Podcast Episode 12
Crafting Your Coaching Brand
Welcome to another episode of the Coaches Commonplace Podcast, where we delve into the realm of personal growth and self-improvement. Join us as we discuss valuable insights and practical tips to help you establish a strong foundation for your coaching business. This week we cover a wide range of topics that will empower you to create a transformative coaching experience for your clients including mastering the skill of coaching, asking insightful daily questions, living what is most important to you, and working through feelings and attachments with clients.
Throughout this episode, we return several times to the idea of making a brand for yourself in the way that you interact with your clients and how you structure your business. When it comes to structuring your coaching business, it’s crucial to establish a clear vision and brand identity that resonates with your target audience. We discuss how to overcome these hurdles to define your niche and identify the specific needs and pain points you can address as a coach. We also get into how you can define and express the values that set you apart from competitors and communicates the unique benefits clients can expect from your coaching services.
This week on the Coaches Commonplace:
- Asking insightful daily questions
- Living what is most important to you
- Working through emotions and attachments with clients
- Structuring your coaching brand
- Earning recognition and money
Brilliant Miller [00:00:00] Mr. Dean Miles.
Dean Miles [00:00:01] Brilliant Miller.
Brilliant Miller [00:00:02] Good to see you.
Dean Miles [00:00:03] Yeah, and I’ve enjoyed, well, this is our second time being live in studio.
Brilliant Miller [00:00:08] Yes.
Dean Miles [00:00:08] And it’s different, but I do like it.
Brilliant Miller [00:00:11] I do, too. And this coaches commonplace podcasts that we’re doing is all about helping coaches to be more effective, to earn recognition and money, to make a difference in their clients lives, to enjoy that process, to be the best version of themselves, live their healthiest, happiest, most meaningful life. So that’s what I’m here about.
Dean Miles [00:00:31] It’s such a great goal. It’s taken some work for us to distill it down to those key components. But some of the feedback that I’ve been getting, is the timeliness of these topics, especially for the upcoming newer coaches. The margin of error in being able to start over again is just not there. There’s just so much noise within the coaching space that when you do start, you want to start well, you want to build that credibility quick and you need to make money today. Yeah. And so excited about our goals.
Brilliant Miller [00:01:02] Yeah, me too. Let’s start, as we usually do with our information diet. Recognizing humans are infovores. Yes. Constantly consuming and not just what media or content that you and I have been consuming, but in particular what is inspiring you?
Dean Miles [00:01:20] I like that. It makes me think so. Leftovers. Do you like leftovers?
Brilliant Miller [00:01:27] Not so much.
Dean Miles [00:01:27] It’s not your favorite?
Brilliant Miller [00:01:28] Not so much.
Dean Miles [00:01:29] So there are some things that are better.
Brilliant Miller [00:01:31] Yes.
Dean Miles [00:01:31] I think like pizza, cold chicken. Yeah. I’m not saying that that’s where I want to start. But the second time around, I think chili gets better. What’s my point with that? I’ve been with coaching and coaching as long as I have. There are some things that I read 20 years ago now that I’m going and doing it again. And so one of them is Tim Urban, who has a website, a podcast, a blog. I’ll get the right word out of a waitbutwhy.com and one of the articles that he wrote that went viral was around procrastination. And he ended up doing a TED talk about it. And so this last week I’ve gone back and reread that and rewatched that. We’re coming up to the half point of the year. And I find myself, I find my clients, we tend to dip at the halfway point. So Wednesdays is not our best effort after the year. We’re tired, we are exhausted, we’re transitioning. And I’m a pretty chronic procrastinator. And so being reminded of how I set myself deadlines, and that invites the panic monster and to help my rational decision-maker get back on board. Because I can coast coming into the summer and I’ll quit and stay. And so to be reminded of deadlines and my. My ability to procrastinate longer than what’s healthy. Hmm.
Brilliant Miller [00:02:55] Well, I love what you’re saying about inviting the panic monster. Yeah, right. And I think about something. Someone I really admire, Buckminster Fuller. He said don’t fight forces. Use them. Right. And so you recognize the leverage that you can get on yourself by having the deadline, making the commitment. Right. I love that. And at the same time, I find myself kind of wanting to go into coaching mode right here about self-compassion and, yes, recognizing nobody’s ever always on nobody’s ever, always anything. And they’re cycles, right, of activity and then rest and rejuvenation. But anyway, I didn’t mean to make this a coaching session.
Dean Miles [00:03:29] Did I need a couch in here and lay down some tissues? That’s a great reminder. It’s a great reminder. Yeah. Thanks for that.
Brilliant Miller [00:03:37] Coaching. Yeah. So wait, why the TED talk? I haven’t seen that TED talk.
Dean Miles [00:03:41] It’s well worth 12 minutes. Right. And what we talked about, what he was surprised by. There’s a lot of things in life, a lot of things in coaching that have deadlines. Mm-hmm. So if you’re going to be successful in coaching, you’re going to you will learn to meet those deadlines. But there’s other things that they don’t have. Deadlines. Yeah, like reading your own development. There’s a deadline in your finances. There’s no deadline on that. Your physical health. Yeah. And so we start doing this. Well, I’ll start on Monday.
Brilliant Miller [00:04:09] Mm-hmm. That tomorrow? Yeah. It’s always tomorrow.
Dean Miles [00:04:12] Always tomorrow.
Brilliant Miller [00:04:13] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:04:14] That’s where I’ve been reminded. What about those things that don’t have deadlines? And that’s where I can procrastinate to my own peril?
Brilliant Miller [00:04:21] Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. All right. Well, I will share with you a little bit about what I’ve been consuming that has been interesting, useful, and inspiring to me. One is I went and saw a movie in the theater, which I don’t do all that often, Popcorn. I did get a small popcorn, no butter, I did no butter.
Dean Miles [00:04:45] Can we all just “boo”?
Brilliant Miller [00:04:48] Done, I’ve lost 25 lbs since January.
Dean Miles [00:04:50] I can see it.
Brilliant Miller [00:04:51] Oh.
Dean Miles [00:04:52] So I want the butter. Don’t kid yourself. That butter could have brought you joy, you’re denying yourself.
