A clear vision. It’s imperative that you know where you want to go and you have an action plan on how to make that happen. You have to be able to align everything that you do and everything that you choose to become in the process with the vision that you have for yourself and your practice. In my case, I have always wanted to coach internationally so all of my actions are geared towards building a world-class coaching brand that will resonate well with the international market across multimedia platforms.
The coaching industry is now tremendous. It is a 15 billion dollar industry. Many professionals have left their office jobs to become highly successful coaches. At the same time, not everyone who starts a coaching business sees success. What does someone starting a career as a life coach, wellness coach, or business coach need to know to turn it into a very successful and rewarding career?
In this interview series, called “Five Things You Need To Create a Highly Successful Career As a Life or Business Coach” we are interviewing experienced and successful life coaches, wellness coaches, fitness coaches, business and executive coaches and other forms of coaches who share the strategies you need to create a successful career as a life or business coach.
In this particular interview, we had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Myke Celis.
Myke Celis is a Global Master Coach and the international best selling author of the #bestmeever book series. He’s a personal coach to a number of celebrities, top executives and a number of highly successful people worldwide. On the side, he is a part-time radio talk show and podcast host, a TEDx speaker and a subject matter expert / resource person for coaching for various local and international media platforms.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and what brought you to this particular career path?
Well 5 years ago, after spending 15 years in the marketing and advertising industry as an executive, I had a change of heart. What is interesting to note was that apart from the burnout brought about by the cut throat industry I was in, it was also during that time I found myself at the lowest point in my life when a friend of mine betrayed me and left me almost bankrupt and I was miserable back then in the physically abusive relationship I had. My success then felt meaningless and empty. I remember asking myself then what I wanted to do over and over again for the rest of my life that will make me feel happy, complete and fulfilled even if I am not paid. And my answer was to speak to inspire. I found that beautiful experience I was looking for in coaching as I help people become self-empowered and discover their own #bestmeever. And today, looking back, it was one of the best decisions I made in my life: to allow myself to start all over again and live my dreams.
You are a successful business leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?
I fully resonate with this question. I think the three character traits that I had which helped me the most are the following:
- Authenticity — when I actually embraced myself whole and loved myself fully, I allowed myself to pursue my dreams of becoming a Global Master Coach without the fear of judgment from others. You see, in the Philippines, during that time, there was no gay life coach fully visible in the mainstream media, which was commonly dominated by men. I became the disruptor in the industry, being the first ever openly gay professional life coach to co-host radio programs and become a subject matter expert /resource person in coaching while coaching was still in its infancy stages then here in the Philippines. It was also what made me stand out each and every time I gave a TEDx talk and whenever I got invited to speak or mentor abroad. What worked for me was that people loved the way I was presenting myself: consistently, focused, no holds barred, unapologetic, straight forward and lovingly sincere and true: the core essence of what my brand, #bestmeever , is all about.
- Flexibility — things don’t always go as planned and what helped me survive and thrive in this industry is my ability to adjust accordingly. Part of this is being able to let go of what I can’t control and focusing on what is still workable so I can go (and grow) with the flow of things. The COVID19 Pandemic is my perfect example for this one because before, I used to be more comfortable doing face to face sessions and giving live workshops and talks. I allowed myself to embrace the new normal and the new technologies which can help me deliver the same, if not greater, results during trying times. And yes, now, I am very much comfortable with virtual coaching and delivering webinars left and right. No more online fatigue. Haha!
- Positivity — Oftentimes, I am told by people that I am like a ray of sunshine in their lives as I always have a smile on my face and I consciously choose to see the silver linings in each and every experience. Having a positive mindset allows me to keep moving forward without fear or resistance as I open myself up to greater possibilities in the process. My mantra ever since was: there’s no harm in trying and I would rather have more “oh well’s” than “what if’s”. This is what kept me going when I was still starting out and trying to penetrate the international scene, starting of as a coach, then becoming a TEDx speaker and then as a regional columnist/contributor for various global thought leadership websites. And yes, I’m glad I held on to hope or else I would have never experienced this kind of growth I am enjoying now.
How have habits played a role in your success? Can you share some success habits that have helped you in your journey?
I always start and end my day meditating and writing down on my gratitude journal. I love visualizing how my day would ideally go and I consciously search for and acknowledge blessings, big or small in between. Writing them down at the end of the day as I close my day in prayer and meditation allows me to realize that life is good and I am given more and more reason to carry on every single day, no matter how it went.
I also practice random self-affirmations whenever I see mirrors because doing such grounds and empowers me at the same time. I believe that it will never hurt to remind ourselves too often how amazing we are simply because we deserve it.
