You must always be launching something new. Every post, video, call, etc. should have a call to action of how people can get involved in what you offer. If you do not have offerings, there is impact and income being left on the table. I’ve launched 50 different online experiences in three and a half years, some have been repeats, some were one-time offers, and some are assets on my website. This is largely why I’ve created such a large community and a multiple six figure business in such a short time online. Create new value constantly!
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 Colleen Gallagher.
Colleen Gallagher is an intuitive business and personal development consultant, author of several books including her latest release An Uncompromised Life, survivor of childhood cancer and currently pursuing her Ph.D is Psychology with a focus on Global Leadership and Change. Her greatest success is seeing her clients fall in love with life by overcoming trauma and life challenges to create a lifestyle career that impacts the world. Colleen empowers leaders and businesses to come to a newfound clarity of their mission, so that they can better understand their gifts while taking calculated action to grow their businesses.
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?
At age 14, I was running down the basketball court for a layup, and suddenly, I fell and could not breathe. I went to the hospital, and learned that I had a significantly enlarged right thyroid and would need surgery to determine if it was cancer. Once I had the surgery, I would be on medication, one pill a day, for the rest of my life, and if I ever wanted to become pregnant, I would need to readjust my medication. It did turn out to be cancer, and while I was fortunate enough to beat it, but there was a lot of trauma in the process.
Spending so much time in hospitals, I saw the financial issues placed on families with sick children. This inspired me to start a career in sales because I knew I would be able to make enough money so it would never be an issue if I faced similar circumstances later in life. I found myself in a successful corporate sales career which I quickly realized was not allowing me to live my true purpose. I had everything I ever wanted material-wise, but on the inside I was empty. Because I saw so many children die of cancer, but I survived, I always felt like I was responsible for doing more with my life. I have always loved helping others to shift their mindset and step into their purpose, and I realized I wasn’t doing that for myself. So I left my corporate sales job and moved across the world to New Zealand, where I began my journey to receive clarity on my purpose by doing yoga and meditation four hours a day, for six months. This is how I birthed my online education company Colleen Gallagher International where I empower business leaders and everyday people to offer and create lifestyles people love. I take a holistic approach to coaching people on how to live a sustainably happy, healthy and wealthy life. And I’ve never looked back- now I have a global online brand, over 20 online courses, my Podcast, three books, a crystal line, my oracle deck, my master’s degree and receiving my PhD — all while impacting thousands of people every day.
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?
The three most instrumental character traits that have helped me to build a successful business have been my intuitive nature, a heart for inclusivity and being someone who takes action. I’ve implemented over 25 online courses in three and a half years, and that stems from being an action taker. Anytime I have an idea, I write it down and I act on it. This is how I’ve built such a loyal community and generated multiple six figures in the online world in three and a half years. I am not afraid of taking steps to execute on something I’m passionate about
Separately, my intuitive nature has helped me to build immediate trust with people that are seemingly strangers in the online space because it fosters connection. It has allowed me to be still, to hear the inner voices inside my head communicating about what is occurring when someone is reaching out to me. Then I take action to communicate and/or provide solutions to someone based on what I feel and hear instead of just simple logic. This has left people puzzled at how understood they feel in a short period of time even more so than they are by their immediate family. It empowers me to guide them to meet their impact and income goals. The best story with this is when someone saw that I had a rose quartz crystal necklace on in a photo, I shipped them the necklace, and they said their daughter died two weeks ago and the daughter said she would come back to her in a rose quartz necklace. Meanwhile I chose to let go of my child two weeks before giving her this necklace, so it was a beautiful sign which led me to start my crystal line in business which has helped many people heal from the pain of death.
Lastly, having a heart for inclusivity has allowed me to attract a diverse audience. I have people who are more spiritual, some who are in the corporate world, some who graduated high school, some who are in politics, some who are conspiracy theorists, doctors, men and women ages 22–70, and the list goes on. And yet somehow these people come together and build community together, regardless of their differences. This is because I understand my audience’s deepest desire, which is ultimately to fall in love while creating an impact in this world. That’s our common ground. That’s how I know how to connect with them and then bring them together, so they experience true community. This in turn increases my business, and impacts the lives of others while helping them in their business as well.
How have habits played a role in your success? Can you share some success habits that have helped you in your journey?
Habits have played a massive role in my life and success. One of my most important habits is a commitment to being a lifelong learner and knowing that I don’t know it all. This has allowed me to stay open, to ask silly questions and to be able to grow my business in the way that felt aligned for me. The second habit is journaling every day. Journaling allows us to get the thoughts inside of us out onto paper, so that we can clear our mind. Sometimes these are negative thoughts, sometimes they’re ideas, processes, systems, product creation, names etc. The process of journaling is one of the best ways to clear my mind. I write out beliefs of what I want my life to be, my ideas and dreams. Just putting it on paper helps to move you toward making it a reality. The last habit that has massively helped me is tracking my finances. Every few days I look at my income and assess what is needed to meet my monthly goal. This helps the subconscious mind to take that number into consideration so that everything you’re doing in your businesses will support that. Every post, email, video or piece of communication will then play a part in reaching that goal.
