Why Leaders Need Business Coaches Who Have Walked in Their Shoes

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Most successful people are adamant that a mentor played an integral role in their success. Business leaders all over the globe have spoken about just how influential and important the teaching and guidance from their mentor was.

A mentor is ‘a person who helps another in making a significant transition in knowledge, work or thinking’. Generally, it is someone more senior or experienced than the learner and helps them to grasp the wider significance of whatever is happening, where at first sight it might appear frivolous or insignificant.

However, many business leaders and small and medium sized business owners often engage business coaches to help them grow and evolve from business owners into business leaders. Business coaching is the outcome experienced through the dynamic relationship between a coach and the client, and how the result impacts on the client, their team and their business. While developing the business leader’s effectiveness, the coaching process focusses on ways to be effective, sustainable and measurable.

However, you can’t expect just ‘any’ coach to understand what you are going through. You may be better served by a business coach who has a proper understanding of your issues and challenges – someone who has ‘walked in your shoes’; someone who has achieved the success you strive for. There is an important ingredient to why you should use a business coach who has ‘walked in your shoes’:


Many of my clients feel that the people they have previously turned to for help or advice have not understood what it is like to run a company. Hard working business owners have not expected sympathy or pity from other when times have been hard, but they had hoped that those they turned to, could emphasise. Having a coach who has undergone a similar route in business, gives clients’ a sense of security. Knowing they identify, understand and feel the what the client is experiencing, helps solidify and strengthen the relationship that builds during the coaching process. Empathy happens when the coach can literally experience the client’s experience from another (the coaches) perspective and to know, feel and understand it.

Given an option between two groups of coaches – one group of coaches without, and the other with the personal knowledge of having experienced business ownership, it is fair to say most people will connect with a business coach who has gone through similar experiences to them. As Harper Lee wrote in “To kill a mockingbird”, “You never really know a man until you understand things from his point of view until you climb into his shin and walk around in it.”



Over the past 30 years, Evan has founded four ‘start-ups’, built them into successful businesses and gone on to sell them.  He has experienced and overcome most of the


common challenges faced by business owners and leaders and understands the pressure and stresses that running a business can cause and how important it is to manage this effectively.

He also recognises the value and importance of getting sound advice and support when faced by these common challenges and of being prepared to openly discuss issues with a coach or mentor.

Since building up his last business into a national company, and selling it in 2009, Evan has focused on coaching the leaders of small and medium-sized businesses in how to manage and overcome the many challenges that they face.  He has a Master of Business Coaching degree from Wollongong University; creating a unique blend of experience, expertise and coaching best practice for his clients.

Click here to find out more about Evan.


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