This will be intuitive to you but it will be helpful to spell this out directly. Can you help explain a few reasons why it is so important to create good habits? Can you share a story or give some examples?
It’s important to create good habits because they set the tone on how your day can go. They help you create a positive vision, provide you with means to cope and thrive and allow you to appreciate your journey more. At the end of the day, based on actual experience, my good habits paved way for my own success because they inspired me to push forward when things were tough. I remember during the start of the pandemic when I had to close down my restaurant business on top of losing a lot of paid speaking engagements, face to face coaching clients and workshops to be facilitated. I saw myself in a dark space then initially and spent the next twenty days reflecting and recalibrating as I counted my blessings. And by practicing gratitude, positive thinking and self-affirmations consistently, I found myself inspired enough to write a book, which ended up to be an international best selling title. And that opened more doors for me globally as I got signed up by even more clients who have seen me thrive despite the uncertainties. Never underestimate the value of good habits, I always say.
Speaking in general, what is the best way to develop good habits? Conversely, how can one stop bad habits?
The first thing to do is become self-aware first. Meaning you have to inquire within and reflect: what habits do you presently have and which ones work and which ones do not. Remain objective all through out and analyze the benefits you get from subscribing to them. Next, identify your goal and the desired behavior you want to put in place. Know your reasons why you want to achieve your goal and align the necessary good habits that will bring you closer to it. This also includes the process of eliminating habits which no longer serve you well. To make it easier for you to let go, consider reflecting on the price you have to pay each time you give in to your bad habits. It’s all about asking yourself “what kind of habits do I need here and now to allow me to achieve my goals faster and easier?”
Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does that resonate with you so much?
I can actually share a bunch because my #bestmeever books are filled with those! But kidding aside, I think one quote that is closest to my heart is “ If you’re not open to change, make sure you don’t complain.” Change is inevitable and plays a big role in the pursuit of one’s goals. I believe it speaks so much about humility and openness, both of which are needed in one’s journey towards becoming one’s best. I have always been an advocate of becoming comfortable with the uncomfortable so one can fully maximize his/her own growth in the process. At the end of the day, complaining won’t get you far; acting on things in alignment with change, will lead you closer to your goals.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?
Still coaching a bunch of people under my signature #bestmeever coaching program. So happy to have new clients from all over the world onboard.
I am currently working on a new book under a new publisher which signed me up recently, something which is tentatively launching late October or early November this year. I can’t disclose full details yet but I can guarantee that it’s something worth waiting for, much like the other books in my #bestmeever series.
I am also in the middle of conducting my first accelerated group coach mentorship program of which I have 10 mentees who are embarking on their journey to become amazing professional coaches. I am so happy with their growth indeed in the last few weeks.
Apart from my recent collaborations with global brands such as Jooble and Bespoke Diaries, I am also busy recording the second season of my podcast, #bestmeever Podcast By Coach Myke Celis featuring global thought leaders and influencers.
I can see all these inspiring people to become their own #bestmeever, whatever that might look like for them. I’d like to be a living testament of someone who lives his dream unapologetically so others can follow suit.
Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. Many coaches are successful, but some are not very successful. From your experience or perspective, what are the main factors that distinguish successful coaches from unsuccessful ones? What are your “Five Things You Need To Create a Highly Successful Career As a Life or Business Coach”? If you can, please share a story or an example for each.
I’d be speaking based on actual experience.
- A clear vision. It’s imperative that you know where you want to go and you have an action plan on how to make that happen. You have to be able to align everything that you do and everything that you choose to become in the process with the vision that you have for yourself and your practice. In my case, I have always wanted to coach internationally so all of my actions are geared towards building a world-class coaching brand that will resonate well with the international market across multimedia platforms
- An authentic coaching brand — you are your brand. And it must be grounded on your personal truth and your experiences. Having a highly relatable brand will allow you to resonate well more with your target market. What is key is that you know what you represent, who your market is and how you’re making yourself attractive to them, based on the image you project and the results you deliver. Consistency is a must. My brand, #bestmeever , has reached that global appeal because it focused on what I truly embody: an authentic, unapologetic, grandest version of myself — the same thing I help my coaches discover in their own journey, whatever that may look like for them.
- An efficient and effective coaching program — it’s not just about having the right credentials or the buzz that you create for yourself and your brand. Your coaching program must be tailor-fitted specifically to the market you intend to serve and results must be consistently commendable. This can be done by strategically crafting a program deep rooted in the utmost understanding of your desired customer’s insights and behaviors. Remember, it’s not about the number of offers you have every now and then; it’s about how strong and appealing your signature program is.