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?
Habits matter. The subconscious mind controls 80% of our thoughts. We have a lot of automatic habits and routines without even thinking about it. Like brushing our teeth, driving cars, answering our phones. Habits run our lives either from a conscious or subconscious state. It’s important to choose your habits otherwise you’re operating in a default state instead of intentionally moving toward a life you want to live. Our thoughts control our actions, and our actions create our habits. It’s crucial that we begin to slow down to hear the thoughts we are allowing inside our head and evaluate if those are thoughts that are empowering or disempowering us to reach our goals. If we don’t slow down to choose and change our thoughts, then our habits will dictate our lives instead of choosing the life we desire to create.
I believe a habit everyone should have is journaling. A lot of us have crazy beliefs about money from what we’ve seen in movies, or we’ve been told we must work hard to earn money. But what if we could choose to receive money by simply being ourselves? What if we could write into existence beliefs around business and money?
When you write what you want out of life, life usually meets you halfway because what you chose to focus on ends up becoming true. This exact habit is how I’ve built followings of over 100,000 people between all platforms, how I’ve written three books, etc. This is the most powerful tool because you become the author of your life instead of life happening to you.
Speaking in general, what is the best way to develop good habits? Conversely, how can one stop bad habits?
The best way to develop good habits and stop bad habits is to have a conversation with yourself, your mind, your heart, your spirit. Ask yourself what is it you want out of this life? The first step is to then listen to the inner voice inside of you. Then begin creating your life and acting towards what you want to experience from this life, whether it’s registering for a course, going back to school, leaving your job to travel the world, starting yoga, etc. Take action and move toward what you want your life to be like. If you are already living the life you want, the question then becomes, “what can I do to scale the lifestyle and business I want to create?” From there, focus on systems and processes. What systems and processes do you already do that are currently working? What can you do to scale those systems and processes? To stop bad habits, we must become committed to feeling good and believing that what we want out of this life is possible. When we do that, the bad habits fall away and are replaced with enhanced habits, allowing us to meet our goals in life. Habits are designed for you to take action to create the life you want, and the best way to do this is to have daily conversations with yourself. Only you know what you want out of this life. We can have mentors and put ourselves in new environments, but you hold the power to create habits that will set you free to live the most incredible career and life.
Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does that resonate with you so much?
“Follow your heart so you can live every moment like it was your last moment.” This became one of my favorite quotes when I had cancer because I was inspired to go out and live my life to the fullest. But I saw so many adults killing themselves in their careers and relationships, and they were never happy. It was the worst thing to witness — to know that you lived a life that was untrue to you. I never want anyone to get to the end of their life and feel as though they truly never gave this life everything they had. We never know when that day will come, but we know that it will. And I want everyone to know that they lived how they wanted to live, with who you wanted to experience life with, and impacted this world the way they believed they could.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?
I’ve created over 25 online courses. I have six physical product creations I’ve brought into the world including my three books and am working toward my Ph.D. Everything I’ve done in my business has impacted tens of thousands of people’s lives through understanding themselves better to obtain self-mastery, people taking control of their own income, learning the digital world to make money online, live a life that creates freedom, feel more connected to their purpose, heal from trauma, heartbreak and diseases. My most exciting project is always whatever I am working on in the present moment because that is all we have. Right now, I’m working on my fourth book, and in the month of August I launched two new online programs, relaunched a previous online course, created my seventh physical product, and am working on my dissertation. Everything I do is designed to help people feel more peace, heal their body or mindset, feel connected to something greater than themselves, or improve their career through financial means.
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.
Successful coaches are those who are in it to guide and empower others to develop themselves, and they embody what they teach. Unsuccessful coaches are the ones who are in it for the money and are repeating things they’ve read in a book vs their own life experience. With that said, here are five things you need to succeed as a life or business coach:
- You must always be launching something new. Every post, video, call, etc. should have a call to action of how people can get involved in what you offer. If you do not have offerings, there is impact and income being left on the table. I’ve launched 50 different online experiences in three and a half years, some have been repeats, some were one-time offers, and some are assets on my website. This is largely why I’ve created such a large community and a multiple six figure business in such a short time online. Create new value constantly!
- Coaches cannot be afraid to charge what they’re worth. People think the more they give away for free, the more people will just happily pay them. This is not true. It has nothing to do with how much you give away for free and everything to do with the value you bring. Do not be afraid to charge money, and say no to things that do not feel aligned for you. People buy from you because of the example you set, not because you submit to their every desire. Charge what aligns with your value.
