,” she says.
“They’re already running successful businesses, and the coaches are just helping them grow bigger and be more successful.”