Brilliant Miller [00:05:00] What else are you denying?
Dean Miles [00:05:01] That’s exactly right.
Brilliant Miller [00:05:03] So I went to see “Air”, the Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, the story of Jordan coming to Nike when they only had 17% of the basketball market back in 1985 when the NBA Finals were still broadcast on tape delay. And Jordan absolutely didn’t want to go to Nike. Right. But that whole the not to spoil anything about the film, I think it’s fun and worth watching. And incidentally, I think it’s kind of interesting that we’re in this period where a few retro things are coming back as stories, Right? Like the story of Tetris. Yes. Which I also watched on an airplane and found fascinating because I was addicted to that as a kid. Yeah. So but watching this, the thing that inspired me about the film were a few things. One was the character of Matt Damon played, who basically was he was relentless. You know, he had clarity and he just move forward in trying to sign Jordan. And we know how that has played out. And then later on when Jordan’s mom, who was his advocate. Right. And he’s a pretty shrewd business person himself. But where ultimately when they agreed to sign with Nike that she put in the contract at the last minute, insisted that it was in that he would get a percentage of all jumpman merchandise, the Air Jordan merchandise. And although it’s not public, it’s believed that Jordan now earns $400 million of passive income every year from the sale of those. And it was because his mom asked for it and also because he knew his value, she knew his value and asked for it. And I think as coaches, we often don’t ask for or maybe even demand.
Dean Miles [00:06:41] Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:06:42] Right. What true value is.
Dean Miles [00:06:46] Charles Barkley, I want to say maybe in the last three weeks has gone on the record of. What Michael Jordan’s mom did for him. Michael Jordan did for Charles Barkley. Charles Barkley had a contract with Nike and was getting, I think, $10 million a year. And Charles asked Michael Jordan, am I missing something? And he’s like, you don’t need 10 million every year. I mean, you don’t need that. Get it in stock. And Charles said changed it changed his financial legacy. Just that little tidbit now enough to pat ourselves on the back. In one sense, that’s what the commonplace is about, is to inspire and share our stories of what questions did we ask, how are we getting paid, what we’re getting paid? So what are you going to do with that? What are you going to do differently now that you’ve had your non-buttered popcorn watching this movie?
Brilliant Miller [00:07:42] Well, you know, what I think about this is how change as we know it, one-level change is inevitable. But also we can make change happen. And when we tend when we think of innovation, we tend to think of new technology. Right. There was some cool new gadget or, you know, something like GPT three come along. And clearly that’s one form of innovation, right? But there’s another form of innovation which is and I learned this from the futurist and technologist, Nick Webb, who talks about changing a business model. Right. And part of the reason Nike was reluctant to do this was they recognize, oh, now every athletes can ask for this is going to change our model. Hmm. And so it’s this question of what? What is possible that I’m not present to? What am I not asking? That could change not just the results I’m getting, but how I’m going about it. Right. And I think about this with Tony Robbins back when he did the infomercials, like in the eighties, the Cheesy things. That was a huge breakthrough for his business, but that was a result. I’ve heard him share this at a seminar where he said the operative question for that was, how can I make money even while I sleep? And it was that question, and he kept asking it with intensity and repetition that opened that up. So to me, it’s this usefulness of questions, looking at a new way of, you know, operating, you know, that kind of thing. And then the last part of that to kind of go backwards is, I think, also choosing to believe that my coaching has a value, right, you know, greater than maybe others. See.
Dean Miles [00:09:16] This is an easy addition to the creative brief we discussed in the last episode of those types of questions. To then add, you know, maybe as a second time around. So now you’ve gone through your creative brief, your excuse, your creative brief. You’re looking at the things that you’re measuring, and then adding these particular questions to it. Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:09:38] Absolutely.
Dean Miles [00:09:39] All right. So you tell me you had two things. What was this? I did.
Brilliant Miller [00:09:41] The second thing I’m going to bring up when we get into being a great coach.
Dean Miles [00:09:45] The teaser.
Brilliant Miller [00:09:45] The teaser, yeah. It’s a classic personal growth book.
Dean Miles [00:09:50] Okay.
Brilliant Miller [00:09:51] But it will have to do with what we talk about when we talk about helping people be effective coaches. Right. And I’ll just set this up before we get there about I assert that coaching is a skill, just like hitting a baseball or driving a stick shift or baking a cake that yeah, maybe some people have a greater aptitude to do it or to do it well. Right. But pretty much anyone can learn it, right? And so what I’ll share when we get there that I’ve learned from this book are games people play by Eric Burn. So that’s the setup.
Dean Miles [00:10:25] Well, I can’t wait.
Brilliant Miller [00:10:25] But before we get there, yes, let’s talk about something that can help us live a good life, a deeper, more meaningful, happier, healthier life. Okay. This is something I’ve learned from Marshall Goldsmith, something he challenged me to do. Pretty much everyone that he spends any meaningful time with, he challenges them or invites them to try it as well, something he calls the daily questions. Okay. Before we started recording, you told me that you’ve been doing the daily questions for almost ten years now.
Dean Miles [00:10:51] That’s right.
Brilliant Miller [00:10:52] What are the daily questions? How do you use it and how is your life different?
Dean Miles [00:10:55] Yeah, so it was in the book Triggers, and he and Mark, Marcia Goldsmith, and Mark Reiter make a really compelling case of to graduate to accelerate beyond to-do list of did I eat healthy today? Did I read something today? Did I tell my wife that I love her from yes and no to did I do my best today? And they said that making that progress, I must say, of maturity, the first discipline is just doing it or not doing it right. And then once you get consistent in doing it, now, it’s to what level of effort are you doing it? And so they challenge me just the right way. So this is a list that you create. This isn’t, they don’t give you the list. This is not your mom giving you the list.
Brilliant Miller [00:11:44] Doesn’t come from religion.
Dean Miles [00:11:46] Exactly right.
Brilliant Miller [00:11:47] So these are your commandments?
