Barbara Wainwright: “Speaking, becoming an author”

In my course, I teach coaches how to write a vision statement for their clients. The impact is absolutely a “wow” experience and results in great testimonials for the coach. A vision statement helps the client to see themselves being successful. It helps to reprogram the subconscious mind to be in alignment with the creative […]

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In my course, I teach coaches how to write a vision statement for their clients. The impact is absolutely a “wow” experience and results in great testimonials for the coach. A vision statement helps the client to see themselves being successful. It helps to reprogram the subconscious mind to be in alignment with the creative conscious mind which is a key factor in a client’s success.

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 Barbara Wainwright.

Certified Master Life Coach and CEO of Wainwright Global, Barbara Wainwright is known as the most sought-after teacher in the coaching and self-empowerment industry. She is famous for training and certifying over 6,500 professional coaches worldwide since 2006 and for creating the “Wainwright Method of Coaching”, empowering individuals to actualize their life purpose, live inspired lives, and connect with their true passion. Barbara is an international speaker, author, and trainer and now has 3 books available on

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?

I was a software engineer for many years, and owned and ran J.F. Positive Systems from 1985 to 2006. During my consulting years, I read a lot of books and went to classes and seminars on the topics of personal development, spirituality, psychology, metaphysics, and natural healing modalities. For the last 10 years of that time, I had the intuitive push that I was supposed to do something different than developing software. I explored many different avenues and nothing seemed quite right until I discovered the coaching world. I instantly knew that coaching was the path that I had been looking for.

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?

As a software analyst/designer/developer, you need to be able to look at the big picture (the system) and also drill down into the details (bits and bytes). Honestly, I’m not sure how to define those capabilities as a “character trait”, however I know those abilities have served me well in both software and coaching.

I have been told that I am tenacious (definitely a character trait!). Something I noticed about people that have not succeeded is that they start a lot of things, but they don’t finish. I am a “finisher”. I finish what I start.

I believe that my ability to find and nurture talent in others has helped me to be a great leader. Being able to confidently delegate important tasks to others is vital to growing any business. I know how to encourage and motivate others to step into their greatness.

How have habits played a role in your success? Can you share some success habits that have helped you in your journey?

(Mind and Spirit) Meditation: I believe that tapping into your life purpose and staying true to your heart are very important motivators. Meditation helps to clear the minutia from your mind so you can discover and focus on what is most important.

(Body) Exercise: Body movement, whether walking, dancing or exercising; body movement is one of the keys to good health. I make it a habit to take at least a 10-minute walk 3 to 4 times a day.

(Heart) I also do something fun regularly. For instance, recently we took my family on a whale watching trip! Doing something creative feeds my spirit and soul with laughter and joy. I laugh a lot!

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?

To me, having a good habit is a demonstration of the ability to be consistent. When you are consistent and congruent with your actions and words, people can rely on you. It means they can trust that you will show up when you say you will and that you will follow through on what you say. Being trustworthy will bring great rewards in every area of your life.

Pay attention to your language and the phrases that you say. Avoid using the word “try”. When someone tells me they will “try”, typically it means they will not follow through. Avoid generalizations, like “everyone, no one, never, always”. Generalizations are misleading and are used to dissuade or manipulate someone (or yourself) from moving forward. Being specific in your communication with yourself and others will leave little room for your words to be misconstrued. Effective communication is another key to success.

Taking a “time out” daily for contemplation, expressing gratitude for gifts received, reviewing the big picture, ensuring my actions are in alignment with my goals and more importantly with my divine purpose, is a habit that has served me well over the years. Reviewing your day to discern if your actions were on point with your purpose is a personal growth technique that can pave the way for staying in alignment with your calling. Staying in alignment with your calling is a key to both inner and outer success.

Speaking in general, what is the best way to develop good habits? Conversely, how can one stop bad habits?

Dr. Bruce Lipton shared that the best way to create a habit is repetition. If you want to be happy, simply repeat to yourself out loud throughout the day, I’m happy. Do this for 30 days and you will find that you are happy! You might not look happy at the beginning of this exercise. But who are you talking to? You are talking to your subconscious mind. That is where true and permanent change happens. 95% of the day we are acting and thinking from the subconscious mind. If the subconscious mind “gets” I am happy, then you won’t even have to think about it. You will be happy!

For me, to stop a bad habit, I have found it best to replace the bad habit with a good one! Trying to stop a bad habit without a good replacement leaves a void that can pull you back into the unwanted behavior. Also, focusing on the behavior that you do want, rather than putting attention on the behavior you don’t want is very helpful. As Tony Robbins says, energy flows where your attention goes, so focus on good things!

Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does that resonate with you so much?

”The Golden Rule” is one that I live by. Do unto others as you would wish them to do unto you. Be respectable if you want to be respected. If you want to be loved, love yourself so that you generate the capacity to give love.

What goes around comes around. If you are generous with others, others will be generous with you. If you are fair, people will be fair with you. Be compassionate and seek to understand rather than to be understood. As you give, so shall you receive.

Trust is earned. Use discernment when developing relationships. Actions do speak louder than words. Exercise caution, and take your time to get to know someone when forming a new relationship. You can’t truly trust someone until you’ve witnessed them being true to their word.

These reflections resonate with me because they are guidelines to living a good life and having a good conscience. Feeling good about your actions and interactions with others brings peace of mind and heart, and is nourishment for your soul.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?

I am at the precipice of developing a new leadership course that encompasses the acknowledgment of body, mind, spirit, and heart of a company and its employees. How do you develop a business culture that creates a positive return on investment and an environment that employees are drawn to because they feel rewarded, acknowledged, respected, and cared for? I am working with Dr. Paul Rand, author of “Leadership: A Culture”, on this endeavor. His extensive research on the subject and my ability to create engaging, experiential instruction will help leaders to stand tall in their organizations.

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.

To be successful as a coach, whether it’s in business or life coaching, here are some things you can do:

  1. Get formal training — learn a proven system the provides transformation for your clients
  2. Create a great elevator pitch.
  3. Develop enticing coaching packages
  4. Network with other professionals and always ask for referrals
  5. Speaking, becoming an author

1. Get Formal Training: Ask yourself this question. Would you go to a professional that had no formal training?

Having a credential behind your name demonstrates professionalism and competency. If you aren’t willing to invest in yourself, why would a client want to invest with you?

Learning is essential to developing yourself, knowledge, skills, and confidence. In today’s world, getting a credential as a coach doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg and consume 9 months or more of your time. You can earn a credential in 16 hours and your investment will serve you for the rest of your life.

2. Create a Great Elevator Pitch: Your elevator pitch should “speak to your client’s listening” so when they hear it, they identify with it and say “That’s ME! I want and need that help!”.

Your elevator pitch should identify who it is you want to work with, what their struggle is, and the benefit they will receive when they work with you as their coach.

For example: (Who) I teach people who have a passion for helping others, (Struggle) yet don’t have a credential or a professional method to help clients through transformation. (Benefit) Learning a system of coaching will give you the confidence and credibility you need to launch your coaching career and live a lifestyle you love.

Another example: (Who) Are you a woman who’s been feeling depressed, (Struggle) frustrated, or even angry about your current life situation? Are you ready to experience something new and refreshing? My name is Barbara Wainwright and I am a Certified Professional Life Coach. (Benefit) I specialize in helping you go from despair to delightful, as you rediscover your divinity and create your heavenly life. Together we will synergistically design wonderful, positive life changes that will inspire you to be the best version of yourself, so you can begin living your most delicious life today.

3. Develop Enticing Coaching Packages:

Design your coaching packages so that they are irresistible to your clients. I recommend having 3 levels of packages to accommodate your client’s budgets and needs. I also recommend that you get your clients to commit to at least 12 sessions of coaching. Your packages should be a minimum of 3 months in duration; preferably 6 months or even a year.

Platinum Package: In this package include everything you love to do, possibly including some consulting. If you like to travel, include a weekend getaway for you and your client. If you like to write, create an opportunity for your client to become a published author. If you have the expertise as a consultant, you can include your consulting skills in this package. Make sure you charge enough for this package to cover your time and your expenses.

Gold Package: This is your one-on-one coaching package where your client will get individual attention and coaching. I recommend starting with weekly coaching sessions. Some coaches schedule their sessions for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd week of the month, giving them the last week of the month to work on business development or take personal time off.

Silver Package: This is your group coaching package. Group coaching is for those clients that either can’t afford your Platinum or Gold package and still want to receive coaching, or for people that prefer a community environment. You only need two clients to start your group coaching series. I recommend a maximum of 6 clients per group. Coaching 6 clients in a group can be completed in an hour and 15 minutes. Any longer and you will lose their attention! With any more than 6 clients in a group, you won’t be able to give them enough individual support and the level of attention they deserve.

4. Network with other professionals and always ask for referrals

Networking and asking for referrals is a great way to build your business.

First, make sure to let everyone you already know, know what you do. Second, ask them to introduce you to people they know that could use your services, and please, pass the word along for you.

Next, think about all the professionals that may already be working with your potential client. Therapists make great referral partners. Which therapists do you know personally?

