myswagwasstatisticallysignificant.ga

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Mapping Out A Life Coaching Direction

Thursday, September 14th, 2017

If you’re thinking of a career as a wellness life coach and wonder if it is for you, here are a series of questions to explore. A person asked these of me, and with her permission, I would like to share the questions along with my responses with you.

Have a read.

1. What made you decide to get into wellness coaching? It’s funny how a life-changing event can sometimes wake us up to begin a journey of self-discovery. After the death of my first husband, I began to look for meaning and purpose and was drawn to meditation, Yoga, whole foods, and spiritual and self-development. This interest has been with me ever since – well over 40 years now. As I learned tools and insights that helped me stay strong in a world that could be experienced as unfriendly, I felt compelled to share what I learned with others. I was doing coaching before ‘coaching’ became a business. I worked with individuals, teams and couples providing one-on-one sessions, group workshops with online support for people and organizations to achieve their goals and strengthen their relationships with others through improved self-awareness and self-development processes.

2. What do you like/dislike about it? What I like about wellness coaching is that it is something that is dynamic and changes with people’s life phases; it is never ending and can be a source of ongoing exploration for the person interested in living an examined life of personal choices. What I don’t like about the wellness coaching industry is that people can get caught up in fads, fancies, and foolish ways based on someone’s hyper marketing strategies. As always, it is wise to explore who is providing the training, what type of certification you will receive and from where, what their credentials are and what other students think about the course.

3. What are the challenges? Most people who attend courses like this already have an interest in personal development so they are the converted people. Their challenge in this course, as in any adult learning experience, is to follow through, complete the training’s Action items, and if life throws them a curve, get back in the game as quickly as possible. As adult learners, life can get in the way as most people have a full life to live when they start the course.

4. What kind of person does it take to do this? The best kind of person to take this type of training and be a good wellness coach is one who has empathy for self and others. The other quality that is helpful is to be a curious person who enjoys exploring people’s content. Good questioning skills are important as a life coach. By asking good questions and being open to hear what the coachee has to say will help the person examine and explore their thoughts. To not display any of your own biases or judgments as you engage with the coachee is critical to a successful coaching experience as we all have minds that have formed opinions developed over the course of our lives. If a bias or judgment gets in the way as a coach, confront that in yourself and address it with your client. A good coach acts as a mirror and reflects back what he or she has heard and asks questions of their client for clarification of the content shared. Words are important, how they are expressed is important, and understanding context is important. We all shift our traits depending on the context we’re in – friends and family conjure up certain behaviours while business activities can conjure up a shift in our behaviours – we do this automatically but wouldn’t it be great to do it consciously. Life coaching helps a client be more mindful but coaching of this nature takes patience on the part of the coach. Great coaching skills are, therefore, empathy, curiosity, good questioning skills, non-judgmental active listening, and patience.

5. Could you do this part time? The benefit about this type of work is that you can do it part-time, full-time, as a hobby, as a community service, as a corporate business activity, one-on-one, online, face-to-face, in groups… the context of coaching is applicable to all stages, phases, and ages of life. It is really up to the individual coach whether they want to focus on a niche market, a general background, health, wellness, wealth and finances, career, seniors, money management… The avenues to explore are endless and ongoing as life changes and people change and their struggles and problems are continuous – as is the nature of life.

6. Could you make a living full time doing this and in what capacities seem to work better – self-employment, working for a company, etc? As in any field, the person driving the ship determines the journey and the destination. Where do you want to go? How are you going to get there? How will you know when you arrived? What do you have to learn along the way to navigate and adjust to in order to reach your goal/dream/vision for yourself? You could start out as a hobby, do some corporate work, do some couples coaching – keep shaping the journey until the clarity is there and the motivation to keep going brings you to a plateau of what you want to achieve; then create another plateau and so forth.

7. Is this a viable option? Viable, in what way? Financially? If financially, then you had better have a lot of enthusiasm for marketing plus social media skills and willingness to keep yourself in the game striving to get people into what is called your Funnel. Free articles, memberships, training – give them valuable content, get them interested in wanting more of what you have to offer. Have different programs and fees and offer topics of interest that people are drawn to – get them use to your style of delivery, get connected with groups who can promote your work, keep working on your own interests and market, market, market. Everything is viable with hard work, persistence, consistency, and a love of what you’re doing. I like that you say that this is what makes you feel good – helping others. That is the ‘why’ of what you want to do, which should keep you pushing forward, now you have to ask yourself to define your WHAT – what will you offer, to whom, how, and when.

8. What backgrounds generally do your students come from and what directions have they taken after taking this program. The participants have come from all walks of life, all ages, stages, phases of living and have moved on to various services of coaching – some corporate, some financial, some personal care services, some health-related topic such as thyroid coaching, fibromyalgia… Really the coaching you do is generally more about you – what interests you have and how you can contextualize it so that you become a subject-matter expert. If, as you say, you wish to be a wellness coach who wants to do one on one or small groups and workplace wellness programs, then that is what you shape and market in language that inspires you. Start to create some marketing material and see what you get. Learn to transform one life at a time – personal change is a process not an event. Keep your clients focused on their outcome and work through their obstacles turning them into stepping stones. People in the wellness industry have mentioned the importance of having a strong coaching background as a main foundation for this work.

