The Top 10 Business Coaches and Mastermind Groups to Help You Grow Your Small Business

Samir Sampat

Small businesses are the backbone of America. They make up a significant portion of the business world and thanks to the Internet, they are only continuing to grow and expand. Of course, because it’s such a competitive market these days, you’ve got to be on top of things if you’re going to succeed in small business, or any kind of business for that matter. 

While there’s a lot that you can do to prepare and educate yourself along the way, one of the best options is to seek the expertise of those who have come before you. We’re referring, of course, to hiring a business coach or using a coaching group to improve your SMB’s growth and profits. 

There are several perks to hiring a business coach, since they can afford your business many perks. From helping you set goals to creating a targeted marketing strategy, they’ll show you how to get results and grow your business faster. Having their inside experience can take you further and keep you from becoming another one of the 90-some-odd percent of small businesses that fail within the first few years. 

Business coaches teach hard skills, but a lot of them also focus heavily of soft skills like thought leadership, mentality changes, and how to embrace the idea of building a successful business. After all, a large part of success is in your mentality and the confidence that you have in yourself and your company to succeed. Business coaches can do a lot to help with that. 


Small business by the numbers


If you’re still not sure that you should hire a business coach for your small business, consider the following statistics:

  • 90% of all small businesses fail
  • Almost 70% of all businesses are started in homes
  • The businesses classified as “small”, having less than 500 employees, make up 99% of the businesses in the U.S. 
  • Only 40% of all small businesses are profitable
  • As many as 30% will continue to lose profits without intervention
  • 81% of small business owners work overtime and have a limited work/life balance

Starting a business isn’t easy. The numbers aren’t made up and you can’t get any clearer—it's going to take a lot of work to build a successful company. Of course, it’s also going to be a matter of using the resources that you’ve been given so that you can maximize your success with minimal effort on your part. 


Choosing a coach for your small business


There are several factors that go into finding the right business coach. Although we touched on them briefly above, let’s go into a little more detail on what to look for:

Years of Experience

Coaches should have plenty of experience, not just in coaching and training, but in actually running and building successful businesses. After all, you’re not going to get the best advice from someone who has never done it before. They don’t have to have decades of expertise, but make sure they’ve been around the block a few times. 

Areas of Expertise

Depending on your small business, you might want to hire a coach that specializes in one area or another. If that’s the case, consider the focus of the coaches on the list below. For example, some focus on small business while others may specialize in a specific industry or type of business. Still more might specialize in their methods, such as marketing techniques and growth strategies. Find what fits your needs. 

The Right Resources

Everyone has different coaching and training needs. It goes without saying, for the most part, that you should look for a coaching solution that has the materials or training support that you want. You will see on the list below that most coaches offer an array of options and resources, but you still need to make sure that you find the ones that suit your needs. 

Communication and Chemistry

Is the coach someone that you can talk to and work with? You should be able to get a consultation to get a feel for how well you will get along. If the chemistry just isn’t there or you feel like you can’t communicate openly with someone, they’re probably not going to be a good choice as a coach. 


The top 10 business coaches for small business 


  1. Melinda Emerson

Melinda Emerson is our first pick because she’s known as the SmallBizLady, and has helped several companies over the years get off the ground, find the growth they want, and develop better plans for success. She has worked with the likes of Sam’s Club, American Express, and even Staples, but today she focuses on helping the “little guy”. She focuses on marketing execution and engagement strategies that get results, along with global insights that can help you keep up with the ever-changing business world. The website offers a blog, videos, and other resources, and Melinda has more than 15 years of experience behind her one-on-one coaching and consulting solutions. 


  1. Paul Lemberg

Paul Lemberg is all about the profits. He even has a promise to accelerate your revenues and profits within six months and will provide a variety of coaching solutions for your small business. He focuses on creating a custom plan to build a successful business and finding the issues that your company faces so that you can fix the major roadblocks first and foremost. He has helped find millions in profits for hundreds of different companies, and has books, articles, videos, and other resources available to those who want them. You can choose to sign up for one-on-one coaching or group training that’s offered by Paul, who is always available for his clients. 


  1. Jay Abraham

Jay Abraham has coached more than 10,000 clients in his years of business coaching. He’s also got decades of his own business experience under his belt and he’s the founder and CEO of the Abraham Group. He is one of the most well-known business coaches in the industry today and he takes a unique approach, suggesting that people acquire and read his books and written materials, and then sign up for a one-on-one coaching program so that he can apply the things you’ve taken in throughout the books. He offers a variety of solutions and even has online courses, blogs, and videos to help you stay informed and learn more about being a better small business owner. 