Dean Miles [00:11:48] No. Yeah. Which would be way easier to dismiss them. Right. So these are things that I’ve told myself. Dean Miles, this is what’s most important to you. Yeah. And so they make the recommendation. Have three or four things to me. Pass. Marshall Goldsmith’s been doing this for over three, over 30 years, and he’s hired a virtual assistant that calls him at 9 p.m. every night, seven days a week, and whatever time zone he happens to be in. So she has his calendars off. He’s in Dubai or Atlanta, Georgia, or California. 9 p.m. His phone rings. I think he’s got 15 or so questions and she will ask him each question. So Marshall, one to not or 1 to 10, what’s your score? So I started off just with some basic ones around creating new content, meditation, and interacting with Melanie and each one of the kids. I think I’m well over five. I think I had ten or so. And then finances. They were not the right questions. And I struggled because it’s subjective. But your gut knows. Did I do my best today? So then I change up the questions. So now I’ve been doing this, like you said, nine coming up on ten years. And I hate it because I can’t justify quitting it because this only takes maybe 10 seconds at the end of the day to write these numbers in. Yeah. So what am I admitting? Yeah, it’s a time thing. It’s just I’m not doing what I said. It was most important to me. Right. So I keep doing it. And then I also can’t ask clients to do it if I’m not doing it myself. Sure. And so, Mark, Writer Marshall Stats were the same as what I’m finding. Most people that I tell this to won’t start it. And I actually ask them not to because I’m like, You’re not going to like it and you won’t continue to do it. Just one more thing for you to fill out. And then those that do start less than a third will make it through the first week. It’s just so hard to look in the mirror and to confront the fact that you’re not doing your best over and over and over and over again. So now, over the years, the last three years, I will go anywhere between 30 days and six months. And I’ll pick somebody or somebody will pick me. So many people within our 100 coaches network I’ve done this with. So with Mark Reiter, the coauthor, we did this for the month of February. And so just gives me someone else to do these things with. Yeah, you get new perspectives, different feedback. But it’s changed my life. It really, really has. Yeah, but I do hate it.
Brilliant Miller [00:14:30] Yeah. Yeah. It’s not the easiest thing, right? It would be easier not to do it right.
Dean Miles [00:14:36] Because most of us, if you were to ask me to Dean, how was your week? And these are important to you. As I reflect back, I mean, you know, it went well. Brilliant. I think you’re really not that out of the park. And what I’m thinking about that that one day that I did it and the other six days I didn’t think about it. Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:14:53] Yeah. This reminds me of something I once read. Candy said is happiness is when what we say and what we do are congruent.
Dean Miles [00:15:00] Yeah, like that.
Brilliant Miller [00:15:01] Right. And with something like the daily questions that can be confronting to start by even identifying what are these things? Is it 30 minutes on the treadmill? Is it again, like you said, you know, giving my kid a hug and telling them I love them? Is it, you know, writing in my journal or whatever it is for you that represents an it can be not just the presence of something like eating, you know, six green vegetables, but also did I avoid sugar? Right. There’s almost no end to the way we can use this. Whether it’s like you said, it’s scaling. Yes, Yes or no. Did I do my best? There’s some subjective in there, but there’s this whole component of looking at what do I really want? Am I truly committed to that step one? That can be confronting, right? And then you get into it and now your actions are either congruent with that or they’re not. And then that’s information.
Dean Miles [00:15:51] I can’t tell you how many times is particularly mean because there’s the right answer. And they will say the what’s most important to me is my family. Okay. Pull out your calendar.
Brilliant Miller [00:16:08] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:16:09] Let’s look at the last 90 days. I get. No, it’s not minute from minute, but just is there any evidence to support that you’ve done your best.
Brilliant Miller [00:16:18] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:16:19] How do you define that? What are the leading indicators around that? And how would you even know if that’s what’s most important?
Brilliant Miller [00:16:25] Right.
Dean Miles [00:16:26] And there is such a disconnect. But that’s the right answer. Yeah, but it’s not congruent.
Brilliant Miller [00:16:34] Yeah, it’s not always easy. And what’s that? The same by Jung. About a person will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own soul is like delay, procrastinate, lie to ourselves. Right. You know, whatever. Excuse me, but this. Yeah. The daily questions practice. Just thinking if somebody’s listening to this, they wanted to try it for themselves and they’ve heard about Marshall. Has someone who calls him or you’ve done it with other partners?
Dean Miles [00:17:02] Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:17:03] I would just jump to this. I actually would invite people to try this if they’re not doing something like it already. Not that we need more to do, but the this can be I would say, like clearing this could be a space in which our highest values and our deepest desires truly show up.
Dean Miles [00:17:18] Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:17:19] Right. And then say and to not make it like to make the game winnable. Like start simple, like start small. Pick these things 3 to 5 things each day. It can be a few seconds. It can, right? It doesn’t need to be big. And then part of what I love, to which we didn’t expressly talk about, is at the end when you kind of check. Yes, no, 0 to 10, whatever. There’s no explanation. There’s no penance. There’s no. That’s right. Right. It’s just information. And then you go forward and it’s the next day. So that’s my that’s my thought.
Dean Miles [00:17:53] I like that a lot. It may make it winnable. What if Mark Reiter were sitting here? What he would say is, that between Marshall and his daughter, both of these, they figured it out. The recipe is it’s daily.
Brilliant Miller [00:18:10] Mm.
Dean Miles [00:18:12] So my encouragement is don’t do this weekly.
Brilliant Miller [00:18:15] Right.
Dean Miles [00:18:17] That’s going to be your tendency, you know, how about I just do this on Sundays? I’ll reflect on the week and I’ll give myself a score. Yeah, they’ve done the research behind it. Brilliant. It must be daily. Yeah, because it’s those small incremental steps that you start to get that exponential, that compounding type of impact.
Brilliant Miller [00:18:38] Yeah, well, and that creates momentum in our lives too, right. Like, and there’s that saying that what you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while. So this like you’re saying? Yeah, consistency over intensity.