The Wholistic Life & Wellness Coaching certification program appeals to participants for many reasons:

1. It has a practical component – lots of hands-on experience over an 8-month period.

2. It is highly group, client and peer coaching interactive.

3. It provides valuable content which is process-driven.

4. It provides teaching frameworks and forms to draw on and use with clients.

7 Frustrating Things Your Visitors Hate About Your Website

Thursday, September 14th, 2017

Why Your Business Can’t Ignore the Importance of Providing a Positive User Experience (UX)

Does your site provide the best user experience?

Bad website usability is not only bad for your users; it’s bad for your business too.

What exactly is website usability? It’s definitely one of those industry jargon terms that many entrepreneurs and business owners might not be familiar with. But should!

Website usability means: how easy is it to use your website?

If you’re unsure of what that is, then chances are you may need some help building a strategy for your website.

Your website’s use is how well it accomplishes the reason you built it. Is it to generate leads? Get someone to make a purchase? Direct people to something else? Each page of your website needs a purpose and if that purpose isn’t clear, then the usability is diminished.

When web marketers look at usability they’re looking to see whether or not a user can complete a defined task with little to no confusion or frustration.

So how do you know if your customers are finding your website easy to use?

Measuring User Experience and Usability

There are many services that have come and gone when it comes to measuring user activity and a site’s usability.

Heatmap services such as Hotjar or Crazyegg have been semi successful though woefully abused in the hands of those who don’t know what to do with the information. These types of services give the website owner a birds-eye view at where their website visitors are focusing their attention.

Testing groups can be a great asset but at the same time these are closed, controlled groups so they often inadvertently present misinformation by way of not being an accurate representation of the site’s actual target market.

The best way to check your website’s usability is your Google Analytics. Google offers its analytic web-based software for free for many reasons. One is so you can make your website better.

Within Google Analytics site owners can check things like how long someone is on a page, where they entered the page from, what they did on the page, and when they left.

If someone lands on your page and leaves nearly right away you have what is called a Bounce. If the majority of your users are bouncing (called a high bounce rate) then you have a usability issue and are offering up a bad user experience where they have left too quickly to take any action.

Another way to check is to set a conversion measurement. This is when you input information into Google Analytics that triggers a signal when someone completes a task as defined in there. You can even assign monetary values to the conversion if you want to measure the revenue generated through the conversion.

This type of analysis is best left to professionals so get in touch with my team if you need any help.

But Google doesn’t stop there with its free offerings! Try checking things like your site’s speed or mobile usability using their free tools:

Measuring usability is as complicated or as easy as your website is. Larger projects with many types of users and conversion types will have more complicated ways to measure usability but the overall message here is: does your website accomplish your business goals set for it?

Are Your Users Having A Bad Website Experience?

If you’re looking at the overall stats and the numbers are not good then it’s time to look at why your users are having a bad website experience.

Here’s 7 questions to ask yourself about your website to avoid frustrating your users:

1. Have you clearly defined what your business does and is it appealing to the right audience?

2. Did you make it as easy as possible for users to find the information they’re looking for? Typically there should be no more than 3 steps between landing on the site and finding what the user wants.

3. Can a customer contact you easily if they are stuck or have any questions?

4. Do you have any broken links on your site that will lead users to a dead end?

5. How fast does the site load (see test above)?

6. Is your website mobile responsive?

7. How transparent is your About page?

Nothing can be more frustrating than a dead end so make sure you don’t have any. Users need to have trust established by a website if they’re going to commit their time, money, or both to it.

This is where user test groups can come in handy. Universal website staples that often get forgotten are there so someone who has never been to your website before can have a good experience on it.

Check the few points listed above and if there are areas you haven’t covered or you need help with then get in touch and we’ll be able to break it all down for you.

Is User Experience Really The Same As Usability?

The experience and expectations will vary greatly between websites depending on their purpose.

For large scale big businesses, user experience transcends platforms and current award winners are melding online with offline in attempts to boost both point of sale ‘conversions’ on site and web conversions.

For anyone working in small to medium sized businesses usability is your website’s user experience so focus on that. Make sure when someone lands on your website searching for something, they find what they were needing as quickly and easily as possible.

And don’t forget your user experience doesn’t end there!

A Conversion Is Not the End of the Road for Good Website User Experience

Provide Great Support

Your user experience doesn’t stop when the conversion does.

Think about the process of your conversion from the perspective of someone performing the conversion.

Once you’re done, are you coming back to the website? If you do, are you going to be able to get the support you need right away?

Not having a support channel or any indication of one is a big negative for any user. They likely won’t buy from you if they don’t think they can contact you afterwards regarding any problems.

Refine Your Website Based on Feedback

Make sure you respond to negative feedback with more than dismissive apologies or a canned ‘thanks for the feedback we’ll work on it’ email. Users who have a bad experience during a conversion but a great experience with support can be recovered customers who will likely buy again.

Accept negative feedback as an opportunity to improve even if you disagree with it.

Take what you learn from the feedback as a gift. If a user takes the time to complain about something, treat it seriously and remedy the situation (within reason).

Maybe they completed their task but have feedback on how easy (or not) it was?

In addition to analyzing your Google Analytics, you can follow up with surveys for customers (if they opt in for having one sent to their email of course) to help refine your user experience.

If you need help drafting a survey try this list of some basic website experience survey questions to ask.