- Coaches bundle their offerings and list it at multiple price points to fully leverage everything you’ve created and give people more options. With my first book Live Your Truth, I offered a free webinar, a 7 dollars PDF bundle, the book (which was 9 dollars), a self-study six-week course at 197 dollars, the six-week course with one-on-one coaching for 2,500 dollars, and lastly a three-day retreat for 5,000 dollars. I took one product and created multiple offerings so people could receive access to the wisdom I shared in a package that felt right for them. Don’t leave impact or income on the table.
- You must have a digital presence. Especially after the pandemic, if you don’t have a digital presence or a community online, then unfortunately your coaching mission is going to become nonexistent. The digital world and social media are going to become increasingly crucial in your lead generation and extending your customer’s journey with you. This is what allows them to stay connected to you, even if they aren’t currently buying from you. I’ve built my whole business off this, so I’ve met people from other countries, on planes, in coffee shops, and I’ve directed them to my social media so they can stay updated on what I’m doing and offering. This has created a large part of my success.
- Learn how to build a team so you can scale. I see so many coaches working solo, and this limits success. In order to scale, you have to learn how to lead a team. To create a highly successful career as a coach you must have a business that can support you in multiple areas so you can be focused on the development and transformation of other people’s lives. When I started publishing my books, I hired my PR firm to scale the distribution of my message because I know they’re experts at what they do. I was just using social media and through tapping into other forms of distribution I increased my reach, clients, income, and impact that I alone didn’t have access to through my organic social media network. Outsource your weaknesses and focus on your areas of strength.
What are the most common mistakes you have seen coaches make when they start their business? What can be done to avoid those errors?
The biggest mistake I see coaches make is that they are looking around at what everyone else is doing and trying to mimic successful people instead of acting on what they feel called to do. This leads to trying to copy a framework of someone else’s success and that doesn’t work. The most successful businesspeople have been those who followed their heart, trusted their own vision and then acted and the business was a byproduct of that.
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.
I think the most important thing is to be yourself. Your clients buy from you because they want to be more like you. The truer you are to yourself, the more your customers will be blown away. More than anything you represent something they want to own within themselves. When you are more yourself, and your clients get the results they want, the more likely they are to have a WOW customer experience. You’re giving them permission to be who they always wanted to be.
I gifted a woman on a plane my third book. I told her to open it to a random page. She did, and tears flooded down her face. And she read the page, she said, “I thought I was alone in my pain for so long. Thank you.” She ended up following me on social media, and she often shares my posts and has become a client. Because I listened and took action, it gave her an enlightening experience.
Separately, it is important to always cross-sell, upsell your offerings. This way people always have options, and your business is always growing. For example, I have products, online courses, and memberships. At the end of every free post or video, I offer at least one way to be more involved with me, and at the end of every paid experience I sell a way to continue the involvement with their self-education. This creates an invaluable customer experience, so people feel empowered to have the choice to be included or participate in their growth and evolution through what you share.
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?
As I mentioned, social media and a digital presence is the best way to attract customers. There is no cold calling or forcing things. There is simply showing up on a platform that many people are already on, and sharing from your life experience to help other people. For three and a half years, I’ve shown up daily on some platform, whether it’s a post, video, repost, podcast, blog. From this all of my customers have been through the law of attraction via social media and have gotten involved with what I teach to transform their own lives. I would start by choosing one platform and showing up consistently with every post including a call to action. From there, show up on multiple platforms, start a podcast or blog, collaborate with others who have a platform to tap into their communities, and eventually build a website. I have scaled a successful business, but I started with a Facebook post.
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?
I believe to avoid burnout you cannot look at your work as work, but as a lifestyle career. Your work has to be something you would show up and do anyway if no one was around. Until you figure out the thing you would do consistently regardless of who sees it and build your work and career around that, you will always burn out. When you’re forcing yourself to do something for a paycheck or to simply survive, it is like slavery only you’re doing it to yourself.
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. 🙂
The movement I would start in the world is what I call The Intoxicator Movement, where we’re all focused on intoxicating the world with love. An Intoxicator is someone who takes the time to look within — remove the toxicity — and becomes what is left. By letting go of the toxic habits we’ve created, we can begin to accept who we are and intoxicate the world with that instead of the things that hinder us from loving ourselves, loving others, and making this world a better place.
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 think Evan Williams, the former CEO of Twitter, and Medium, would be someone I’d love to have a private breakfast with. As he gets the importance of connecting people through digital platforms, creating a new way to receive news from real people instead of traditional news. He also understands the importance of organic community and how to cultivate it. He has offered people an option to decide how they want to engage with information, share it, and to be their own thought-leaders in creating and designing their lives. I’d like to sit with him and see where he sees the future of digital news and information playing a role in community building and connection as we transition into a technology-focused world.
How can our readers further follow your work online?
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success and good health!