Dean Miles [00:18:49] I think. Daniel Pinker science has something about that of you can go to. Going to the dentist is probably a wise thing to do. It’s pretty intense to the end, the whole system. You could not do that every single day. So the consistency of brushing your teeth. And so somebody was asked, how many times do you have to brush your teeth to get the positive impact? And he’s like, I don’t know. How many times can I miss and still maintain the positive impact? He’s like, I don’t know. I just know if you brush your teeth every day for a really long time, there’s significant impact on your oral health. And I think it’s the same thing with picking the right tool to reach the 3 to 5 things that are winnable. Yeah. And then do your best. And then my favorite part. Go to bed right now. Of course, there’s no roll over momentum or roll over minutes, so the score starts over again to if you had a day that you didn’t do your best, you do it the next day. But I also like the flexibility. So let’s let’s think about physical stuff. If on a day like today, maybe my schedule’s tight today if I did ten push ups today, nor my calendar is that could be a best effort today. Tomorrow my schedule’s not nearly as full like you. And actually, you and I are playing golf. And if I only did ten push ups, that’s probably a three that day. So allows for the flexibility of life.
Brilliant Miller [00:20:12] Yeah. Which we’re going to bet push ups, too, by the way. So you’re going to have a chance to do even more push ups. I don’t bet money, but I bet push ups.
Dean Miles [00:20:22] So we’ll all wrestle for this decision. Okay. See where this goes? I just felt like that. Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:20:28] Well, let’s transition to something that can help people listening. People watching to be great coaches.
Dean Miles [00:20:34] Okay.
Brilliant Miller [00:20:35] Love. It feels like a grand ambition, but I believe it’s possible. I’m committed. It is possible. And as I said, it’s a skill. It’s not just a talent. It’s not just a lucky few or whatever or some other kind of person. But it’s it’s a possibility for each of us. And of course, desire is, I think, foundation for that. But people who are listening to this, I think, have that desire. But what I would present for our discussion, our exploration in this conversation is commitment is about commitment. And here’s the thing. If you having a conversation with your coaching client and they’re just telling you how their week’s been, they’re sharing with you their problems, their drama, the stories, right? Like that’s probably a conversation like they have with their friends or maybe their spouse.
Dean Miles [00:21:24] Bartender.
Brilliant Miller [00:21:24] A bartender, right. Something like that. Know they can have that conversation with a lot of people. But the thing is, I think there are certain conversations that are unique, if not rare, to coaches, right? So what that suggests to me is that as coaches, we have a privilege and I think a responsibility to make sure that our conversations have a certain quality, like a certain tenor. That just a B.S. session with a friend over coffee doesn’t have. Right. And this is a little bit of a tangent on this point, but one thing when I train coaches, I’ll say, look, if you is can feel paradoxical because it’s not comfortable to interrupt somebody. Right. But if you understand this person has come to you, they’ve given you permission to coach them. They’ve asked you to coach them. Interrupting you can actually be one of the most powerful things you can do. And if you’re allowing someone to just share that same sad story, the sob story, you’re actually not serving them. Right. But that’s not the point I wanted to make. And that’s the point I wanted to make was about commitment. Yes, right. And this reminds me, when I learned to podcast, I’m still learning. Right? But when I studied the art of interviewing, one of the things that I read was that a great interview sounds like a conversation to a listener. It’ll sound like a conversation, but it’s not a conversation, right? Right. There’s an intention. There’s a path, right? There’s some preparation for it. There’s the give and take the back and forth. It’s deliberate, right? But as you’re hearing it, you wouldn’t know like, oh, this was there was some work put in necessarily. And now this thing sounds effortless. Coaching, I think, is the same way, right?
Dean Miles [00:23:07] I agree with that. What you’re making me about is it’s a commitment to I think one can I is just knowing different processes. So one of them the sub or the person sharing their story this that story that’s process coaching. And so to be committed to in that moment keep them going. Say more. Hmm. What else? Make that tell me the sadder version of that story and what else is there? And you take them down and down and down and down and down and down way further than the bartender’s going to take them way further than the spouse is going to take them. You’ve taken them through this process and you’re trusting the process that they will then get to the point. They’re going to discover something in this sad story that they’ve never experienced before. And then they come in and this resonates and they come back out with some new insight. Yeah, but you’re committed to doing something on purpose. Same thing with your interview style.
Brilliant Miller [00:24:09] Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. And, when I hear you describe it that way, what I tend to think is, is my opinion, right? That as long as that’s in service to the creation of something.
Dean Miles [00:24:21] That’s right.
Brilliant Miller [00:24:22] The realization of something, it’s forward-looking, right? Because I don’t think it’s just down or back, like Tell Me More and what was your childhood and how do you feel about all that? I mean, maybe there’s a time and place for that in coaching. In fact, I’m sure there is, right? But I tend to think that’s more the realm of therapy, where I think effective coaching is creating a great distinction.
Dean Miles [00:24:42] So it’s a great distinction. So let’s keep pulling that apart. So in this sad story, as a coach I’m listening for and “that made me feel distant.”
Brilliant Miller [00:24:51] Hmm.
Dean Miles [00:24:52] Pause. Right. There’s an interruption. Let’s talk about being distant or else. Do you feel distant?
Brilliant Miller [00:24:58] Mm hmm.
Dean Miles [00:24:59] And that’s where you go and explore all the four corners on emotion. So it’s less of I was potty trained to early and more of just going deep into an emotion, a feeling that you had. And where else does that show up for you? Yeah. And then where’s the saboteur in this? And then, you know, Now what do you want to do with that?
Brilliant Miller [00:25:17] Right.
Dean Miles [00:25:18] But it’s a commitment to you have to know the craft, right. Of what you’re doing to take someone further than they naturally would go on their own.
Brilliant Miller [00:25:26] Right? Yeah, absolutely. And to me, also, the whole thing about like, well, what would you rather be? What is it that you truly want? What’s the real issue here?
Dean Miles [00:25:35] What’s the lie? Yeah, What’s the lie here?
