If you have been tempted I am not surprised. The promises all sound very enticing and if you are needing to get your income going you may be feeling pressured.
Here are some reasons why you need to be careful:
The first reason is not always obvious but it is the most important if you are working as a coach. Many of these schemes encourage you to pressure your potential clients and to make big promises that you just won’t be able to keep. This is a dangerous path and could lead you into unethical practice if you are not careful.
I have just seen a segment on day time TV about therapists pressuring clients to film themselves in distress to use as marketing. The clients are offered reduced rates (which in practice were not reduced). They were manipulated with guilt and making use of information shared confidentially.
All of this puts therapists and coaches in a poor light. It reduces confidence and may mean people will not seek support from ethical people like you.
The second reason is obvious but easy to miss if you are desperate. They are using the same tactics with you. Over promising and then once you are hooked you may find yourself spending large sums of money with no return. You may also get sucked into some kind of pyramid scheme that means you find yourself using the same tactics on others.
As a Coach, Trainer and Supervisor with over thirty years of experience let me give you some quick tips:
- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Delete that email, block that post.
- If you want to become a coach and have a day job, keep your day job and build your new business alongside first.
- Join the appropriate professional association and sign up to their ethics agreements (these associations will often have directories where you can be listed too).
- Check out advice from people in marketing with good experience (e.g. have proper marketing qualifications and are members of professional associations). The ethical people will charge reasonable rates and will tell you about the hard work you will need to do.
- Join a support group for your own development and to gain the benefits of peer support.
- Get a mentor, coach or a supervisor to help you individually.
What has been your experience of these get rich quick schemes? What is your experience of working instead with peers and ethical professionals? Do share your stories with me, others may well learn an important lesson that will help them protect themselves.