  1. Vanguard Business Coaching

Founded by Andy Turner, Vanguard Business Coaching is backed by more than 20 years of experience in sales and business, along with the coaching expertise of one of the originals. He has been coaching and consulting for decades and started his own company to help organizations find and fix their weak spots. He also helps them come up with strategies for overcoming those weaknesses and works through all kinds of mediums. He offers one-on-one coaching and group training sessions, online courses, and plenty of other useful resources that you can explore. When you sign up, you’ll be paired with a coach based on your input to ensure that you get the ideal match. 


  1. Matt Ward

Matt Ward is your man if you are in the business of online sales or Internet business of some kind. He is an expert in things like AI, space, and virtual/augmented reality, but he’s also quite the business maven. Especially when it comes to embracing AI and automation, Matt Ward offers several strategies and coaching solutions that can help you change the path of your small business and build a more successful future. He focuses on hacking the system to find unique streams of revenue for profit increases and reduced costs. He's started several 7-figure companies and has been consulting for a number of years. You'll find a blog on the website, as well as videos and other reference tools, and the chance to sign up for one-on-one coaching sessions. 


  1. Tommi Wolfe

Tommi Wolfe, the original Startup Expert, is here to help small businesses get things off the ground and take them to the next level at the same time. She understands how to build businesses, having built many successes (and some failures!) herself, and she specializes in marketing and helping to structure your business in a way that leads to success. Tommi has one-on-one coaching programs available, along with online resources, videos, books, and events where she speaks on startups, marketing, and other topics. Her main focus is on creating sustainable, competitive companies that stand out from the rest by jumpstarting their success. 


  1. Ravi Raman

Ravi Raman is a business whiz and professional coach that will change the way you think about business. Raman spent years climbing the corporate ladder and being promoted to various positions, including CEO, before deciding to strike out on his own and become an entrepreneur. He created his own business and career, and now he uses those to teach others how to build their own small business that will afford them the opportunity to live the life they have always wanted. Ravi attributes his own success to working with coaches and wants to help other businesses in the same way by harnessing their true potential. 


  1. Dale Carnegie Training

The Dale Carnegie Training program is modeled after the methods and sales tactics of Carnegie himself. The program has been around for decades, and it offers a connection for coaches, consultants, and business owners to build strategies and grow businesses faster and easier than ever before. The program, like several coaching solutions, focuses a lot on soft skills like confidence, mentality switches, and thought leadership, but there is also training available for sales, client relationships, and more. Online courses are available, along with tons of free online resources, and one-on-one coaching can be provided by request. 


  1. Coachfirm

The Coachfirm family is all about helping the modern small business succeed. They offer general business coaching and niche coaching for a variety of markets, giving you plenty of options when you are in the market for coaching resources. They are especially good at helping online companies and Internet businesses because they love AI and software solutions that help propel businesses forward without a huge investment. You will find coaches from all walks of life and a solution that’s tailored to the small business, giving you the chance for one-on-one coaching like the “big guys” get, without the big price tag. 


  1. ActionCOACH

Another coaching group, ActionCOACH was founded in 1993 by Brad Sugars, one of the originals in the world of business coaching. It remains one of the best coaching organizations available today and offers coaching centers all over the world to assist businesses of all kinds, with a special focus on the small business. The ActionCOACH team helps companies blaze new trails and offers innovative solutions to the modern small business. You'll be able to be matched with a coach that fits your needs, and you’ll trust you’re choosing a good program with this one. The goal is to have a “coach in every business” and Sugars is helping do that with a dedicated team of experts to assist businesses around the world. 


Speaking of assistance, ask how Smith.ai can help you change your business for the better


At Smith.ai, our dedicated receptionists understand what it takes to help you streamline communications and take care of customer needs. Our virtual receptionists can provide a custom solution to help you manage everything from live website chat to after-hours phone calls, scheduling and lead intake, and so much more. We’ll help you craft the perfect strategy to manage it all, too, so that you don’t have to worry about a thing. 

What's more profitable than making a partnership like this that virtually cuts your operating costs and daily admin tasks to nearly nothing? We'll handle as much or as little as you choose and integrate with your CRM and other tools so that we can keep you in the loop every step of the way. 

If you want to learn more, schedule a consultation to discuss our 24/7 virtual receptionists and the solutions we can deliver for your small business, including Facebook and SMS messaging, live website chat, after-hours answering, and so much more. You can also find us at hello@smith.ai or (650) 727-6484. 


Samir Sampat

Samir Sampat is a Marketing and Events Associate with Smith.ai. He has experience working with businesses of all sizes focusing on marketing, communications, and business development.

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