Brilliant Miller [00:25:40] I love that kind of reminds me. I interviewed somebody once who said in his coaching, it always started, like, as quickly as he could get. There was, What’s the attachment like? Where are you stuck? Yeah, you know, it’s kind of an afterthought. I think it’s a lie. Let me go. Let me keep going on this because what I’m. So what we’re talking about is that coaching, an effective coaching conversation is not just a friendly conversation. There’s an intention. There’s a direction. Yes, right. There’s yes. I believe that the most effective coaching is it is co-equal. It’s co-created. I like the. You’re not the guru. You’re not the sage. You’re another human being in this conversation with somebody. You’re there. I believe you’ll be most effective when that’s a service orientation. Yes. Right. Generous listening. You’re holding space, right? You’re listening. Your intuition like all this. But then where this leads me. When we come back, two commitments. Wright is I like to end my coaching conversations with three things. One is I love Michael Monk’s tenure. This is the last thing I’ll do. His question of what was most valuable for you here today? Right? So that’s for me, the very last thing. And that. Provides an opportunity for reflection and realization. You know, plus, it usually ends on a high note, which is valuable. We know the peak in theory, the most intense, and the last part of any experience is what gets remembered. So true. So why not do yourself a favor as a coach and just help the client remember what was most valuable for you here today? Hang up the phone or the zoom or whatever. And it’s like, Oh yeah, that was really valuable, right? But that was one thing. The other is I like to to ask, just to confirm, I actually don’t like to get into scheduling. That can become a long thing. Right? And most of my coaching engagements are multi-month. So we have a structure already. But just to confirm, hey, our next conversation is going to be I have a scheduled for this. Right. And in that way, that structure, that’s the overarching thing here is and holding space not just in any single conversation, but in the relationship. Right. So that’s the second thing in reverse order. But the one before that is, would you be willing to make a commitment around this, whatever this was. Right. And inviting that client to reflect on, Is there something that they’re willing to do, a conversation they’re willing to have or some action they’re willing to take or something they’re willing to stop doing between now and the next time you talk or now and another date. But that power of a commitment, a committed action, Yes. Is what changes lives. Right. So I’ve gone on a little long and there’s more I want to say.
Dean Miles [00:28:22] But yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:28:23] What do you think?
Dean Miles [00:28:24] Good. It makes me think of. We’re. We’re training our client of what is the experience to be coached by us.
Brilliant Miller [00:28:33] Right.
Dean Miles [00:28:34] So I’m going to go back to you talking about going to the movie theater. When you sit down, what do you know’s can be the first thing that’s going to happen after you sit down?
Brilliant Miller [00:28:46] Usually there’s going to be some really loud sound because the previews, previews or volume reviews are first.
Dean Miles [00:28:51] Yeah, and higher because people are chatting. Yeah, lights are still up a little bit. They come down, but they’re still there. Yep. Then what happens?
Brilliant Miller [00:29:00] Well, then there’s. So, like, after the previews and then the film starts.
Dean Miles [00:29:04] Yeah. Until we. The screen widened a little more. Yeah, it gets darker. Maybe they remind you phones off, like, for real this time.
Brilliant Miller [00:29:13] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:29:13] Yeah, You get it. And then at the end, soft lighting credits roll. Right. But if you go see a marvel movie, do you leave when the credits are rolling?
Brilliant Miller [00:29:22] Not usually.
Dean Miles [00:29:22] No, because we’ve been trained.
Brilliant Miller [00:29:25] Yeah, there’s a little extra something coming.
Dean Miles [00:29:27] Yeah. As a coach brand, I do the same thing. I start every coaching session the same way, and they know it now. The first time they don’t know. So we designed some of that. So at the end that what I like we are going, we designed Bridgepoint coaching off this quote Samuel Johnson that we need to be reminded more than were instructed. Mm-hmm. So the first question I ask at the end is, So what were you reminded of?
Brilliant Miller [00:29:55] Mm-hmm.
Dean Miles [00:29:57] Because I built my whole coaching system on being reminded.
Brilliant Miller [00:30:00] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:30:01] Then I ask what’s become more clear?
Brilliant Miller [00:30:03] Mm-hmm.
Dean Miles [00:30:04] Sometimes that’s not the same answer. Then I ask for a commitment from them. Mm-hmm. And then I add of the question, because I’ve been listening to you. And my last question is, what’s been most meaningful?
Brilliant Miller [00:30:17] Mm-hmm.
Dean Miles [00:30:19] Because I do mostly corporate coaching. The first three answers tend to be a professional answer. Mm-hmm. When I ask what was most meaningful, I’m starting. I’m hearing more of the human being and them in that moment. Yeah. And that’s been. And it’s just been an addition here in 2023. You know that final question.
Brilliant Miller [00:30:38] That’s awesome. That’s really cool. Yeah. Well, when I talked in the info diet part of this conversation, the thing that I had taken, one of the things I had taken from this book games people play, the transactional analysis. This is the idea that in every moment each of us is in one of three personas. We’re either in an adult persona, we’re in a parent persona, or we’re in a child persona. Okay. Right. And if we’re in a conversation or some other interaction with another person, they also aren’t an adult, a parent or a child. And how well that works depends on where we are in those interests. It’s quite I think it’s quite fascinating.
Dean Miles [00:31:16] Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:31:18] What I wanted to talk about, about this conversation is Erik Byrne introduces this idea of structure hunger. Right. And what he says is, look, he talks about our need for like acknowledgment of affirmation, of physical affection from the time we’re done, born from the time we’re born. Right. That he refers to it as stroking, that we know, you know, from science that’s been studies that have been done that children that don’t have that aren’t held, that aren’t talked to, that aren’t paid attention to. Right. You talked about this with the mothers.
Dean Miles [00:31:51] Yeah, The father. Right? It’s exactly right.
Brilliant Miller [00:31:53] Right. Talk about that for a moment.
Dean Miles [00:31:55] Yeah. So in the sixties, they were doing some research because it was the sixties. I can only imagine what inspired some of the research, but nonetheless. So when a mom’s breastfeeding a baby, there’s a lot of eye contact there. And we just know bonding is happening and the babies are responding and cooing in those different things. So the researchers asked the mom to break eye contact with the child. So look away, Mom, A couple seconds. One, two, three. I’m gonna look back, make eye contact. But you’re still in the face. Mm hmm. So you’re not connecting. You’re looking at them, but you’re not connecting. You know, happy. You’re not sad. And they want to know what would the newborn do? And it was very disturbing to that, to the newborn. And eventually the newborn would just let it go, but would be agitated. Mm hmm. Didn’t quite know what to do with that, too. This app often came out in 27. 27 now to 2023. This study now has been on large scale because now moms breastfeeding the baby, not just this one time, but over the course of a year possibly, and she’s on her smartphone. And so there’s no eye contact, there’s no bonding. And so what’s happening with this kid over those first two years? And it’s frightening to see what’s happening in it’s correlation to chronic diseases and mental health issues.