- Strong Online Presence — Turn google into your best friend and work on your SEO. Make sure that when your prospective client googles your name, he/she will be impressed by what appears, if any at all. Maximize your social media platforms and engage actively in the digital space by creating relevant content and articles which you can publish in global websites. Speaking in reputable summits and building yourself as a thought leader or subject matter expert can also help you improve your visibility. Remember: no matter how good you are as a coach, you won’t get hired if people don’t know about you. For me, my website, www.coach-mykecelis.com has all the details about my work, the brands I have collaborated with and the media features I had. I normally ask during interviews to provide a backlink for my site so that people will be re-directed to my web page which contains my credentials. I also make sure I promote my social media properties each and every time I get invited to guest or speak anywhere in the world to amplify my reach.
- Client Testimonials — it’s all about having happy, highly satisfied clients who will be willing to vouch for you and your services at the end of the day. The more high profile your client is, the better because it adds to your credibility. However, don’t discount the fact in the value each and every positive review you get, regardless of whom it’s from. Word of mouth is still the best form of marketing and allow your work to do the talking. In my case now, I get referrals every now and then from previous and existing clients who have been very happy with my coaching services. More than the new clients I get in the process, it’s more of seeing the impact I had on their lives that I value more because it makes my heart overflow.
What are the most common mistakes you have seen coaches make when they start their business? What can be done to avoid those errors?
I always tell my coach mentees not to fake it. I am a firm believer that in coaching, you can’t fake it till you make it. Don’t overpromise. Don’t plagiarize. Don’t settle in providing programs that are merely copy-pasted and renamed. Don’t pretend to be an expert in something you are not or try to be the kind of coach everyone expects you to be. At the end of the day, the truth will come out and your results will speak of your work and your true value. Never compromise your integrity just to look good in the eyes of others.
What aspiring coaches can do is to allow themselves to think big and then start small. Be patient in working your way up and in finding out the space you really want to occupy in the industry. Practice coaching diligently, create your own program, be your own brand. That’s the best way you can own your practice eventually and make a name for yourself.
Based on your experience and success, what are a few of the most important things a coach should know in order to create a Wow! Customer Experience? Please share a story or an example for each.
Based on my experience, what my clients like about me is that I offer a highly personalized service. I answer their queries by myself and I honor our relationship. I make sure that I become their ideal accountability partner so that they will be able to reach the goals that they set. I walk the talk. They also love the fact that I am very honest and consistent in my words and actions, something which, for them, hard to find nowadays, the very reason they feel very at ease with me since day one. And one thing about me, long after our coaching engagement is over, I still allow myself to nurture our relationship as friends because for me, it’s never just about the money — it’s all about creating lasting bonds with people from all over the world who aspire to become their own #bestmeever .
Lead generation is one of the most important aspects of any business, and particularly in coaching. What are the best ways for a coach to find customers? Can you share some of the strategies you use to generate good, qualified leads?
Make yourself visible and likeable. I get most of my clients from my talks, my media guesting’s and interviews and those who follow me on social media. Don’t aim to impress, instead, aim to create an impact by utilizing what resources and opportunities you have that are true to you and your brand. By consistently doing this, you allow yourself to attract the right people in your space.
Coaches are similar to startup founders who often work extremely long hours and it’s easy to end up burning the candle at both ends. What would you recommend to your fellow coaches about how to best take care of their physical and mental wellness when starting their business?
Dream big and start small. Allow yourself to journey at your own pace in your own space. Don’t pressure yourself too much. Create mini milestones and celebrate whenever you reach them. Do what you can with all that you have and that will be more than enough. At the end of the day, when the going gets tough, remember why you started and recognize how far you’ve gone. Oh and yes, allow yourself to rest and recalibrate guilt-free, because you deserve it.
You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
I think I have already started on that: my call for everyone to discover and be their own #bestmeever , no matter what that may look for them. I put up my own #bestmeever self-empowerment community on Facebook to help people do just that. Also, I initiated the formation of the Global Coaching Circle, another FB community that focuses on helping aspiring coaches develop their own practice, professionally while providing knowledge and trainings for free.
We are blessed that some very prominent names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them.
I would definitely want to have a breakfast with Tony Robbins, Lunch with Ellen De Genres and Dinner with Oprah, because they have been my inspiration when I was starting my practice as a coach, and now as I expand my practice globally. I want to thank them personally and ask for guidance. That will be life changing for me.
P.S. if there’s room for snacks, please include Jack Canfield and Ru Paul please. I love Chicken Soup for the Soul and I am a huge fan of Ru Paul’s Dragrace. It’s a dream of mine to be a guest judge to support my LGBTQ+ family.
How can our readers further follow your work online?
Well, they can visit www.coach-mykecelis.com or find me through the following links:
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success and good health!