The Business Edge Blog

Interview with Holly

Interview with Holly Hanson

What Is A Certified Professional Business Coach?  A Business Coach is a resource for business owners to help them brainstorm ideas as well as guide them to reach their goals.  Many business owners are experts in a field that they worked in as an employee.  Somewhere along the line they decide to break away from the employee role and go out on their own.  They are subject matter experts in their field, but often have never been in the role of the decision maker for every decision that a business owner faces.  A Business Coach acts much like a sport coach does – they don’t jump in and “run” your business any more than a sports coach jumps in to play the game.  They provide insight and strategy from the sidelines just like a sports coach does.  They help the business owner be the best they can be, just like a sports coach helps each of their players be the best they can be.

How Did You Get Started As A Business Coach?  When I began coaching my local area was experiencing extreme unemployment as corporations were leaving and hundreds of people were being outsourced.  We had the highest unemployment in the nation.  Our Congressman, Don Manzullo, served on the Small Business Administration (SBA) committee while in Washington DC.  He learned there was a competitive grant opportunity for an SBA funded Women’s Business Center and wanted to apply for one in his area to help people become self-employed.  He found a host agency for the grant, The Abilities Center, and I was asked to help write the SBA grant application as well as become the Executive Director if the grant was awarded.  That was the beginning of EDGE – Enterprise Development Growth and Excellence, a Women’s Business Center Where Men Are Welcome.  We followed the guildelines of the SBA in our coaching.  When the grant funding ended I served as the interim Director of the SBDC, Small Business Development Center, for the local community college.  I also became a Licensed Professional Business Coach with additional training provided by the PBCA, Professional Business Coaches Alliance.

And Executive Coach?  My experience in Corporate America as an executive in the aerospace and machine tool industries as well as being the Executive Director of the non-profit Women’s Business Center provide a unique background to help corporate and non-profit executives be the best that they can be.  I have managed employee groups as large as 75 with multiple offices throughout the US and internationally.  I’ve managed projects and budgets as large as $75 million. I have walked in the shoes of many executives and can help them see alternatives to stregthen their role in the organization.

How does being a Certified Retirement Coach Fit In?  Becoming a Certified Retirement Coach was actually client driven.  My clients started to ask questions about what they were going to do to find meaning in retirement.  This is not financial planning – this is the rest of what retirement is all about.  My corporate clients as well as my entrepreneur clients tie much of their identity to what they do for a living, as most Americans do.  Who they are going to be in retirement and what they are going to do with the rest of their lives to find meaning and fulfillment started to be a greater part of their questions during our coaching sessions as their option of retirement gets closer and closer.

How Does A Client Get Started With You?  It’s easy.  We meet for a complimentary 30 minutes to talk about what their needs are and if coaching could provide clarity and help them reach their goals.  This works well for Business Coaching, Executive Coaching, and Retirement Coaching.  If working together is a good fit, we may start with one-on-one coaching or I may invite them to join one of my coaching groups.  I have Mastermind Groups, The Boardroom, Client Attraction Bootcamps, Smart Women Breaking Free and other business, executive and retirement groups.

How Should People Contact You?  Email or phone work well.  Either email is fine – or or by phone at 815-985-3652.   I look forward to speaking with you!


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