Brilliant Miller [00:33:17] Yeah, this and this is exactly I think what Eric Byrne is touching on is he’ll call it stroking that both that happens physically, but it also happens mentally and emotionally. And he’ll say that any interaction between human beings is in some levels it’s a transaction. It’s and if you say hi.
Dean Miles [00:33:34] That’s interesting.
Brilliant Miller [00:33:35] And others say hi, and his term for that is it’s a stroke. I acknowledge you. Okay. Right. And he’ll say, like the quality and the the smoothness of interactions is that people strokes are equivalent, right? So if I say like, Hey, did you look great today, that was probably two strokes because I acknowledge you by Hi, maybe three. I used your name. I gave you a compliment. Right? Right. And if over time you don’t reciprocate, right, then that will deteriorate. It tends to deteriorate my experience of relationship because I’m always giving I’m, you know. Right, right. And I get also I’m hearing my own self-talk that I think we want to reduce something as complex as human interaction to a formula. And it’s not necessarily that simple. But at the same time, I think there’s a lot of there’s a lot of wisdom in this. And when you see that sometimes we’re parenting someone and if they don’t want to be parented right, then that can lead to conflict. Or if we’re childish when someone’s in their adult mode, that can also. Right. But the point where I’m trying to go with this in the structure hunger is he’ll say after that affection, after the stroking, so to speak, happens. What we’re ultimately looking for is structure, right? What do I say after I’ve said hi, after we’ve traded strokes, right. And now it’s like, you know, I love the description. He said my aren’t the walls perpendicular tonight, right. Like we’re looking for something something. And as a side note, I think this is why I’ve loved games for as long as I can remember is that there’s a built in structure for human beings, and coaching provides that same thing. There’s a goal, there’s roles, there’s rules, Right, Right, that kind of thing. But I’m bringing this back to this about helping our clients, helping to be a great coach, helping our clients to achieve their results, have the experience of life they want is when we recognize that humans do have an innate structure, hunger, and we can help satisfy that through doing things.
Dean Miles [00:35:26] That’s really.
Brilliant Miller [00:35:26] Good. When are we going to talk again next? Yeah. Will you make a commitment between now and then or whatever? Yes. That we’re helping to meet a deep human need.
Dean Miles [00:35:35] I like your focus. And you’ve. You’ve. I keep running away from it and you keep bringing me back to it. I’m thinking just an overall commitment to the structure. But you’re. You’re really. You’re really shining a light on the last part of the commitment of When will we meet again? Yeah. Is that what you’re trying to get my attention to?
Brilliant Miller [00:35:55] Well, yeah. I mean, it’s. Is Viktor Frankl right in his book, Man, Search for Meaning? I think his statement is It’s a peculiarity of man that he can only live looking to the future, Right? I mean, we can reminisce and ruminate and all that, but it’s not a recipe for satisfaction. And and we know that people without a reason to live, live shorter lifespans and probably less fulfilling lives.
Dean Miles [00:36:18] Yeah. Brilliant. I mean, so now you’re you’re really reminding me of this. I remember going to my ICF training and they talk about the true value of coaching is not in the coaching moment. It’s in the it’s in the space between this coaching session and the next coaching session. Did you hear did they give you the same dream? I don’t remember that. And it makes sense, right? Because I may I just have 15 minutes or I have 60 minutes with you. Yeah, but now there’s 28 days. There’s 30 more days that have to happen. Yeah, that’s where the value is going to be.
Brilliant Miller [00:36:53] True.
Dean Miles [00:36:55] And so the ICF, or any good coach training will tell you. Now, when you meet back with the client, don’t assume there they are where you left them.
Brilliant Miller [00:37:04] Right.
Dean Miles [00:37:05] They shouldn’t be. If you’re doing this coaching thing, right? Yeah. So it needs to start with so where are you now?
Brilliant Miller [00:37:12] Right.
Dean Miles [00:37:13] I really like that. So back to this brand expectation. My clients know that. Now, I have some clients that. That’s like the fact that this is not about small talk. Mm-hmm. So when they come on the zoom call or we’re live, this isn’t how are the kids and how’s the weather And would you do this weekend? They don’t like it. They’re not good at it. They just want it. They just want to get down to business. But I also have other clients that they need, that they need that transition time. Yeah, because they’ve just come through. Who knows what. And that’s a good reminder, too, of a commitment to. How are you doing? Especially for those who are doing just pure corporate coaching. I don’t know if you just got your butt chewed for the last hour and a half by somebody and now you’re coming into this. I’m expecting you to be vulnerable and transparent and hopeful and future thinking. Right. And you’re still licking your wounds. Yeah. So to allow for that transition to “are you ready to be in the coaching space?”
Brilliant Miller [00:38:16] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:38:18] There’s probably some work for me to go and do and look at the process of our next coaching sessions are scheduled. Always. And we try to get them. We do two-year contracts at a minimum, and we go ahead and schedule out the entire two years. Now, a lot of these guys will flex on it, But but, but, but is already scheduled to. We know that’s going to happen and they know the process. But I think there are some things that we can do to add to this structure hunger.
Brilliant Miller [00:38:52] Structure Hunger.
Dean Miles [00:38:53] Structure Hunger. That’s really fascinating.
Brilliant Miller [00:38:55] Yeah. Interesting, huh?
Dean Miles [00:38:56] Remind us, like, where do we find that? Is that a book?
Brilliant Miller [00:38:59] Yeah, it’s a book. That was. I think it was written in the, if it wasn’t the seventies, it was the eighties.
Dean Miles [00:39:03] So maybe we can put a link below to the Amazon or something. Yeah. Yeah. I agree.
Brilliant Miller [00:39:09] I think it sold like, 5 million copies. So there was a time when it was especially like in therapy and self-help circles, it was kind of a kind of a big thing. Okay, let’s talk about our last subject.