Lastly, think of all the different types of professionals that work with your potential clients. Create a schedule where you consistently reach out and introduce your services to those professionals.

5. Speaking, becoming an author

Speaking and becoming an author are both great ways to build your authority, credibility and get your name known. It’s an excellent way to take your coaching business to the next level.

When speaking to an audience, make sure you let them know to meet you at the back of the room to learn more about your offering. Do the same in your book. Make sure your offer and contact information is in your book.

What are the most common mistakes you have seen coaches make when they start their business? What can be done to avoid those errors?

One of the most common mistakes I’ve heard of occurs during the enrollment process. New coaches are so enthusiastic to help someone that they tend to begin coaching a client before they’ve got them enrolled into a coaching package. Why would a client pay for coaching when they just received it for free?

To avoid this situation, remember not to coach during the introduction process. Just let your potential client know that you can help them on their journey, and explain how your coaching packages work.

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.

In my course, I teach coaches how to write a vision statement for their clients. The impact is absolutely a “wow” experience and results in great testimonials for the coach. A vision statement helps the client to see themselves being successful. It helps to reprogram the subconscious mind to be in alignment with the creative conscious mind which is a key factor in a client’s success.

I have witnessed many people receiving their vision statements. Their reactions are a combination of tears of joy, inspiration, feeling empowered, heard, acknowledged, and an overall feeling that they will be successful. “Life-changing” is a comment I’ve heard frequently. Over the years I’ve had many clients call me and share that everything that was written in their vision statement came to pass. They are living their dream life and are so grateful that they had the experience of receiving their vision statement and the coaching that kept them accountable as they were moving towards their goals.

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?

In my opinion, the best way to find customers is by referrals. If you are new to coaching, you may not have any customers to get referrals from! The solution is simple.

  • Create your elevator pitch.
  • Define your coaching packages.
  • Get your elevator pitch out to everyone you know, and ask them to share it with everyone they know. Along with your elevator pitch, state that you are now accepting 3 pro bono clients; who do they know that could use your services?

With each pro bono client, have them agree to the following:

If you find benefit from my coaching services, I’m going to ask you for a couple of things in exchange. First, I’d like a testimonial from you about the impact my coaching has had on your life. Second, I’d like a warm introduction to 3 people you know that could also use my coaching services. Does that sound fair?

At the end of the 3rd coaching session with your pro bono clients, let them know that this was your last coaching session together. Ask if they would like to continue working with you as their coach. If they would like to continue with you, share how your coaching packages work and enroll them as paying clients.

Taking on 3 pro bono clients is a great way to get started. I know coaches that have used this method exclusively to get clients! I also know a coach that accepted 10 pro bono clients (instead of 3). Within 30 days, he had 10 pro bono clients and 4 paying clients. Another coach I know only found 2 pro bono clients as he was starting out. The good news was that his 2nd client converted to a paying client at the end of the 3rd session and she hired him to coach her entire staff. Pro bono sessions work.

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?

In my opinion, you don’t need to work extremely long hours to get started. It’s really very simple. You don’t have to have a super marketing funnel, or a complex website, or a team of people to help you with marketing. You just need to take the steps outlined above and you will be on your way.

First, decide what you want your lifestyle to look like. Then determine the amount of money you need to support that lifestyle. Figure out how many clients you would like to serve in a week and with those two numbers, you can calculate the amount you need to charge for your coaching packages.

Creating a work/life balance is important, both for your mental and physical health. If you are stressing out about creating your coaching business, hire a coach to help you get clarity, peace of mind, and confidence as you embark on this brilliant journey.

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. 🙂

Teach a man to fish and he can feed himself for a lifetime. I like to think of coaching as a way to help people to connect to their inner-being so they can begin to express their creative, divine purpose and create abundance in their lives. I’ve already started a movement in this direction by training more than 6,500 life coaches with my proven system of coaching.

Imagine if every person on the planet was creating with the natural gifts they were born with. People would feel fulfilled and would know their life has a purpose. And as they express their innate gifts and share them with the world, many lives would be blessed and changed for the better. Living a meaningful, purposeful life would become the norm, instead of the exception. That’s the movement I wish to see in the world.

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.

The person I would most enjoy spending a moment with would be Eckhart Tolle, author of The Power of Now: A Guide To Spiritual Enlightenment. I am currently hosting a podcast, in a book-study format, based upon his book. I imagine that, if we were to meet, we would sit in silence enjoying each other’s presence!

How can our readers further follow your work online?

My website is the best place to get connected with me. That’s I can also be found on social media and podcast sites. A simple search for “Barbara Wainwright” will give you plenty of opportunities to follow me.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success and good health!

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