Dean Miles [00:39:20] Okay.
Brilliant Miller [00:39:20] Our last subject is something that can help coaches to earn recognition and money. And what I want to talk with you about today is about substack and about newsletters, if that’s the right term, and about writing as a way of demonstrating your thought leadership, developing your ideas, serving others. Because I know this is something you’ve been doing recently, so. Tell me about that.
Dean Miles [00:39:44] Yeah, it sounds just so easy. It’s so obvious. Newsletters, a new concept, and their 17 years average points been around. We’ve never done a newsletter. I’ve been curious about the longer form because LinkedIn doesn’t really I put long form on there and people don’t read it. I mean, they don’t even like it. You know, do you even the effort to hit the thumbs-up button. So that wasn’t the right format to do that. Substack I kept, well, let me go this way. People that I admire, respect, and they’re successful. Are in the newsletter game. Again, a lot of them were doing this, and as in the eighties. I mean, that really was the communication way to do it then. So I’m watching them and it’s okay. So last episode, you challenged me to a creative brief. I’d already started the newsletter, but then my business partner and I then went through a creative brief discussing where we were on it. So we’re still kind of AB testing. The content we’re putting on Substack as a newsletter. But then LinkedIn also has its own newsletter type form. Hmm. Did you know that?
Brilliant Miller [00:41:00] No.
Dean Miles [00:41:01] Yeah. So you can do a post, but then you could also do a newsletter on LinkedIn. Now, some of our listeners may know how to link those two things together. I don’t know. So I do one in Substack and I do the same one on LinkedIn as a newsletter. Their name the same thing. They do look the same, but they’re two different platforms. And so I’m trying to see who gets engaged with more. At this point, LinkedIn is winning. Really? Yeah. And I don’t know why. I get some theories, but I don’t really know why. But the content is. Here’s what I’m finding, the feedback I’m getting from clients that will use some of my content if it was just on LinkedIn. There’s a perceived value of the content. If they were to tell their team, Hey, I saw this on LinkedIn. Mm-hmm. As opposed to I was reading this in a newsletter. I don’t know why we perceive value on different mediums.
Brilliant Miller [00:42:03] This is Marshall McLuhan, the great communications theorist that the medium is the message. So where you read it, whether it’s printed or digital, like all that is part of the communication I like.
Dean Miles [00:42:14] That makes sense to me because if I read something on Reddit versus I read it in The New Yorker, just everybody was the same thing is different. You’re going to listen with a higher level of intentionality or perceived credibility. So that’s where I’m already seeing a difference. I will get a text message or I’ll have a coaching session and they’ll say, Hey, the article you had in your newsletter. I brought that to my team. We brought that to our board. I don’t think they would have printed out my LinkedIn post.
Brilliant Miller [00:42:46] Yeah. What are your goals for your newsletter?
Dean Miles [00:42:50] Boy, that’s a great question. One of them. One where you just have content. They’re just things that we think about that we know would add value. Mm-hmm. Well, never thought I saw probably this weekend. I saw this on Twitter and someone made a point. If you already have a lot of content that you’ve written. In things like medium or just other blog post. You need to go create new content, take that content, maybe update it for relevancy or, you know, more timely and put it in a newsletter form and you’re it will be received probably better than it was the first time and you just save yourself a bunch of time now I was like why? And that’s a great challenge. Yeah, I want to go back and pick some of my favorite things that either I or some of my team have written over the last 17 years. Yeah, repurpose that for a newsletter. So one of them is we talk a lot about this brilliant of two things that have to be put, have to be possible to be a great coach and to make money. You first you have to be competent. Yeah. And then second, you to be known as competent.
Brilliant Miller [00:44:04] Right.
Dean Miles [00:44:05] The goal of the newsletter is to help us be known as competent. Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:44:11] Yeah, absolutely. To demonstrate the thought leadership that we have. Right. And ultimately. Have people know, like, and trust us. Right. Because without that, it’s like, how do you pick a realtor? Right. It’s always word of mouth, someone you know. Exactly right. Right. Coaches are really a lot the same way. I mean, you might Google somebody, but if you’re not seeing something that’s giving you that, that’s endowing them with credibility and affinity.
Dean Miles [00:44:39] Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:44:40] Why would they pick you? Why would they ever pick you, you know?
Dean Miles [00:44:45] Yeah. You’re just you’re trying to increase the probability or your chance for luck. Yeah, in one sense, yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:44:53] And yeah, and I like, I like this idea that if you can develop your ideas, you can serve others. Right. Because this can maybe be a little bit of a grandiose thought, but. This. This will outlive us. You know the things we do. They matter more than what the span of time they occupy in our lifetime. Right. Right. You can write something and you know, who knows what will happen in the future on this planet.
Dean Miles [00:45:21] Mark Reiter So a couple of thoughts on this, especially for those that are. You’re not a writer. I don’t consider myself a writer, but mark writer. So using the word writer a lot here. But REIT PR co-wrote all these New York bestsellers with Marshall Goldsmith. He will say the great writing is a result of great thinking, and I really like that. No. But then there’s grammar. So I might have Good thinking.
Brilliant Miller [00:45:55] Yeah, they get English.
Dean Miles [00:45:57] They’re great thinking. I’ve sat with it. I’ve done my research. But where does the comma go? Hmm? Do I have the right transfer? Is. I’m looking at the camera here. Invest in things like grammarly. It’ll boost your confidence. Because, one, it’s in real-time. It’ll start giving you suggestions. I’m a slow learner, but you keep showing me the same thing over and over again. I get it. Yeah. And then it’ll give you reports of how many corrections does it make? I got good news. It’s correcting less of mine. Over the last two years I’ve been writing more intentionally. And then use A.I. to help you get started. So I will put into. So whether it’s Google, Bartz, or GPT. Here are my thoughts. Help create my outline based on these things that I’ve been thinking about. Hmm. And then we’ll put it in somewhat of a logical order that I don’t have that ability. Now, from that outline, now I start writing and Grammarly is like a comma goes here. Thank you. Oh, there should be a new sentence. Thank you. And it increases my confidence to hit publish. Sure. Because if you take me back five years ago, Brilliant had all kinds of ideas. I just like the confidence to put it out there because I was convinced that everyone would be laughing at me. Hmm. Seriously?
Brilliant Miller [00:47:22] Oh. And how’s it been?
Dean Miles [00:47:26] If you’re laughing at me, please don’t tell me how I feel. Well, it’s been. It’s been really fantastic. And I’m getting I’ve been getting a lot of feedback of how are you doing this? How are you? You know, did you hire somebody? Is someone creating this for you? And it’s what I’m encouraging then is you have as many thoughts as I do. I’m using some new tools to help me organize them, and then I’m using tools to help me with this, the grammar structure so that it’s good. It’s it’s not a distraction. Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:47:58] That’s awesome. And the last thing that I want to touch on in this part of the conversation is this idea that although some of like a newsletter, we could go, Oh, that’s outmoded, or nobody does that anymore, which we know isn’t true. A lot of people do.
Dean Miles [00:48:11] They do.
Brilliant Miller [00:48:12] Two thoughts. One is that, you know, the algorithms on all these social media platforms will change forever. So true. And on those like we might be connected with the people that we’re connected with, but we don’t own that relationship. Right? Right. Facebook does or LinkedIn does. But when you have an email list, yes, you have a direct connection with that person and nobody’s going to change that algorithm. Email delivery and so forth is a different matter. But.
Dean Miles [00:48:39] Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:48:40] You know, if they know you that IQ, they trust you, they want to hear from you. That’s that’s a huge leg up. The other thing I’m thinking about, just thinking about Tucker Max, who wrote a book, became a New York Times best seller, and he talked about part of his effort was to build relationships, to deliver value to people before he ever tried to sell him anything by sharing his writing regularly. And then when he launched his book, he sold five or 10,000 copies, a lot of copies.
Dean Miles [00:49:10] He did.
Brilliant Miller [00:49:10] To people on his email list. It was pretty amazing. So I just wanted to.
Dean Miles [00:49:15] Yeah, I mean, I’ve heard about this well over a decade of the the wisdom of building out a mail this. On a scale of 1 to 10 of doing my best, I’ll give myself a three.
Brilliant Miller [00:49:34] Hmm.
Dean Miles [00:49:38] I’ve got some hang ups on that of spam mail. I’ve got my own internal dialog of what I don’t like about it, but I’m getting closer to when there is a genuine relationship that’s formed and value the strokes that are going back and forth. There’s something about building your own mail, less email, less versus go and buying one car. And that’s that’s the difference. This is a good challenge for me now.
Brilliant Miller [00:50:07] Well, and to keep it relationship oriented and not just transactional rights, that you’re not trying to exploit this or maximize it per se, if it’s coming from a place of service orientation or generosity or just sharing or self-expression, that’s different from, well, let me see how I can monetize every name on my list. Right, so, well, I appreciate you sharing with me what your experience has been. And as we continue this podcast over the subsequent months, I’d love to see what we can do to raise that from a three to at least a 14.
Dean Miles [00:50:43] I think I can. I think I can do that. I think even talking about it gets me to a four. What I like the difference of I can start doing my best right away. Sure. Now the outcome, that’s the part you have to be patient with. And that’s where I can work. When I started the Substack, you asked me, I mean, at the very beginning. How’s that going? Yeah. And as I reflect, I thought my answer was telling because I was I didn’t know what content and I didn’t talk about all these other aspects that I’ve been learning. I gave you my how many subscribers I have.
Brilliant Miller [00:51:17] Mmhmm.
Dean Miles [00:51:18] So I think it was after the first month, month and a half, we had almost 1000 subscribers. And you’re like, What?
Brilliant Miller [00:51:24] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:51:25] And I’ve got those email addresses now.
Brilliant Miller [00:51:28] That’s awesome. That’s awesome. I think it was. I had a golf lesson recently, and I think it was the instructor who said, we control starting, stopping and trying, but we don’t control the result. So true, so, so true.
Brilliant Miller [00:51:44] That that’s probably relevant for building a list. Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:51:48] Or you just got to start, right? It’s a start.
Brilliant Miller [00:51:50] That’s right. Okay. Well, Dean, thank you for joining me for another episode. It’s been fun to be here together with you in person.
Dean Miles [00:51:57] Yeah, it’s so true. And I’m looking forward to our golf game tomorrow and doing push-ups by push-ups. You’re done.
Brilliant Miller [00:52:04] You think so? What? What final words do you want to leave people listening and watching with.
Dean Miles [00:52:13] To see is kind of my mind. I like the reminder of the commitment of when are we going to reconnect together as a client. Or as a coach to a client? I think there’s a commitment to what your brand of what what is your process of being coach? How do you start? What’s your model and how do you end? And then I’m also just thinking about this listening to myself. Find your confidence and find tools to increase your confidence so you can put yourself out there so people can find you. But it’s intimidating when you’re all alone creating this content and they hit that big publish button.
Brilliant Miller [00:52:53] Yeah.
Dean Miles [00:52:53] Yeah, it intimidated me. It still intimidates me.
Brilliant Miller [00:52:57] While you’re doing it.
Dean Miles [00:52:59] I am indeed. What about you? Last thoughts?
Brilliant Miller [00:53:06] You know, my thoughts are about how we each know what’s right for us. I think it’s not always easy to discern, but we know what’s connected closely to that. For me, it is the power of sleep. And this is something I heard in a conversation with Deepak Chopra, where he said that dynamic activity is a function of depression, and depression as a function of dynamic activity. And I just think about maybe I’m not getting as much depressed as I could or I want to. But my sense in connecting those is I think it’s easier to know our truth or to have the courage to follow it when we are rested. It’s not the obvious place to go. Right. But I think. Right. That’s what comes up for me is like last word. So just an admonition and encouragement for anybody listening to get some rest.
Dean Miles [00:54:04] I can give a turn on that.
Brilliant Miller [00:54:06] All right.
Dean Miles [00:54:07] Best effort for sure.
Brilliant Miller [00:54:07] Okay, well, then we’ll talk again in a couple of weeks.
Dean Miles [00:54:10] All right. Thanks.
Brilliant Miller [00:54:11] Thank you.
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